As construction projects grow more complex and schedules continue to accelerate, it’s more important than ever to have a centralized place to manage, view, and collaborate on all project documents. Team members need to access, update, and share the latest documents at any time and across every platform.
Until now, the BIM 360 common data platform for construction workflows has provided tools for securely managing, publishing, viewing and collaborating on project models and drawings in a secure common data environment. We are thrilled to announce BIM 360 cloud platform integration with Microsoft Office 365. With the majority of BIM 360 users also using Microsoft applications as part of their daily construction workflows, the choice to integrate was a no-brainer.
The new Office 365 integration with BIM 360 now allows users, if they also subscribe to Office 365, the ability to not only view but also to directly edit Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, and Microsoft PowerPoint files on the web from within the BIM 360 Document Management module.
That means you can create, edit, and distribute specifications, spreadsheets, reports, proposals, and other Microsoft documents that you might use in your work. Other Microsoft applications, such as Visio, are available in view-only mode. Also, if you aren’t already a user of Office 365, you still have the ability to view any of these documents.
Easily view Office 365 files from within BIM 360
Prior to this release, Kelly Burke, a Quality Engineer at The Walsh Group, was having difficulty managing Word and Excel documents that needed to be stored in BIM 360. In order to view or edit any of these file types, she needed to leave the BIM 360 web application. “This integration allows our team to view all the documents (.pdf, .xlsx, .docx, etc.) all in one place in their web browser.”
“I think the best part of this release will be increased collaboration and time savings in regard to document preparation. The less tools/navigation our team has to do to get to documents the better! In addition, it will ensure our team can properly collaborate on draft documents without saving over other team members’ changes.”
Kelly Burke, a Quality Engineer at The Walsh Group
One of the main benefits of this new integration is a simplified and more efficient document management workflow. Sander de Zee, a BIM Manager at Dura Vermeer, is excited about the time it will save him and his teams. “The Microsoft Office 365 integration helps our organization in the digital transformation where we bring our project data together on Microsoft SharePoint and BIM 360. This brings us one step closer to the only source of truth and saves our project teams time as well as always has the latest version available,” said Zee.
Simplify workflows with the ability to edit Office 365 files directly from within BIM 360
Dura Vermeer and The Walsh Group are two of many BIM 360 customers who see this integration as key to streamlining their daily tasks. Here are the top 5 benefits to using the Office 365 integration:
- Version Control. Any time you edit and save a Microsoft document on the web within Document Management, it will automatically be saved as a new version. And all of your latest edits will be immediately accessible by everyone in the field via their mobile devices.
- Single Source of Truth. Whether you're in the office or field, you’ll always have the most up-to-date information because all documents are being edited and saved directly within BIM 360 vs. managing separate silos of information that can get out of sync.
- Better Collaboration. Because teams will be able to make live edits to Office 365 documents, they will be able to support faster and more accurate decision making. With the access and permission-based controls in BIM 360, teams can also ensure that the right information is in the right hands.
- Improved Efficiency. You’ll no longer have to download documents to your desktop for editing then waste time re-uploading edited documents to the Document Management module. End users can interact with Office files with the same familiar experience of Office 365 without having to move back and forth between applications.
- Supports and Enhances Other Document Management Workflows. Project teams can also view and share Office files in the context of document review and transmittal workflows, enhancing collaboration and control for all project documents.