The key to more efficient specifications

Rachel York, Allegion specification consultant

Rachel York has been in the door hardware industry for 17 years. Currently a specification consultant for Allegion, she’s collaborated on more than 300 specifications and, therefore, seen the challenges that arise when there are gaps in communication.

"We lack the visibility we need during traditional door hardware specifications," she explains. "We wait for the architect to send an updated set of drawings, then react. It’s very much reactionary."

She says that collaboration is key to an efficient specification process and emphasizes the need for seamless coordination across all parties. Miscommunication and unclear product scope coverage are common challenges during the review and revision of door hardware specifications.

That collaboration goes beyond the specification writer and the architect. End users, security consultants, designers and other collaborators all need to weigh in, so it’s best if they all start with the same view of what we’re working towards, according to York. "If all parties collaborated and worked from the same view versus waiting for documents to be sent out, reviewed and returned by design partners separately, we’d be able to pick up on errors and deficiencies ahead of time."

More efficient specifications
Allegion’s Overtur™ is a cloud-based suite of tools where architects and door hardware consultants can come together to collaborate on specifications and the security design of doors and openings. These tools provide a centralized place to capture and maintain door hardware requirements and decisions, with easy options to push that information back to the design tools (e.g. Revit).

"Overtur is a progressive tool that will drive industry wide change in current process," according to York. "Overtur allows Allegion to be more prescriptive and seamless in our consultative approach to the specification writing and collaboration process of building design and construction." Currently, York is working with a firm on the specifications for student housing facility at a university in Pennsylvania. "This Revit based project has 1,250 openings. Where completing a revision review just to determine what had changed would normally take one or two days manually, I was able to load drawings and schedules to easily review changes made in a matter of minutes."

She adds, "It’s simple to grasp the platform. Users can easily drag and drop in their current door schedule and throw a note on it that lets me know there’s been a revision for me to check out. The latest improvements made the navigation cleaner, faster and more efficient. Users can move around view pains and customize view settings easily."

Overall, the cloud-based collaboration tool has been received extremely well by her clients.

"I had a meeting with an Architect who wasn’t aware of the program, and it seemed like Overtur was the answer to every question he had. He said they used Revit and asked, ‘Do you have anything that makes it easier to send revisions?’ It was like pulling a rabbit out of my hat. Yes, here’s Overtur. I’m not a salesy person, but I’ve found that Overtur really just sells itself."

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