The humble specification, what is it and why does it matter?

A specification is a document that describes in words what cannot be visualised or explained on a drawing or a model. In construction, the ‘spec’ covers everything from the performance criteria of the asset, the quality of the systems and products, which standards are applicable and how they should be executed, down to the specific products to be used.

Specifications are required during the design stage. They form part of the contract documentation and play a key role in project fulfilment. As-built specifications are a crucial part of handover documentation at the end of the construction stage.

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Digital specification with NBS Chorus

There are several considerations when developing a specification, such as time efficiencies, knowledge sharing, quality of information and risk mitigation. 

As we move towards an industry increasingly adopting digital technologies, introducing a digital master specification system can improve efficiencies, increase collaboration and help mitigate risks.

NBS Chorus is a collaborative platform that helps to manage and structure the content of your specification while also dynamically linking the specification and the 3D model. Any changes in either data set can be tracked and updated to ensure coordination and consistency between the different documents – helping to remove a major cause of both cost and quality issues in the field.

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The platform is adaptable to the needs of individual practices. NBS authors multiple content sets, such as SpeedSpec, SpecPack and Uniclass, for specifiers working on local and international projects, from small residential to large commercial builds. Features like Masters, Spec Notes, Organisation Notes, Stylesheets and Tables allow full control over the specification creation and publishing process. This dynamic functionality enables an improved environment to produce fit for purpose design documentation and accurate as-installed data records being returned to the asset owner.

Unified product data – the key to digital success

Digital documentation increases the importance of data requirements. To make everything fly, specifiers need access to technical information, product certifications and BIM objects at their fingertips. Finding the right products with unified data, without searching for hours, is crucial to driving efficiency.

NBS Source is a free digital tool which enables specifiers to compare, select and specify construction products from leading manufacturers; pre-written in specification and BIM object format, all to relevant standards. Source connects directly to NBS Chorus, meaning products can be added to the spec at the click of a button.

With a team of technical experts working with a growing community of Australian manufacturers and suppliers to deliver product information in a detailed and structured format, NBS is making it even easier to create connected construction information.

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