Saturday, June 30, 2012

Creating RFI reports with screen captures directly from ArchiCAD 16

Good Morning Everyone!

Today we have a great video!

 Image from

Creating RFI reports with screen captures directly from ArchiCAD 16!!! Some of the features we used were introduced with ArchiCAD 16 so it may not be as smooth as this video in older versions.

This is the standard we established for our own BIM Service Projects and the video is created for our internal training.

Of course we are happy to share it with you guys:)

I hope you will find it as useful as we do:)

Enjoy and feel free to share!

Diyane Koseoglu
Jothi Shanmugam

Thursday, June 28, 2012

How to indentify the technical software proficieny of existing teams and new hires?

Good Morning All,

Today I will talk about something new! Ofcourse related to BIM but not fully.

When I first started at BIMES we were recruiting new team members and all of a sudden I was asked to test their technical skills on ArchiCAD.

On the first one, I was unprepared and really did not know how to check the candidate's skills so I just looked at the projects he's done and asked some questions but I had no idea if he is good or not.

Unfortunately it can be very costly if the hiring person can not evaluate the person properly and gives him responsibilities that he can not handle. In our business it can cause even cancellation of the project contract.

Anyway, after the first experience I got smarter:)) so I started to look for methods to measure ArchiCAD skills.

Well, I was lucky as Graphisoft has a very good system for that. ArchiCAD Competency Challange Test! It is an online test that asks you 50 multiple choice questions about anything and everything about ArchiCAD:)

So I started using it but on a candidate, which I knew he was a good user, it did not work. His result was very low and I  noticed that ArchiCAD Competency Challenge Test is good to measure the knowledge on software features but it is not enough. You need to test candidates with some hands-on exercises as well.

So I started to use another test in which a pln file is provided with a simple model and you are required to generate PDF output according to the sample provided. You basically have to set the layer combinations, view sets and publisher etc.

When I started to apply these 2 tests, I was able to evaluate the candidate's ArchiCAD skills fully.

I was thinking of the HR managers in large AEC companies? How do they know they are hiring the right people. Yes, if they are using ArchiCAD there are many tests available but what about the other tools?

Then I came up with KnowledgeSmart!

KnowledgeSmart is a cloud -based solution that has online skills assessment tools, which help AEC firms identify the technical software proficiency of existing teams and new hires.

This is basically cloud-based version of the system I was using... Of course much more developed...

They have both multiple choice and hands-on exercises and as a result it provides skills gap analysis and benchmarking metrics which enable the AEC companies to maximise their return on investment in technology and people.

Many companies are using KnowledgeSmart to evaluate and develop their existing teams' skills which is as important as evaluating the new hires.

Vendors release new versions every year and if an architect / engineer do not train himself on the new features he will be using the software with 60-70% efficiency in 4-5 years time.

At the moment they have tests for Revit (Architecture, MEP, Structure, Families, Project Process), AutoCAD, Civil 3D, Inventor, 3ds Max, MicroStation, Bentley Architecture, Rhino, SketchUp, Adobe InDesign and Adobe Photoshop.

Nice, isn't it?

PS: Yes, we became their local distributor:)))

Diyane Koseoglu

Sunday, June 24, 2012

BIM in the Middle East 2011 Survey Results

Hi All!

I have good news for you!

Building Smart MENA & India made "BIM in the Middle East 2011 Survey Results" available to everyone recently. (It used to be 500 USD)

If you are curious about
  • What the other companies in the ME are doing about BIM?
  • Who is adopting to BIM faster? Contractors, consultants or developers?
  •  What is the main driver to BIM Adoption?
  • What is the main obstacles to the BIM Adoption?
 Then Middle East 2011 Survey is the source you are looking for.

It presents very valuable information in a well presented way.

You can download the free PDF copy from here.

If you want to be part of next survey please take part by clicking here.

Have a great week!
Diyane Koseoglu

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Integrating BIM with ERP!

Hi Everyone!

Recently I met with a contractor who wants to integrate BIM with their ERP system. They knew us for quite some time and familiar with the prestigious projects we worked on so they asked our help for this integration.

To be honest, when I heard the sentence I couldn't speak for a couple of seconds due to the shock:)))

A contractor... in the Middle East... asking for an integration between BIM and ERP! Wow!

Yes, and they are serious!

I told them we hardly convince contractors to implement BIM and no contractor has ever asked us about ERP integration.

Well, we all laughed at the tragicomic situation and decided to take it one step at a time.

While we discuss the details of BIM implementation I will do further studies about the ERP integration. So I have homework:))

I am happy to do this homework since I love working with companies who has really smart people:))

Have a great weekend!
Diyane Koseoglu

Monday, June 18, 2012

ArchiCAD Tip: Creating & Publishing Layout in Sequence

Hi Everyone!

We are updating our ArchiCAD Standards Guide these days and what is different this year is the small videos we are adding to the guide.

Recently new team members attended to our BIM Modeling Services Team and unfortunately we could not take them through the orientation period as we had many new and urgent projects.

So we ended up a team with different ArchiCAD knowledge level.

Of course we are doing some on the fly trainings but I am not sure if it is increasing or decreasing productivity:)) Our experienced guys are getting distracted constantly.

So as a solution we decided to add some short videos explaining how to follow our company standards as some of them requires advanced knowledge of ArchiCAD.

One of them is "Creating & Publishing Layout in Sequence". Actually this is the one we had the major problems.

Enjoy Jothi's 10 Minutes video!

Diyane Koseoglu
Jothi Shanmugam!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Wanted! Fresh Graduate Architects/Engineers with ArchiCAD Knowledge

Hi All,

 Image from

We are looking for new team members for our Dubai office. Our aim is to get fresh graduate architects/engineers and with ArchiCAD Knowledge so that they can easily adopt to our company culture and standards.

I know ArchiCAD is being taught at Canadian Universiy of Dubai and Sharjah University. If you graduated from these universities, it is a plus for;)

Job description and requirements are available below. Please email us on if you are interested.

Junior BIM Architect / Engineer:

  • Create Building Information Models (BIM) for construction projects by converting the 2D design drawings to BIM including design, procurement details, environmental conditions and submital processes and other specifications for building quality.
  • Review design drawings
  • Build 3D models per design specifications
  • Collection of available modeled data
  • Develop and maintain BIM content – templates, libraries, etc. 
  • Ability to work in multi-national environments.
  • Medium / High level of ArchiCAD knowledge.
  • EcoDesigner, MEP Modeler knowledge is a plus.
  • Ability to learn new software rapidly.
  • Excellent communication skills.
  • Proficient in the English Language. Arabic is a plus.
  • Exhibit clear understanding of design and construction process.
  • Demonstrate a reliable, responsive and positive work ethic with the highest degree of integrity.
  • BS/BA - Professional Degree in Architecture, Engineering or Construction.
Have a great weekend!

PS: Madagascar 3 is out! Yihu!
Diyane Koseoglu

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Is it a radio for ArchiCAD fans? No, it isn't!

You know what we went through on the days prior to BIM Conference Egypt 2012 event.

Although nothing serious was happening in the city, media was showing as if it is a war area and we had difficulty to convince our speakers about the safety.

However we were lucky to have very professional speakers and none of them cancelled their speech due to this reason:))

However this doesn't mean everything went as planned.

Some of our speakers had last minute problems with their passports and couldn't make it to the event.

One of the presentations cancelled was "BIM for Facilities Management" and when the rest of the organization team heard it is not going to happen, they started to look at me with big eyes:))

Well, I really don't like this "big eye look"! It usually means "we have a big problem":))

Then I understood the reason behind the "big eye look". There were many Facility Managers attending to the event for this specific presentation.

What to do! What to do!

I was never involved in FM part of BIM before. Even when I was a junior trainer for ArchiCAD we were joking about ArchiFM and saying that it is a radio for ArchiCAD fans etc:))) (I know it is not professional and not something to be proud of but I really did not know what it was:))

Now, I am supposed to make an ArchiFM presentation and I have 1 day to prepare:))

I  studied a bit further and learnt that 75% of the project costs are operations and maintenance related.

Then I noticed that I was not paying enough attention to FM but I am not alone:)) Construction professionals always have a tendency to ignore FM part of the project:))

Himm now it is time to learn more about it!

I have to admit that ArchiFM guys were extremely helpful and they provided me some material and a 7 minutes video which I fell in love with. (Thank you very much dear ArchiFM team)


I liked the seamless connection between ArchiCAD and ArchiFM. How ArchiFM extends the amount of data that can be added to BIM Model is impressive. 

I loved the fact that furniture or phone numbers can be linked to a person and when you move that person in the model all the related stuff will be moved with him in the database.

I also loved the graphical feedback on the model when you want to filter the rooms smaller than a certain size.

It's pretty nice, isn't it?

Diyane Koseoglu

Sunday, June 10, 2012 Webinar, ArchiCAD 16 Receives a New Award and Vico 3.3 is Out!

Good Morning to Everyone!

It is the start of a new week today. At least for the ones living in the Middle East. I am kind of jealous of he ones who are having a lazy Sunday in the rest of the world:))

Luckily I have quite a lot to tell you today!

Well, the first thing I would like to share is the Webinar on the 19th June, Tuesday. The timings are as below:

·       "UAE time" (Tuesday, June 19, 2012 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM GMT +4)
register here:

·       "Cairo time" (Tuesday, June 19, 2012 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM GMT +2)
register here:

·       "KSA, Kuwait and Qatar time" (Tuesday, June 19, 2012 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM GMT +3)
register here:

Webinar will introduce the new portal which is the latest cloud solution of Graphisoft.

I am quite excited about it as it will make our lifes much easier when it comes to searching for furniture, equipment etc.

Type it to the "search box" in objects settings and find the object from Papua New Guinea:))) Yes, there is a country like that so no need to googling it. trust me:))) Even better news, English is one of their official languages so probably the parameters will be in English as well:))

Papua New Guinea Map

Anyway, enough of empty talk! Let me get back to some serious stuff again:))

The second thing I wanted to share is a new Award that ArchiCAD received. ArchiCAD 16 is awarded as 1st "BEST of SHOW" for AIA National.

The third one is about VICO!

VICO 3.3 is out!

New features can be categorized into 4:

Multi-User Environment: As many customers deploy Vico Office on larger and larger projects, it is inevitable that their team sizes increase as well. So instead of few Estimators working on a bid or deadline for a cost plan, there are now larger teams divvying up the workload. The teams can log into the same project and progress in parallel with the various tasks that need to be completed. One team can focus on reviewing the takeoff quantities; another group can work simultaneously on a different section of the cost plan; and still start work on the required set of tasks for the project schedule.

The result is continuously updated data for the entire team, better communication, and estimates created much faster with better detail.

Localization: Now when system administrators first install Vico Office, the question they will be asked is, In which language would you like to use Vico Office Version R3.3 introduces our support for the standard default of American English, but now offers UK English, Finnish, and Swedish. This means that all the database field names, field values, and navigation is in the user’s native language.

Cost and Quantity per Location Report: As everyone knows, the Reporting Engine in Vico Office is absurdly powerful and capable of drawing in data from every field in the database structure. One new report, specifically requested by customers working on staged projects like high-tech campuses, office parks, and even very large single building projects, is the Cost and Quantities per Location Report. This report powers the critical cash flow per stage analysis and helps Owners AND GCs organize their projects.

Caption: This report template, along with all the others, are ready for you to use just check the installation folder; in most cases the structure is C:\Program Files\Vico Software\Vico Office (x64)\Report Templates.


Diyane Koseoglu

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Back to Dubai

Hi All,

Finally I am back with very nice memories!

Well, we had a great conference in Cairo. I can even say the best conference I have ever attended.

Great speakers, great attendees and of course great organizers:))))

I would like to thank Eng. Omar Sabbour, Dr. Mohammed Marzouk, Eng. Ayman Al Mousawi, Dr. Najeeb Al Nauimi, Mr. Abelardo Tolentino Jr. and also BIMES & Projacs Team for the great work!

We had 186 high level attendees and they were all impressed by the presentations. The feedback was amazing.

I am waiting for the photos and videos from the event managers and I will share with as soon as I receive them.

We also had a lucky draw at the end of the event and one of the awards went to PGESCO who was our first client in Egypt. They were the first team I trained after I start at BIMES so they are quite special for me and I am happy that they got the award:))

Don't get me wrong! It was not a set up:))) just pure luck:)))

Have a great weekend!
Diyane Koseoglu

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Reporting from Tahrir Square

As some of you already know we are organizing a BIM Conference in cooperation with Projacs in Cairo on the 5th of June, Tuesday.

I think this is one of the best conference we have ever organized. We have amazing speakers this year.

Jothi and I arrived at Cairo in advance to finalize the conference arrangements.

We arrived on the same day of Husnu Mubarak's final court and we were expecting to see some action at least at the Tahrir Square. Our speakers were also contacting me and asking if I am still alive or not:)))

Currently I am writing this post from BIMES Cairo office which is 3 minutes walking distance to the Tahrir Square. It's all peaceful and relaxing.

On the contrary to what media shows, I have not seen any protests or demonstrations. The only danger I saw here is the "Egyptian Drivers" and that's all:)))

I am hoping to survive without getting hit by one of them and host a great conference!

Diyane Koseoglu