Forge Certified Systems Integrator BlackSmithSoft provides software that integrates project-essential elements and software systems from multiple vendors into a single, user-friendly, cloud-based platform accessible from any desktop or portable device. With two key offerings—Blacksmith DC and Blacksmith WFP—the firm brings years of hands-on site experience to its focus on the implementation of BIM (Building Information Modeling), AWP (Advanced Work Packaging), and WFP (Workface Planning) in commercial, residential, and infrastructure building projects, and oil and gas construction projects.
As the scale of a construction project grows, so does the possibility of going over time and budget. The construction industry sought to address this in recent years by creating Workface Planning (WFP) to align and integrate a project’s planning-related processes. Recognized by the Construction Owners Association of Alberta (COAA) as a best practice in 2005, WFP—and its greater umbrella of Advanced Work Packaging (AWP)—is becoming the industry standard in construction project management. However, firms have continued to struggle with efficiency as projects involve large ecosystems of data silos and types of software. This can cause communication disruptions between management and on-site teams, and result in costly delays and errors.
How BlackSmithSoft solved it with Forge.
BlackSmithSoft founders created the company to solve the problem of project data consolidation and communication. With more than 20 years of experience in the field, they realized that data silos needed to be resolved through the integration of all BIM and WFP-related project data sources into a single source of truth—bringing the right information to the right place at the right time in a project’s development.
The goal was to develop software that would store everything construction stakeholders needed in the cloud, making it accessible to all project team members with no software needed. From day one, the team knew they wanted to build their software on Forge. Straight out of the box, the Forge platform’s powerful capacity to handle more than 70 file formats enables the firm to focus on application development rather than constant adjustments to accommodate different file formats.
BlackSmithSoft uses the Data Management API to read all project files, documents, properties, custom attributes, and stored images, and integrate these into BlackSmithSoft’s platform. BIM 360 API is used to manage the issues for the entire lifecycle of the project. Model Derivative API is used to import and export data into Microsoft Excel sheets, and to translate multiple formatted project files into a format rendered for 3D, 4D, and 5D viewing in the Viewer API.
Forge highlights include the following:
- Enables efficient cross-team collaboration by storing all project data in one cloud-based location.
- Removes the need for extra software, simplifying project accessibility through universal web browsers and devices used on the jobsite.
- Consolidates up-to-date information on necessary actions, reducing errors and delays, and cutting costs on one or more dashboards.
- Visualizes actual versus forecasted progress of a project, task, budgets, crews, equipment, and materials at any given time.
- Provides instant 4D and 5D visual representations in the cloud.
"Our Forge-based platform helps the on-site people be more efficient and more effective. And to our amazement, we realized that despite being a cloud-based system, Forge has more functionality than what’s available in the market – especially when it comes to file formats which helps us be more efficient also.”— Chehade Kassouf, VP of Operations, BlackSmithSoft