Commercial structure

How NVIDIA and Devcon built a cutting-edge workspace

Devcon teamed up with NVIDIA to build NVIDIA’s state-of-the-art corporate campus in Santa Clara, CA. The design-build project, nicknamed ‘Endeavor,’ is comprised of approximately 500,000 square feet of open office space between two levels under a single roof, and a central atrium.

225lb

paper vs. 1lb tablet

3x

faster getting docs to the field

300

Users on PlanGrid

The Problem

The hyper-collaborative workflow on Endeavor began with Devcon's discovery of construction apps seven years prior; they were already ahead of the game when they put tablets in the hands of their field staff. They wanted to provide a system where the field trusted that they were always working from the current set.

The GC started to purchase iPads in 2010, and tried to implement multiple methods of digital drawing collaboration. At first, they used PDF readers, which were slow on mobile devices and complicated to use. Then they tried mobile versions of apps that had been beneficial for their office team. Yet again, they struggled to gain field adoption because the apps were too complex.

“I like the tool that does one thing really well, not ten things at 60%. PlanGrid gives everyone the right information, instantly—that’s huge.”

Rob Benson

Architect

The Solution

Several years passed before Joe Tan, Devcon's Technology Director, discovered PlanGrid. After meeting with PlanGrid's CEO, Tracy Young, he decided it was the perfect fix for their blueprint management struggles. Devcon tested PlanGrid on several projects and instantly found several key benefits.

First, they noticed that PlanGrid's speed on mobile devices was unmatched by any of the other apps they'd tried. It was so simple that even their technology-averse field team wanted it, and they were able to learn how to use it with little or no training.

PlanGrid also has a simple user experience that allows for fast navigation between sheets. The detail callout hyperlinks auto-populate upon the first upload, so the field can look into details and use the recent sheets button to flip back in seconds. This workflow would be practically impossible on paper prints or using mobile software with complicated interfaces.

The project is leveraging cutting-edge technologies to craft this unique structure, from NVIDIA’s Iray—a rendering technology that generates photorealistic imagery—to PlanGrid. While PlanGrid has been Devcon’s field standard for years and is often used to collaborate with owners, NVIDIA has taken that collaboration on PlanGrid to a whole new level to ensure that every detail of its innovative design comes to life.

Results

After several years, Devcon has been able to implement PlanGrid on a large scale, using the app to hyper-collaborate with trades, owners, and architects with the unique workflows they invented. They’re in the process of growing 215 PlanGrid users to 300, and use the app on almost every project as their sole field communication platform.

“It’s pretty obvious that PlanGrid will pay off. Unlike other software investments, you don’t have to do thorough calculations to justify it. It addresses such a significant pain point. We’re committed to PlanGrid because it makes us a better company,” said Joe Tan, Technology Director, Devcon

Read the full case study.paper airplane

Other projects built with PlanGrid

Levi's Stadium

Devcon started using PlanGrid in 2014, and their first large PlanGrid project was Levi's Stadium, home of the San Francisco 49ers. Although they were early in rolling it out, there were already about 80 PlanGrid users including the general contractor, owner, and subcontractor teams. They quickly found that involving everyone in PlanGrid--especially the owner--was a pivotal part of their success.

Endeavor

Endeavor, which will be ongoing until late 2017, is a complex build permitted in a fast-track fashion with multiple rounds of regulatory approvals that required constant updates to the construction documents. When construction began, there were 1800 drawings issued to the team, and by the time that construction completes, there will have been over 6,600 drawing sheets issued for construction via PlanGrid. With so many changes, the cost and effort to keep everyone on the current set would have been daunting. Fortunately, the entire project is on PlanGrid, so the owner, GC, architect, and many of the subs and consultants are easily kept on the same page.