06 Oct 2020

At Masterspec the number of specifications live on the platform at any one time always gives us an early indication of the state of the industry and, as the industry standard, we could be seen as a litmus test for the health of the New Zealand Construction industry. In the preliminary planning and design stages of a project specifiers do the work of correctly attributing products, product performance and the details of products and systems that are to go into the latest projects.
These newly created and completed specifications are then issued, with the drawing set, for consent, which occurs some time later, often not for a few months. While the level of consents has become the usual reporting metric for industry and the public, Masterspec activity is our most accurate and earliest indicator for the New Zealand construction industry’s supply chain performance.
While recent events over the last year, including COVID and an upcoming election, are said to be creating uncertainty, then you might expect that reflected in the current specification and project numbers that are currently underway. However, the reality is very different.

MASTERSPEC PROJECT & SPECIFICATION NUMBERS.  This September (and similarly for the previous three months) we have seen a record number of specifications started and completed on the Masterspec platform – over 15% higher than the same time last year.. We think this is a positive sign for the construction industry in the immediate to medium term. While this might surprise some economic pundits and outsiders to the industry, we get the feeling that, in talking to our many designers and partner suppliers, most are currently busier than ever, and our own leading indicators confirm that. 

THE UPTAKE OF mDOCS  Recently, another great success for Masterspec has been the uptake of mDocs, our new technical documentation reference library. MDocs allows your practice and Masterspec suppliers to associate technical documentation for reference on both current and future projects with just one click. We launched mDocs expecting there to be a gradual development of the technical documentation ecosystem as we looked to provide everyone with a more efficient way of working. However, since its launch on the 1st of September we have seen an immediate uptake of mDocs by both Users and Product Suppliers alike.

In a few short weeks we have seen over 1,800 documents uploaded to the system by our partners for you to reference. As specifiers we have seen you load over 5000 supporting documents in last 30 days alone to your current projects. And we see those numbers growing as users become accustomed to the new module and continue to grow the content with your own and supplier-based libraries.

THE INCREASE IN NEW PRODUCT PARTNER WORK SECTIONS   2020 has seen an increase in the number of manufacturers and suppliers working with us to create work sections for their key product lines. As you can see from this issue of NOTES alone, we often have 10 or more new sections every month, a number unheard of a year ago, and now have around 1,000 branded Work Sections and growing. This reflects a high level of confidence in the value of being present in the design stage of the construction industry.

We thought we’d bring you these numbers to remind everyone that the construction industry is so far still being underpinned by strong fundamental activity in the design stage. Masterspec is committed to keep developing our roadmap to bring world-class specifications and further digital data connectivity to the New Zealand construction industry.