My title

BW Sessions: Bluebeam Software

BW Sessions: Bluebeam Software

by TODD STOLARSKI | Oct 13, 2015

Paper, who needs it?  Not Chris Jervey, director of global construction for Pasadena-based Bluebeam Software. Earlier this year, BW had the chance to sit down with Jervey, who gave us his thoughts on our industry's potentially paperless future, white hat hackers, and where technology is taking all of us in the very near future. 

BW: SO HOW DID BLUEBEAM COME TO BE?

JERVEY:  About 13 years ago, a bunch of aerospace engineers spun off from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory and went looking for a better way to print to PDF.  We've come a long way since then. At this point, I think that we're considered the industry standard PDF markup and collaboration tool. 

BW:  WHAT IS THE MARKET NICHE THAT BLUEBEAM SEEKS TO FILL?

JERVEY:  We're the front-end solution for the information tracking procedures that go on throughout the life of a project. Whether you are looking to post RFIs, track middles, or many of the things that happen in a digital environment when you are looking at the existing set of plans or blueprints.  We’re the customizable markup tool for the industry sitting on top of a lot of other cloud-based collaborations tools which allow other people to do that stuff in real-time.

BW:  ANY UNEXPECTED CHALLENGES UPON ENTERING THE MARKET?

JERVEY:  Absolutely. That's another reason why we embrace events like hackathons. I just did a talk called "Honoring the Hack", because unexpected challenges are what this industry is fueled by. Long before everything was digital, it was about finding something onsite that you didn't expect or having a change in the decision making or chain of command. It's an on-the-fly industry. How do we embrace the spirit of that? To develop the tools that will make it easy to adapt to those changes. We’re driven by it at Bluebeam. Every time there is a challenge it becomes an opportunity. That’s the thrill for us.

BW:  SO MUCH CAN CHANGE IN JUST 10 YEARS. HOW WILL BLUEBEAM BE USED IN 2025?

JERVEY:  As far as the digital world is concerned, PDFs have always been the cheap, unviseral file format that protects the native file format. For us, we’re likely to focus more on our cloud-based collaboration tools. The environment is changing -- people just don't want to be on a desktop, or in an office.  Our people are on site, in a trailer, in a truck. They're wherever. They might be having a conference call from any of those places (hopefully not driving on the freeway in the truck). They need to be able to post and see real-time information from wherever they are. So, our cloud-based collaboration tools will continue to be a part of what we do. As we move toward more pure model-based work, we will continue to find a way that we can help provide a way to manage and track information inherent to BIM models. 

BW: HOW FAR OFF IS THAT MYTHICAL PAPERLESS JOBSITE?

JERVEY:  There will come a day when we are completely paperless. That's pretty far away, though. But I do think that the day where we get to 75-90% paperless is not very far away. It’s really about tapping into the existing fears from those that haven't already converted, and making sure that the solution (for them) isn't overwhelming. Take the time to get to know what their motivations are (and) implement those solutions in a way that isn't crazy or off-putting. It's fear-driven.  

** BONUS QUESTION **

BW: SPEAKING OF FEAR... UMM, WHEN DO YOU THINK ROBOTS WILL TAKE OVER OUR JOBS?

JERVEY:  2017. So, my advice is to buy a retirement house now in the Dominican Republic. Maybe take a long cruise, or hopefully, make sure to befriend at least one of those robots.

BW:  THANKS, CHRIS. NEVER TOO LATE TO START PLANNING AHEAD. PLEASE STAY IN TOUCH.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

For more, visit Bluebeam's website and/or follow its twitter feed.

Google+ Google+