Monday, October 12, 2015

Free Spec Exchange Comes with a Free Specification Writer – Yes, a Real Person!

A couple weeks ago I posted about Spec Exchange, an add-in to streamline door hardware specification from Revit. I suspected this add-in was free, but I don't like to list add-ins as being free when they simply enable interoperability between Revit and another paid application. So, I thought I should do some investigating. I was able to glean from Allegion's website that the Spec Exchange add-in enables interoperability between Revit and their SpeXtra product, but wasn't able to find a price for SpeXtra.

I reached out to Allegion's Marketing Manager, Melany Whalin, and she informed me of some very interesting things that I'm happy to pass along.

Melany confirmed that the Spec Exchange add-in is free.  She also let me know that Allegion is a manufacturer of security products, including the brands Schlage, Von Duprin, LCN, Steelcraft and more.  Allegion can provide complete opening solutions with their breadth of products.

The plug-in can be downloaded for free and used by anyone to export their door schedules, it doesn't have to be used with SpeXtra. In fact, SpecXtra is Allegion's in-house specification software. It's not for sale or use outside of Allegion.

Now, here's where it gets interesting. Allegion also has 150 specification writers around the country that will write door and hardware specifications and create door schedules for architects for FREE. The Spec Exchange add-in was developed to increase productivity for both architects and specification writers, and the plug-in was designed for architects who want help creating their door schedules.  This plugin fits into your normal workflow and allows Allegion to provide seamless help with preparing your door schedule.

As Melany stated, "We do not charge for preparing door schedules, so although the plug-in is designed to work with Allegion’s system, there’s no sales tie here."

Melany went on to state, "The main purpose of Spec Exchange is to increase productivity around creating door schedules for architects who don’t want to write those themselves.  We often find that even architects who specify other products in the building, don’t want to specify door hardware as there are many fire, building and accessibility codes and requirements that they can’t keep up with. So, many architects want help with specifying door hardware and creating door schedules, and this plug-in is designed to help with those needs."

A free add-in that comes with a free person? That's Editor's Choice worthy right there.

There's more information available on the Allegion website.