Nemetschek North America announced today that its parent company, The Nemetschek Group and Adobe Systems Inc. will be working together more closely to optimize document processes for architects and engineers. The two companies are consolidating their roles as technology leaders by leveraging and promoting PDF as the format of choice for the exchange of data in the building industry. Nemetschek North America has already begun by integrating Adobe PDF creation capabilities directly into its CAD software program VectorWorks 12.5, and Nemetschek AG has integrated the technology into Allplan.

"Interoperability, seamless file formats, and efficient processes are becoming increasingly important for architects and engineers," explains Michael Westfahl, member of the managing board responsible for sales and marketing at Nemetschek. "The partnership with Adobe is thus a decisive step on the way to meeting these market requirements."

A central component of the collaboration is the licensing of the AdobeĀ® PDF Library Software Development Kit by Nemetschek. As a result, users can create Adobe PDF files from within VectorWorks and import PDF files into VectorWorks 12.5. These PDF files feature intelligent functions such as layers, scale information, and searchable text. Further integration of Adobe technology will follow in future software releases.

"The partnership with Adobe signals our intention to move beyond simple sharing of PDF files over e-mail and web services," says Sean Flaherty, CEO of Nemetschek North America. "We see PDF and the integration between VectorWorks and the Acrobat product line as way to fundamentally improve the collaboration workflow with CAD and remove much of the current uncertainty when transferring documents between design partners. PDF offers a key advantage over the current translation mechanisms-absolute reliability of data."

By significantly increasing established PDF functions in CAD systems, it will be easier for architects and engineers to exchange drawings and project documents with clients and contractors. Users can merge design drawings, project drawings, and drawings from different sources in a single PDF file, regardless of vendor-dependent interface formats. This means much more efficient workflows for both senders and recipients of documents. All parties involved can be included in the building coordination process, thus ensuring a clear record of the approval process is maintained.

"PDF files are a little revolution in action, and VectorWorks, with built-in Adobe technology, helps make it happen for us, " says Tom Greggs, principal, Greggs Building Design. "DXF and DWG-based files received from others have created frequent problems for us. Our engineers often use fonts that are not in our system, or their special nested symbols don't scale correctly, or line weights need attention.

With PDF files, none of this is an issue, and we find ourselves simply importing and placing those PDF files directly onto our VectorWorks sheets with no issues concerning translation. We now email PDF documents to clients and contractors on a regular basis. This allows us to gain quick approval, despite a client being halfway across the country or a contractor needing clarification on a detail. And plan set distribution has become virtually paperless, as we give our builders and owners the option of sending PDF plan sets directly from us to their preferred printing service. We have also begun archiving plan set sheets in PDF for every project."

The use of PDF allows for shorter planning cycles, while at the same time reducing project costs. In addition, the use of PDF virtually guarantees a reliable exchange of information in technical project teams, since drawings and models can be protected from unauthorized access and confidential data cannot be misused.

"Adobe and Nemetschek share a vision for Adobe PDF as a key component of, and unifying format for, AEC document processes," says Tom Hale, senior vice president, Knowledge Worker Solutions Business Unit, Adobe. "By this strategic alliance, we enable our combined customers to realize even greater value from PDF in the form of more efficient communication processes."

Read more about how London-based VectorWorks firm Media Synthesis Ltd. has incorporated the use of VectorWorks' Adobe PDF support into its workflow in the case study, "Finding a Better Way to Work with VectorWorks Adobe PDF Support," at download.nemetschek.net