Classification Management is a strategy to classify the built environment. Autodesk Classification Manager for Revit helps support the use of classification systems during design, construction, and operations.
There are multiple Classification Management systems used all around the world. The most common ones are the following:

  1. MasterFormat
    A master list for organizing construction work results, requirements, products, and activities. It is mostly used in bidding and specifications.
  2. UniFormat
    It is used for arranging construction information, organized around the physical parts of a facility known as functional elements, and mainly used for cost estimates.
  3. Uniclass
    It is used for all aspects of the design and construction process. In particular, for organizing library materials and structuring product literature and project information.
  4. OmniClass
    It is used for organization, sorting, and retrieval of product information for all objects in the built environment in the project lifecycle.

Why Is It Important?

The activities conducted throughout the lifecycle of any facility generate an enormous quantity of data that needs to be stored, retrieved, communicated, and used by all parties involved. Building Information Modeling” (BIM) technologies and construction practices have not only increased the amount and detail of data generated and exchanged but have also further raised expectations about its use and value as an asset.

This increase in the amount and types of information generated, and the AEC industry’s subsequent reliance on it, demands an organizational standard that can address the full scope of this information. This organizational standard will enable and add certainty to information communicated between parties separated by miles, countries, or continents. Industry organizations have begun to realize that a greater degree of harmonization in classifying information is now necessary and possible.

This harmonization and reuse of information for multiple purposes is at the heart of the value and cost savings presented by Building Information Models. Standardizing the presentation of such information improves communication among all parties involved in construction projects. This helps the project team deliver structures to owners according to their requirements, timelines, and budgets.

How Are Classification Systems Used in the Industry?

Each of the three typical project stakeholders has different goals for classification
systems:

  1. Owners use classifications to organize data for facility & asset management, development planning, and cost estimates.
  2. Contractors use classifications for construction management, scheduling, and cost estimates.
  3. Architects and Engineers use classifications to generate project specifications.

Each project is different and has different needs. For one project, multiple classifications may be used and all elements may be classified. More often, only one or two classification systems are used and only some elements are classified, depending on the needs for the project, the data to be collected for the database, and the effort involved.

BIM data can also include non-object attributes which may be added for information at the project or facility level. It can be as simple as a value for an attribute in a database.

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