Recently, Vectorworks became aware of just how good a fit they are to the house of worship (HOW) market. The software company is a line of industry-specific CAD and BIM solutions that allow designers to advance their ideas from concept through completion.
"We noticed that the house of worship market is very much aligned with what we have to offer," Industry Product Specialist Frank Brault said. "In particular, we bring together features that directly address the needs of a technical staff in large facilities." Along with addressing the needs of large facilities, Brault said Vectorworks also caters to the lighting, sound and AV staff.
Some of the success in discovering the HOW market was a good fit was just from people discovering who they were, Brault explained. And last year, there were several large churches that had signed on with the Vectorworks software. It's a significant market for a company like this, as there are six or seven thousand churches in the United States that serve over 1,000 people. That number doesn't include mosques or other worship facilities.
The Vectorworks software is released on a yearly basis and the 2016 version is set to release this fall. Brault said one of the main things they focus on is the designer. "What we try to do is focus on the needs of the designer while they work," Brault said. "We try to accommodate the work flow and the thought process, which is technical and flexible so they can do different types of thinking." Those types of thinking include "what if" scenarios that designers come across every time they step foot into a new project.
In order to help the whole technical staff of a worship facility, Brault said the software helps people who have to suspend things in their auditoriums and sanctuaries like hanging lights or video displays. "You can document how and where [things go], how much weight something is and what needs to be suspended."
Although this software is very helpful to the designers, the fact that it is not necessarily technical can be a drawback. Brault said because a lot of times the staff and congregation may not be technically trained, despite how motivated they may be, they may not be able to use a professional board. However, "It's not often a challenge because creating a file [with the software] is technical, but using the file is quite a bit easier."
Brault said they can offer a large house of worship market a way to organize their documentation and accommodate the various programs that require changes on a weekly basis. "I believe we have a flexible software that can be used to make the organization of the technical aspects of worship services be successful."