Technical Drawings & Construction/Development Software

If you're trying to break into development, is it helpful when a candidate already knows or understands how to read technical drawings like blueprints for architecture, landscape, electrical, plumbing, etc.?

What about software like: BlueBeam, Revit/Revu, Primavera or AutoCAD? Would knowing even a little bit be helpful? I've seen some classes online and thought about taking it as something to add to my skillset.

I've been working on the lend side and asset management, so my skill set does not touch much on development or construction.

Comments (8)

Jan 6, 2021 - 6:55pm

Yes, you need to be able to read construction drawings. I wouldn't worry too much about AutoCAD and Revit. Those are expensive software packages with steep learning curves, and intended for architects and engineers who produce construction docs. As a developer you only need to be able to read the drawings, in pdf form or in paper, and mark them up. Focus less on learning programs than on understanding the actual contents of the drawings.

Jan 7, 2021 - 12:58am

Above is right. No MD in development knows how to truly navigate CAD/Revit/etc. Know how to interpret the drawings (legends/keys/sections/elevations/etc.) and you will be fine. Bluebeam is just a tool to enable team coordination on comments to drawings...doesn't actually change the drawings, just how they are marked up and shared. 

  • Analyst 3+ in RE - Comm
Jan 8, 2021 - 5:05pm

OP here. I originally started this thread because I saw udemy had a huge section on these topics, and some of the courses for it were only $10. The construction section is pretty extensive there, I'm sure you could find something that could fit, or even just Youtube.

Here's one for example 

Most Helpful
Jan 7, 2021 - 10:26am

Bluebeam is fantastic for marking up drawings and other PDFs, but it's not exactly complicated software. You can learn what you need to know in an hour and google the rest. 

Reading drawings is a key tool, but at no point will you ever be creating drawings, so there's no need to learn Revit or CAD. 

Remember, as a developer, you are conducting the orchestra. You don't need to know how to play the trumpet - you need to know how the trumpet should sound when it is played, when it should be played, and typically how much the trumpet costs compared to budget. 

Commercial Real Estate Developer

  • 2
Jan 7, 2021 - 12:36pm

All you need is bluebeam to read and annotate on drawings. I use it every day. Very helpful tool. I can even block out high level site plans when we are sizing up a potential deal before engaging with an architect for a real site plan. Scale on google earth and it gets you close enough to underwrite a high level YOC. 

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