2020: UNIFI’s Year in Review

The end of the year always invites reflection, and despite this year’s uncertainty, 2020 is no exception! What a riveting year it has been. Amidst unprecedented times and a global pandemic, we were more grateful than ever to be the only cloud-based BIM content management and project health platform, empowering our users to seamlessly transition to remote work and access their content anytime, anywhere – without VPN or IT assistance.  

In addition, we were hard at work developing several features based on feedback from our customers and Executive Advisory Board, all of which served to help our users save more time, money, and gain increased efficiency. Here are the UNIFI platform developments released this year that we’re the proudest of:

•Automatically Generated Preview ImagesThe first feature we’re most proud of in 2021 is one our customers and Executive Advisory Board were particularly excited about, Automatically Generated Preview Images. Prior to this release, to get nice looking preview images, admins would have to spend hours setting up specific views and/or capturing images manually for each Revit family.  With UNIFI‘s Automatically Generated Preview images, admins can simply configure settings in the UNIFI Web Portal, and preview images will be created automatically.  We’re proud to save admins lots of time and greatly improve our end-users experience. 

•Saved Search Updates

To improve user experience, we rolled out updates to our Saved Search feature in early 2021.  In addition to a more streamlined and simplified UI, this update added all the robust options present in our standard search to saved searches, including selecting search fields and filtering by Revit Parameters. This rollout has enhanced users’ workflows around saved searches, a feature that is extensively used by UNIFI customers to help their users find the right content more quickly.

•Autodesk 2021 Support 

Within 8 weeks of Autodesk’s 2021 release, we rolled out UNIFI support for Revit 2021 and AutoCAD 2021. With this update, users utilizing AutoCAD and Revit versions 2016 and later were able to take full advantage of UNIFI. On top of rapid support for Autodesk’s releases, UNIFI is proud to be the exclusive platform to offer versioning that automatically upgrades and aligns your BIM content to the latest version of Revit.

•Project Analytics Data CollectionIn both our first and final product releases of 2020, we improved Project Analytics data collection speed and overall user experience.  Admins now have complete control over the data collection process at both the company and project level.  This includes complete transparency into the average collection times, down to each individual data type. We also implemented a progress bar that displays while data is being collected during the sync process.  The display of this progress bar is also configurable by admins. 

•Platform Enhancements

We made several performance enhancements that resulted in a better user experience across the platform.  Most notably, we improved search speed by more than 70%.  We also updated our Shared Parameter Management feature to handle large shared parameter files (up to 4MB).  In addition to enhancing these features and other aspects of our platform, we solved various bugs throughout the year. To see the full list of bug fixes, please check out our release notes. 

Looking Ahead

As we enter 2021, our product roadmap is more exciting than ever and filled with some game changing features. You have a lot to look forward to, including:

•Search Enhancements

As we add more and more data to search, we want to make sure we are providing the best possible user experience.  We have several enhancements planned that will improve the overall technical performance of search, optimize the relevance of search results, as well as simplify the user interface.  

•SSO Enhancements

We’re adding SSO SCIM features for automatic provisioning of users and user groups, enhancing our current SSO functionality and reducing the amount of manual user management required.

•Type Catalog Updates

As of Revit 2021, type catalogs may no longer be compatible with previous versions of Revit, as Autodesk has updated several database identifiers for units of measurement in Revit 2021.  For type catalogs that contain units of measurement that have been changed, a separate type catalog must be maintained (one for Revit 2021 and one for Revit 2020 and previous).  We’re in the process of updating the UNIFI platform to support this change.  

•Isolated Libraries

We’re adding the ability for admins to create isolated libraries that can house content independent of other libraries.  In other words, files added to an isolated library will not override files with the same name in other libraries.  Examples of use cases for this feature are sandbox libraries for vetting content, as well as project-specific libraries.

 …And much more!

To conclude, we want to send you our sincerest thanks for helping make 2020 a year of growth at UNIFI. During a year of such uncertainty, we were humbled to play a key role in facilitating our customers’ transition to remote work and to work with so many new firms who found themselves in need of a cloud-based source of truth for their BIM content.

UNIFI was founded by engineers in the industry who understand the struggles our customers face, firsthand. As such, our foremost objective is to journey with our users in their BIM content management and project health strategies, helping you accelerate project velocity. If there’s anything else you’d like to see in the future of UNIFI, please don’t hesitate to let us know, as we use your feedback to inform and prioritize our product roadmap.

Before you go, we’d love to hear from you in the comments below. What was your favorite feature of 2020 and what are you most excited to see come in 2021?

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