Architectural Technologists

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you place people into our office? Will my drawings be used in other projects for other firms?
How do you charge for your services? How do you communicate with the consultant team?
What type of projects do you do? How do we communicate with you?
How much lead-time do I need to give you to start a project? Why work with Parallel?
What platform do you work on? How do I access my drawings?
Do you work in your standards or ours? At what point do I hire you?
Will my drawings be secure?
Q: Can you place people into our office?
A: At Parallel, we find it works best – for both us and our clients – to function similar to an architectural office in concept. We have multiple teams of people working on many projects at any given time. To ensure we can meet our deadlines and achieve our quality control standards, we prefer to keep our people working in our office. This helps us maintain our high standards for schedule and quality for our clients.
Q: How do you charge for your services?
A: Many projects come to us with a fixed scope of work, which allows us to quantify the time needed to produce the end product. Wherever possible, we provide our clients with a fixed price for the drawing packages we prepare.

Where a fixed scope is difficult to attain for the entire project, we work with our clients to break the project into manageable bites of defined and variable scope items. To remain flexible for our clients, we generally deliver variable scope items on an hourly rate (in line with industry standards).

Q: What type of projects do you do?
A: We tend to define our buildings according to their construction types (e.g. wood or steel frame). We have prepared permit, tender, and construction documents for many types of buildings including wood frame, timber, CIP concrete, tilt and pre-cast concrete, steel frame with masonry and steel stud infill, load bearing masonry, and load bearing steel stud buildings.
Q: How much lead-time do I need to give you to start a project?
A: Our people are busy with project work most of the time. So we do need some lead-time to bring a new project into our system. From the time you hand drawings and/or CAD files over to us, the time needed to begin work on a new project depends on the amount of notice we had to schedule it into our system. With advance notice, we can usually start work immediately when you hand over your files. Without notice, we sometimes need as much as two to three weeks to begin production.
Q: What platform do you work on?
A: Parallel has invested in multiple CAD platforms to provide the widest variety of service possible. We are conversant with AutoCAD, and are well versed in the conversion of files to and from multiple platforms with AutoCAD. We also work in Revit, and our firm is seeking to widen our use of this technology as the demand for it continues to grow.
Q: Do you work in your standards or ours?
A: Over the years, we have seen a wide variety of CAD standards. So we are comfortable adapting to work within your office standards. In the absence of a standard system in your office, we use a simplistic system of layering and colour assignments that are easily understood by anyone in your organization with just a few minutes of instruction. Our system is a derivative of the AIA layering system.
Q: Will my drawings be secure?
A: Yes. Parallel has invested in the latest hardware and software to ensure that our clients’ files remain protected at all times. Our policy is to protect all work on your project that is done on our systems. Our team members are not permitted to take your files off site for work elsewhere without your express permission.
Q: Will my drawings be used in other projects for other firms?
A: We will not reuse someone else’s designs for your project – nor will we give your work to future clients. Naturally our knowledge base grows with each project we work on. But the details we provide for each client are “from scratch” every time. So you can expect to see new details drafted for your work.
Q: How do you communicate with the consultant team?
A: We put a high priority on keeping our clients connected to their projects during production of their drawings. Our preference is to be in contact with both our client and any other consultants so we can coordinate our work efficiently. To ensure our clients stay in the loop – and in charge – all of our communication is done with our clients’ full awareness.
Q: How do we communicate with you?
A: Once our production team starts into a drawing package, we need your help to feed information into the system to maintain a smooth flow of work. We find this works best with a senior project architect in your office acting as the liaison for the duration of the assignment.
Q: Why work with Parallel?
A: Parallel offers many advantages to a variety of firms: For the sole proprietor, we offer the sudden backing of a large office and team. For many small firms, renting space, purchasing equipment and software, and seeking out staff is a daunting task. Then if a project goes into a holding pattern, the cost of this overhead can be overwhelming. Parallel takes away that worry. Our costs to you are bourn by the project. Given adequate notice of a project slow down, it is our responsibility to keep the people busy – not yours. This allows you to focus on getting the project back to life or developing the next project.ยท For larger firms, Parallel offers the opportunity to avoid turning down a client that may push you beyond current capacity. Once your people are back to a normal work volume, we can pass the project back to your office to carry through to completion or you can set your team to work on the next project. In either case, Parallel allows you to focus on project phases that carry on for long duration with fewer people. To fill the gap, we are available to assist with the short duration phases that require larger teams with different specialties.
Q: How do I access my drawings?
A: At the start of your project, we will sit down with you to discuss the deadlines, both internal and external. Then we’ll arrange to have hard copy drawings ready for your review as required throughout the project. Parallel also provides you with access to our secure FTP site to exchange drawings so you and your consultants can access your electronic files at all times.
Q: At what point do I hire you?
A: Parallel can assist you with the development of any phase of a project. We have been involved in drafting projects from the preliminary “sketch” stage to picking up projects after development permit (DP) has already been applied for. We are comfortable preparing your design development, development permit, tender and construction drawings. Of course, the sooner you hire us, the sooner you can tap into our know-how and get into the municipality for permit applications!