As eTool use expands into large scale projects, you may find yourself creating designs that contain multiple functions (or assets) in the software. Depending on how this data is organised and aggregated, the .CSV import process for these large projects can take quite some time to complete.
Usually the main reason for this is the duplication of data when generating material´s take off information from BIM software tools or highly detailed cost plans. For example, multiple entries for 50MPa concrete foundations for different areas when it would have been simpler to enter it as one template in the design.
eTool suggests that the data is aggregated before imported into the software. This can be done for example using a pivot table in a spreadsheet or as per the video tutorial below.
Material quantities should be added for each unique combination of:
- Template Name
- Template Unit
- Asset ID (function name)
After the data is aggregated, complete the .CSV import process as normal and match with the appropriate eTool template.This aggregation process will add the material quantities for all templates with the same material type and unit that belongs to the same Asset ID (or function).
In case you have various functions (or Asset IDs) in your design, import the functions first using the Bulk Import option and add a column in your .CSV file with the asset ID so all the templates imported will automatically be assigned to the correct asset ID.
This data cleansing process will speed up the importing process, make the model much easier to navigate and use, and will also save a lot of time later on. However do take into consideration that there are some situations when you don’t want to aggregate things into one template entry. For example sometimes aggregating a particular item into one lump entry may make it more difficult/complicated to model certain improvement recommendations. Categorisation is also important so only aggregate items that have the same category (substructure, superstructure, finishes etc) and sub-category (foundation, ground floor, frame etc). As you become more proficient and experienced with using eTool, you will learn and develop modelling techniques in anticipation of avoiding these issues when building your designs.
If you need assistance with this process, please feel free to reach out to the Software Support team.