Streamlining the process for specifying operable walls


Advanced Equipment Corporation in Fullerton, CA is a fifty year-old manufacturer of industrial operable walls, used in hotels, convention centers, educational facilities and elsewhere.

There is a significant amount of paperwork an architectural spec writer needs to put together for designing and planning a large industrial facility. Even for specifying an operable wall, this often involves researching dozens of different parts and options that they may want to include, and making phone calls or looking through books to obtain drawings and technical information needed to put together their spec. Frank Manning of Advanced Equipment’s sales team set out to streamline the process.

Web Application

Figure 1 - sample DWSpec web form


From years of experience in the industry, Frank realized that the process of choosing all of the options for an operable wall, as well as shopping around all the different manufacturers of them, was a time consuming process both for the architect and the sales person. He reasoned that a web application could be written that would allow the architect to choose all of the options they want for each wall in their project, and produce a spec for them in Microsoft Word format, that they could copy and integrate into their larger document. He hired to write the software.

Figure 1 shows one of the online forms we developed as part of the “DWSpec” application. It is written in VB.NET, and allows any prospective customers of Advanced Equipment to fully specify all of the options they want for all of the walls in their project, prior to even contacting Advanced’s sales team. Then, if they wish to receive their report in Microsoft Word format, they fill out a quick online form which includes their contact information, and the report is Emailed to them. Capturing this contact information also allows Advanced’s sales team to follow up with them afterwards.

Net Benefits

With the help of, Advanced Equipment is the only manufacturer of operable walls that has an online spec writer. This saves the potential customer time, and even at times eliminates the need for the architect to hire an outside spec writing agency. The benefits to the customer encourage doing business with Advanced over the competition. And by having the architect or spec writer do the legwork ahead of time with the online web application, the sales team saves a tremendous amount of time and data entry on their end. By the time the sales call is made, all of the pertinent information is already entered into the database.