Software Sharing Standards Could Save Construction Industry $15.8 Billion

September 28, 2010

The Associated General Contractors of America today released new standards that will allow sharing of data and key information between different construction programs. This new tool, known as agcXML, is expected to save construction companies up to the $15.8 billion a year currently spent in lost productivity because many construction software programs are not currently compatible.

"The most expensive walls in some construction projects are the ones that divide essential software programs," said Stephen E. Sandherr, the association’s chief executive officer. "This new tool will deliver significant savings by making the industry more efficient and productive."

Data that architects, engineers, contractors, subcontractors, material suppliers and building owners typically exchange during the building design and construction process is still commonly shared in paper documents, or their electronic equivalent, which typically leads to costly delays and inefficiencies. The new agcXML will allow all parties to exchange information more efficiently, including documents such as owner/contractor agreements, schedules of values and requests for information, Sandherr said.

Sandherr noted that while the association developed agcXML to meet the needs of its 33,000 member companies, the tool is available to anyone at no cost to support the exchange of construction data.  He added that the agcXML standards will remain the property of AGC and will be coordinated with other data format standard efforts to ensure compatibility worldwide.

The agcXML tool is the latest in a series of innovative products the association is making available to support the nation’s construction industry, Sandherr said.  Later this year, for example, the association will begin offering the first-ever curriculum for construction professional to learn how to take advantage of business information modeling technology. He added that thousands of companies have taken advantage of the common contract documents, known as ConsensusDOCS, the association has made available for more than a year now as part of a 22-organization effort.

For more information about agcXML, please visit