File Sharing for Architects

Architecture is a field that greatly benefits from file sharing technologies - they allow for secure collaboration with clients and coworkers, greatly speed up design briefs and reduce project costs (like courier fees). Internet file sharing lets plans be accessed (by authorized users) from any location (even in the field) without needing to set up (and maintain) expensive IT infrastructure.

File Sharing and Collaboration

A good file sharing service makes it easy for team members to share design files that are too large to email back and forth. It saves on setting complex file systems or maintaining servers, and should track file uploads and downloads from the service (including who transferred the file and when) so that the workflow runs more smoothly. It also adds an additional “Safety net”, since the file is saved both at the firm and in the Cloud. This being the case, firms looking for a file sharing solution would be better served by a service that includes a great deal of storage (the amount needed could be determined by the size of the files and the number of projects the firm is / will be working on). It is also important to find out how long files are stored on the system, as some services delete them after a few weeks (or less!)

Share Files with your Clients

Once a design is ready for client review, sending it to them can be as easy as sending an email. These emails include a link to a Web page where the clients can directly download the file through their web browser - thus avoiding the file size limits imposed by email. The clients can then download the file and make any suggestions or changes they see fit. If the file sharing service allows uploads from non-members, the client can then navigate to the architectural firm’s upload page and send the file back. Unlike email, this process is nearly instantaneous, so the file is available as soon as the upload is complete.

How Secure is File Sharing?

Most companies are keen on keeping their information private (and for good reason). Thankfully, Internet-based file sharing is much more secure than email…many such services include at least password-protection, and several include encrypted uploads and downloads at no additional cost to their users. This is a boon to architectural firms in particular as it helps ensure that the plans and drawings they share with their clients are not accessible to the wider world (or competitors).

So there you have it: cheaper than couriers. Easier than FTP. More secure than email. For architects looking for an easier way to collaborate and work with clients, online file sharing is a good bet - but don’t take my work for it: sign up for a 30 day free trial and find out for yourself!

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