Useful Links

The following resources are organized according to the framework of our business model:

  • National Master Specifications (NMS)The most comprehensive master specification system in Canada serving as a framework for writing construction project specifications. The NMS is a reference document containing approximately 750 master specifications in both English and French. Each section is designed to be edited from the original master to produce a project specific document. National Research Council of Canada (NRC) has assumed ownership of the NMS from the original authors at Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC).
  • Canadian Master Specification (CMS)A full sized master specification system, oriented to medium and large construction containing approximately 600 master specifications. CMS was first introduced in 1977 under the name of CONSPEC. Canada'a first master specification system, preceding the National Master Specification (NMS) by one year.
  • Construction Specifications Institute (CSI): An individual membership technical society and master specifications writing organization designed for the private sector whose mission is to advance building information management and education of project teams to improve facility performance. Its members consist of more than 13,000 volunteers, including specifiers, architects, engineers, contractors, facility managers, product representatives, and manufacturers dedicated to the development of specifications best practices, promulgating standards/formats, professional education, and CSI certification programs.
  • Construction Specifications Canada (CSC): CSC (Construction Specifications Canada) is a national multi-disciplinary, non-profit association with chapters across Canada. CSC is committed to ongoing development and delivery of quality education programs, publications and services for the betterment of the construction community.
  • Compliant Document Review (CDR) Program for Guide Specifications
    The CDR program is a structured program for reviewing manufacturer guide specifications for conformance with the CSI formats and guidelines.
  • SpecMarket.comCSC and BSD have established a strategic, North American alliance to better serve the construction industry with up-to-date and accurate specification content, time-saving software, and educational resources. 
  • ARCOM MasterSpec: MasterSpec® is a product of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), a resource for producing specifications in a three-part CSI-format. Over 800 sections organized into 16 practice-specific libraries.

Best-Available-Technologies (BAT):

        Built Environment

  • Sweets Network:National catalogue available online from McGraw-Hill Construction. Product Information for Design and Construction Professionals: Building Materials Information, Manufacturers, Computer-Aided Design (CAD), Building Information Modeling (BIM), Specifications and Catalogs (organized by MasterFormat Divisions and Sections - see link to MasterFormat under Best Practices heading below)
  • Comprehensive building product information website: CAD drawings, BIM content, 3-part CSI specifications, building product and material manufacturers, ARCAT's SpecWizard® (creates complete 3-part CSI construction product specifications with your direction), catalogs and product brochures, product directory for architects, videos highlighting manufacturer's innovative building products

        Information Technology

  • NBS: a technology platform for the construction industry which provides toos to create specifications, find products and develop digital models.
  • Innovative Technology Inc. (ITI)Provides Canadian software specifically for the Architectural, Engineering, and Construction industries. ITI's advanced software products are used for construction specification writing.
  • Autodesk: Industry standard suite of software including BIM, CAD, BuildingConnected, and PlanGrid softwares.
  • R: a free software environment for statistical computing and graphics
  • ESRI: Industry leader in proprietary GIS software in particular the ArcGIS suite of software including ArcGIS for AutoCAD and Arc GIS for Home Use
Highly Qualified Personnel (HQP):
  • Linked-In: is a business-oriented networking resource.
  • Classification Standards for HQP (the links below are for .zip files containing tables listed below):
  • CSI Certification Programs:
  • Project Management Institute (PMI): PMI global standards provide guidelines, rules and characteristics for project, program and portfolio management. The world's leading not-for-profit professional membership association for the project, program and portfolio management profession.
    • Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM)®
    • Project Management Professional (PMP)®
    • Program Management Professional (PgMP)®
    • Portfolio Management Professional (PfMP)®
    • PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP)SM
    • PMI Risk Management Professional (PMI-RMP)®
    • PMI Scheduling Professional (PMI-SP)®
    • PMI Professional in Business Analysis (PMI-PBA)®
  • USGBC's Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI) LEED Accreditation:
    • LEED Accredited Professional (LEED AP)
    • LEED Green Associate
    • LEED Fellow
  • Gold Seal Certification: Since 1991, the Gold Seal Certification program has been the industry’s most trusted, valued and reliable certification for the management of construction. Today, more than 8,000 construction professionals have been recognized as Gold Seal Certified. Learn more about Gold Seal Certification and find the path to certification that’s right for you. If you are already certified, find out what you need to upgrade your credentials to Professional, Gold Seal Certified (P.GSC).
Authoritative/Relevant Organizations:
  • Canadian Home Builders' Association (CHBA)
  • Canadian Manufactured Housing Institute (CMHI)
  • Canadian Wood Council (CWC)The Canadian Wood Council represents the Canadian wood products industry through a national federation of associations. The Mission of the Council is to expand market access and increase demand for Canadian wood products through its work in codes, standards, regulations and education.
  • International Log Builders' Association:
  • Modular Building Institute
  • Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE): IEEE's core purpose is to foster technological innovation and excellence for the benefit of humanity.

Best Practices & Standards:

Classification Standards

  • MasterFormat 2018: A system of 6- and 8-digit numbers and titles for organizing construction information (cost estimates, details, notes, product data & specifications) into a standard order/sequence of 50 Divisions. Jointly developed by CSI and CSC and the basis of OmniClass Table 22: Work Results. MasterFormat is the specifications-writing standard for most commercial building design and construction projects in North America. It lists titles and section numbers for organizing data about construction requirements, products, and activities. By standardizing such information, MasterFormat facilitates communication among architects, specifiers, contractors and suppliers, which helps them meet building owners' requirements, timelines and budgets.
  • ASTM E1557 -09(2015) UNIFORMAT IIStandard Classification for Building Elements and Related Sitework. For estimating and construction project management. This standard provides a common structure linking the building program, specifications, and estimates through its classification for building elements and related sitework. Its integration in the design process results in improved communications and coordination among all project participants, an accelerated design, and significantly increased productivity.
  • GreenFormat: a standardized structure for organizing sustainable information elements associated with materials, products, systems and technologies used in the built environment.
  • Preliminary Project Description (PPD) Format: A guide for developing Preliminary Project Descriptions.
  • SectionFormat / PageFormat: The industry's 3-part format for specs.
  • OmniClass: Comprehensive classification system used to organize all aspects of the built environment. Derived from internationally accepted standards developed by International Organization of Standards (ISO).

Certification Programs

  • Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED): a green building certification program that recognizes best-in-class building strategies and practices.
  • Green Globes System: The Green Building Initiative (GBI) ANSI technical committee was formed in early 2006 and the official Green Globes ANSI standard was published in 2010. Green Globes is operated by the Green Building Initiative (GBI) in the US, and the version for existing buildings in Canada is operated by BOMA Canada under the name 'BOMA BESt'.The Green Globes system is used by large developers and property management companies, including, the Canadian federal government, which has adopted the program for its entire real estate portfolio.
    • BOMA BESt 3.0:  Canada’s largest environmental assessment and certification program for existing buildings. It is a unique, voluntary program designed by industry for industry; it provides owners and managers with a consistent framework for assessing the environmental performance and management of existing buildings of all sizes. BOMA BEST Sustainable Buildings certification recognizes excellence in energy and environmental management and performance in commercial real estate. The Program is managed by the Building Owners and Managers Association of Canada (BOMA Canada) and delivered by the eleven Local BOMA Associations throughout Canada.
    • Green Building Initiative: The Green Building Initiative® (GBI) seeks to be innovative and provide responsive customer service as we collectively move the needle toward a sustainable built environment. We recognize that credible and practical green building approaches for commercial and governmental construction are critical in this effort. Responding to the reality that one size does not fit all in sustainable improvements, we sought to create a more tailored approach that takes into account the building’s type, purpose, and occupants. A nonprofit organization, the GBI is dedicated to accelerating the adoption of building practices that result in energy-efficient, healthier and environmentally sustainable buildings.

International Standards Organizations

  • ASTM International: is one of the world's largest, non-for-profit, standards development organizations - a globally recognized leader in the development and delivery of international voluntary consensus standards (formerly known as the American Society for Testing and Materials.
  • CSA GroupCSA Group is a global organization dedicated to safety, social good, and sustainability, and a leader in safety and environmental certification around the world including Canada, the U.S, Europe, and Asia. Our mandate is to hold the future to a higher standard.

National Standards Organizations

  • American National Standards Institute (ANSI): is a private, non-profit organization that administers and coordinates the U.S. voluntary standardization and conformity assessment system. In other words, ANSI provides a forum for development of American national standards.
  • American Water Works Association (AWWA): with over 50,000 members, AWWA is the largest nonprofit, scientific and educational association dedicated to managing and treating water, offer education to water professionals, advocate for safe and sustainable water, collect and disseminate water-related knowledge, and create volunteering opportunities. 
  • Canadian General Standards Board (CGSB): The Canadian General Standards Board (CGSB) is a federal government organization that offers client-centred, comprehensive standards development and conformity assessment services in support of the economic, regulatory, procurement, health, safety and environmental interests of our stakeholders — government, industry and consumers.
  • International Code Council (ICC): member-focused association dedicated to developing model codes and standards used in the design, build and compliance process to construct safe, sustainable, affordable and resilient structures
  • National Onsite Wastewater Recycling Association (NOWRA)

Green Building Councils

  • World Green Building Council: network of national green building councils in more than one hundred countries, making it the world’s largest international organisation influencing the green building marketplace
  • Canadian Green Building Council (CaGBC):The Canada Green Building Council is a not-for-profit, national organization that has been working since 2002 to advance green building and sustainable community development practices in Canada.
  • US Green Building Council: (USGBC): committed to a prosperous, healthy and sustainable future through cost-efficient and energy-saving green buildings - well known for it's LEED green building certification program
        Passive House Resources

        Health, Safety, Security and Environment

        6S (an innovation by Molson Construction)
  • 6S: Based on the 5S process improvement system with the additional 6th pillar for Safety. Successful implementation of the 6S system facilitates compliance with OSHA Standard 1910.22 which addresses workplace 'housekeeping'.
    1. Sort – The sort step is where you remove everything from the workplace that is not used or needed to do the work.
    2. Straighten – The straighten step is based on the foundation “A place for everything and everything in its place”.
    3. Shine – The shine step is about cleaning the workplace and keeping it clean.
    4. Standardize – The standardize step is about making the 5S System’s first three steps part of the daily routine.
    5. Sustain – The sustain step is about changing the culture and creating the discipline needed to sustain the 5S System.
    6. Safety - Last but not certainly not least, the 5S System must be compatible and integrated with Health and Safety rules, regulations, policies and procedures!

        Business and Management

  • Conference Board of Canada: The foremost independent, evidence-based, not-for-profit applied research organization in Canada. Dedicated to building a better future for Canadians by making Canada's economy and society more dynamic and competitive. A resource for high quality organizational performance research, including (but not limited to) research in the realms of Human Resource Management (HRM); leadership and governance; organizational excellence; and Risk Management (RM).
  • Drucker Institute:
  • United Nations Standard Products and Services Codes: An open, global, multi-sector standard for efficient, accurate classification of products and services. Offers a single global classification system that can be integrated with enterprise resource management software.
  • ISNetWorld: A subscription based service that streamlines the contractor qualification process. Sub-contractors or vendors subscribe and submit key pieces of safety information such as safety programs, EHS forms, insurance certificates, environmental performance and procurement information onto the ISN database. ISN’s EHS professionals verify this information and provide sub-contractors with assistance in meeting the pre-qualification requirements, for example by providing tools to help them improve their internal policies and standards. The ISN database allows hiring companies to assess information relevant to their sub-contractor pre-qualification policies and standards.
  • Business Intelligence:
    • Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
    • Sales: Implements functions of order placement, order scheduling, shipping and invoicing
  • E-Commerce:
    • Procurement / Supplier Relationship Management (SRM)
    • Production (PLM): Helps in planning and optimizing the manufacturing capacity and material resources
  • Distribution / Supply Chain Management (SCM)
  • Accounting: Financial Management and Regulatory Compliance
  • Enterprise Asset Management (EAM):
    • Human Resources Management (HRM) 
    • Corporate Performance and Governance
  • Product Life Cycle Management (LCM)
  • Health, Safety, Security and Environment (HSSE)
  • Information Management
    • Enterprise Content Management (ECM)
      • Enterprise Metadata Strategy
    • Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP)
      • SAP: market leader in enterprise application software for businesses of all sizes
      • BST Global
      • Deltek Vision
      • Dynamics 365
Construction Material Standards, Laws and Codes
  • Codes Canada Publications (National Research Council Canada): publishes the Codes and ensures that these national models are responsive to new technologies, materials, construction practices, research, social policy, and the changing needs of Canadian society.
  • Canadian Construction Materials Centre (CCMC)operates within the National Research Council of Canada (NRC), offers a national evaluation service for all types of innovative building construction materials, products, systems and services. CCMC evaluations are supported by the latest technical research and expertise and are based on the requirements of the National Building Code of Canada or Provincial/Territorial Building Codes.
  • Underwriters Laboratories of Canada (ULC)an independent product safety testing, certification and inspection organization. We have tested products for public safety for 90 years and we are accredited by the Standards Council of Canada.

Canadian Construction Industry Useful Links
Engineering Tools
  • Engineers Canada: the national organization of the 12 engineering regulators that license the Canada's 280,000 members of the profession.
  • National CAD Standard: A standard for organizing drawing information.
  • Institute for BIM in Canada: To lead and facilitate the coordinated use of BIM in the design, construction, and management of the Canadian built environment.
  • The Engineering Institute of Canada: Mission is to - Develop and promote continuing education. Initiate and facilitate interdisciplinary activities and services. Lead member societies in defining and building the future of engineering. Advocate the values and benefits of engineering.