Most in The Biz simply refer to specifications as “specs” (pronounced spehks). Our industry is just lazy that way. The purpose of specs not only is to tell the construction company what kind of products to use and how we expect them to use them, but also to (hopefully) prevent legal problems down the line. In our ultra-litigious society, the latter has become so critical that people make their living as Specification Writers. Specs can be incredibly detailed and precise on large projects (usually producing a large “spec book” in addition to the drawings), and fairly simple and general on others (either included on the drawings themselves or on an accompanying piece of regular paper). It all depends on the scope of the project and the relationship you have with the contractor, though you still need to cover yourself. We’ll cover the details on specs (i.e base-bid, descriptive, equal, open, performance, prescriptive, proprietary, etc.) in the future.