Evolving customer demands and an increase in the need for bespoke, unique projects, bring new challenges and complexity to the construction industry.
The creation and renovation of today’s built environment is complex in nature. Changes and delays form an inevitable part of almost every project, with a lack of shared information as the common, underlying issue in many cases. Governments and contractors are turning to Building Information Modelling (BIM) to help solve this problem.
Even the European Union (EU) has identified a more digitally-minded construction sector as being highly beneficial to improve the quality, sustainability and value of our built environment.
As stated in Unlocking the Value of BIM, “The most common cause of the challenges that delay and derail projects is information flow: inconsistencies in what the contributing parties are working towards and trying to deliver. This could be design flaws that are discovered late, budgeting not corresponding to plans or problems with operations and maintenance integration. Too often projects result in multiple trips back to the drawing board with significant financial implications for the client.”
“Building Information Modelling was conceived to address and eliminate many of these challenges. The principle is creating a precise reference point for all details of a building at all stages, this often starts in the form of a 3D prototype, overlaid with scheduling (4D) and estimating (5D) data. Having this data at the start of a project, enables accurate planning and forecasting, eliminating errors and risks. Then, when used throughout the lifecycle of construction and continually updated to reflect the actual progress, BIM gives all parties access to accurate information on the fly which enables better and faster decision making. Created and used in this way, BIM becomes the glue that holds design and construction together.”
Whilst I’ve seen an increase across EMEA in the number of companies implementing BIM processes, quite often BIM will only be used at the start of a project as a standalone resource for one party (lonely BIM). This benefits that individual company, but with no overarching project strategy, it can lead to isolated pockets of information, which can cause errors and delays downstream.
The true benefits of BIM will only be achieved when there is buy in from top to bottom, starting with the employee making clear their ultimate requirements. BIM can then be implemented throughout the entire life-cycle of a project and continually updated by all parties to reflect the progress of the asset, providing a true digital representation.
Giving all parties controlled access to relevant, updated and accurate information, will enable decisions to be made much faster, preventing delays in projects.
To discover the true benefits of BIM, read ‘Unlocking the value of BIM‘ – a whitepaper from Leica Geosystems.