Posted by Hiral Patel on May 22nd, 2017
Building Information Modeling (BIM) is the boon to construction industry. Well, this would be true only if EPC firms and general contractors would start BIM journey in their building and infrastructure construction projects early during concept evolution and let it last until the demolition. BIM being boon would only be a reality when architectural consultants use them not only for design visualization, but also resolving their inter-team conflicts, when structural engineers not only use BIM platforms for 3D modeling but also for BOMs and other steel detailing works in project.
So, why is it the case that only a part of AEC professionals deploy BIM throughout building construction projects? There can be three alternate reasoning for this situation to exist:
The first two alternatives, in fact, fall into weighing the priorities to educate ourselves and that responsibilities lies with the EPC firms or general contractors. This leaves us with the third reason for not adopting BIM during vivid stages. The misconceptions should be eradicated to leverage BIM exactly for what it was designed. This is an attempt to debunk some of the myths about BIM that propagate across the AEC industry. Below is a list of four major and evil myths about BIM that prevails and are seriously harming the industry.
There’s a wide misconception within the AEC industry about considering BIM as a new term for 3D modeling. This isn’t true however. BIM is a process to develop dynamic 3D model to work in a common data environment and approach any construction project through collaborative workflows. It essentially coordinates information at various stages of project, and makes design and construction processes seamless.
Since several federal governments are keen on mandating BIM on all public projects, contractors and construction firms are finding an easy way out of accepting that following one standard across the project is BIM level 2, instead of going through changes to adopt new technology. However, the entire truth is a bigger picture. BIM maturity levels in implementation and its usage ensure the adoption level. Working in a common data environment for BIM 3D, 4D, and 5D will mark the beginning of BIM Level 2 adoption and not just one standard.
All the public infrastructure development projects need BIM. Actually, all the infrastructure development projects need BIM is also equally true. Achieving BIM level 2 for their organizations can give a fairly good advantage to construction firms in terms of remaining profitable even while working on private projects. If the fact that BIM is nothing but a digital environment to reduce inefficiencies and waste in construction is accepted, then its adoption comes automatically, irrespective of projects nature – public or private.
To find the route to escape, several small contractors are of the opinion that BIM is not needed for their firm as their organizational structure is pretty straight forward and that BIM will only complicate it. However, problems arise when these same organizations undertake projects of multiple complexities. BIM is actually the route to solution. Its implementation is dependent on how complex the project is, and not on the organizational structure. It is vital that all organizations demonstrate BIM capabilities and not only larger firms. BIM won’t disturb the organization’s structure; it in fact will enhance the project outcomes and contractor’s deliverables.
BIM has been launched with a clear need for reassurance and validating healthy market competition of various construction firms to encourage digital medium for building construction and infrastructure development projects. Debunking the myths will only open up new avenues for contractors, EPC firms and every AEC professional to work with higher efficiencies and adopt it to stay profitable.
About Author: Hiral Patel is a news editor and has been contributing to the AEC industry since last 7 years. She mainly writes about the application of BIM across Architecture, MEP and Structural sectors. Her focus is towards encouraging construction companies, sub-contractors and architects to adopt right technologies to improve efficiency and profitability.