Putting Building Information Modeling Fundamentals in Place

By Stefan Mordue, Paul Swaddle, David Philp

You want to get your business fighting fit and BIM ready, but getting the fundamentals right is all in the preparation. BIM allows you to create new processes and workflows and work in a collaborative way on your projects. BIM is useful throughout the whole project timeline from concept stage, construction, and then over the assets operational life including eventual demolition or reuse. Before you start with BIM, ask yourself the following questions:

  • What’s wrong with what you’re doing already?

  • What practical things will you have to do to implement BIM processes?

  • What aspects of software, hardware and your projects do you need to focus on?

Consider the following BIM fundamentals:

  • Know your starting position. Check where you and your organization sit and what maturity level you think you reach. Maturity models are a good benchmark to use to understand your capability and to set a clear target for when you need to be BIM compliant.

  • Provide the right structure. If your approach to BIM is going to have longevity, then it needs a strong foundation and a secure superstructure. Think of your framework as forming the bedrock, establishing your methodology and deciding on the right procurement routes. Your foundations are the processes you’ll use for information management during the capital delivery and operational stages of the project lifecycle. Your superstructure is how you’ll use, apply, and share data-rich information.

  • Prepare for BIM technology. BIM is a process that’s driven by technology, and so you need to be prepared for how and when you implement upgrades. Consider software and hardware requirements, but also any training needs that your business may have. And finally, be mindful and have a plan of who’ll manage technology, when, and how. A good example is thinking about where you store your data, because cloud technology becoming more commonplace creates issues like data security.