Opinion

Why Small Firms Should Also Invest In BIM?

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June 18, 2015 | Gaurang Trivedi

Essentially everyone, i.e. every firm involved in the business of construction should use BIM – whether big or small. Big firms have bigger projects; they also have more money to invest into latest technology and means of construction, so that they can survive and succeed in the international market place. However smaller firms are still skeptical about investing in BIM.

Let’s Understand Why You Should Decide To Invest In BIM

  • BIM is being implemented and mandated by governments around the world in projects of all sizes. The UK government specifically, has made level 2 BIM mandatory, and by 2016 all public sector projects will be BIM enabled
  • As BIM adoption is a government led change it is not likely to fade away soon. The industry is increasingly adopting BIM.
  • Are you waiting for early adopters to set the stage for you? Then probably when you actually plan to invest in BIM – experience will not be at your side. You may lose out a lot of good opportunities and projects to competitors just because they are more adept and experienced in handling BIM enabled projects.
  • Vertical growth of cities is happening at a faster rate than the horizontal growth. Buildings are rising high and skyscrapers are lining up the city horizons. This means that projects have become complex, and hence using technology to collaborate, coordinate, plan and keep track of activities is of utmost importance.

Using the best software tools for BIM

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Software tools such as Revit, AutoCAD, Navisworks and Building Design Suite (BDS) have become extremely popular amongst the BIM expertsRevit has gained the maximum popularity as the tool allows discipline specific building design and documentation. Revit BIM also helps develop highly detailed construction drawings and schedules. The Revit parametric change engine allows higher levels of coordination as any change made anywhere is automatically coordinated.

Is BIM a good investment for small firms as well?

  • Well, there was a time when people were skeptical about using computers and CAD tools for drafting and developing specification sheets. There was also a time when mobile phones, leave alone a smart phone, was considered a luxury. Today things that were talked about and known as the new age technology then – and also looked at skeptically – have become a part of our life and are used regularly without a mention and without hype.
  • BIM is going through a phase, where although everyone is sure about the profound benefits of BIM, it is still looked at with doubt by smaller firms. Lack of BIM experience and expertise, in addition to the affordability of BIM software and a team that works with BIM is a notable issue.
  • However what small businesses should understand is that, BIM is a great investment. Why? Because in addition to providing them the usual and well known BIM benefits, such as collaboration, coordination and visualization for better project outcomes, BIM adoption now will prepare them for the future. In over 5 to 10 years no one will probably talk about BIM, as it will then become the way of functioning for the construction industry.

Not just BIM – smaller firms working for any sector are usually the last to adopt any technology that might need niche expertise and substantial investment. Besides a new venture, is always looked at with apprehension and uncertainty. But this is true even for new or challenging projects that you take up. So why be apprehensive about BIM? Choose the best software tools and partner with experts to gain optimum benefits.

However shedding all apprehensions – blindfolding yourself and following the herd, is not the right way to be BIM empowered. Smaller firms should first research well. Understand everything about this buzzword called BIM – Building information modeling. They might plan to outsource, because building an in house team and hiring a BIM expert team who is also very well effervescent with design and construct processes can be difficult.

The most important thing is – to look at BIM as an opportunity for better project handling and growth, not as something that you have to invest in because this is what everyone is doing.

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