The process of implementing BIM is about change management, first and foremost. To do this successfully, the process needs to be carried out methodically. The best way is to make a ‘BIM implementation plan’, and the steps for this are outlined through the course of this series. This final article in the series examines how commitment to the BIM implementation strategy is vital at all levels within your business, and sees the process reach fruition by carrying out and evaluating the first test project.
Commitment to BIM
For all the good intentions and assurances of those involved, the ‘proof of the pudding’ will always be that stage where commitment is actually tested. As this series of articles has shown, the impact and coverage of BIM implementation is far wider-reaching than might at first be assumed. It affects every level of an organisation, from budget and expenditure to team structure; from standards compliance to contract structures. Support is crucial at all levels and in all departments; not just those who are actively working ‘at the coalface’. Not only do all those involved with a BIM project need to be committed and diligent in their adherence to the principles of collaborative working, but colleagues and managers need to give their support in terms of resources, and, perhaps equally importantly, dedication to and promotion of the cause. An office that is divided in opinion is not conducive to success.
As much as office-wide support is necessary, however, it is within the project team itself where member-to-member support becomes vital. In this context, support means team members working with consistency, accuracy and to the same methods and standards. There is no room for individuality or difference of opinion when it comes to shared working practices: BIM standards and protocols exist so that all collaborators can work together by following the same set of rules. If one person inherits another’s work, they know how it has been carried out, where to find anything and how to continue it. No time is wasted in trying to decipher another’s methods, or by re-working; and discrepancies are minimized as all contributors have the same understanding.
The first BIM project
And so to the matter of the first BIM project: the time to put into practice all of the principles and protocols that have been established throughout the preparation stages. The first project will need to be selected, and this will naturally need careful consideration. Criteria to consider include:
- Size of project (contract value, physical size)
- Duration of contract
- Quantity of staff required
- Complexity of brief
- BIM capabilities of the other stakeholders
- Willingness of the client to participate in a BIM-compliant project