Archinect
TrueCADD

TrueCADD

Ahmedabad, IN

anchor

BIM for Contractors: The Most Important Benefits

G Trivedi
Sep 13, '18 7:10 AM EST

BIM uses Virtual Design and Construction capabilities in 3D for building or infrastructure design planning, collaboration of disciplines stakeholders and construction management. BIM is embedded deep into the construction industry for around for a while and now has started to gain traction.

The technology advancements of mobile devices and cloud-based software are facilitating the adoption of technology by contractors. BIM adoption is increasing amongst the contractors as they are looking control over the construction project expenditure, quicken the pace, and find efficient means for IPD.

BIM in itself has a very deep meaning relatable to the construction industry project approaches at every stage. Let us explore all these projects and how BIM is helpful to contractors at each of these stages.

B – Building of designs

Architects and engineers utilize BIM to transform conceptual designs in to geometric 3D models for buildings and infrastructure. While general contractors, based on these models develop construction plans, logistic and downstream processes. To these professionals, BIM is more than just a mere model; it forms the digital lifecycle from design to demolition. BIM LOD 500 models essentially help contractors in communicating their intent and project purpose with by facilitating a more collaborative approach.

I – Information of the entire project

The basis of a successful construction project is the capability of the architects and engineers to seamlessly embed the design intelligence into the model and be able to manage the data efficiently. The Common Data Environment of BIM facilitates a common platform for design change tracks and effectively keeps all the stakeholders on same page.

Furthermore when designs are finalized, data and planning for construction can be well maintained and shared with every stakeholder. Any queries change orders etc. can easily be handled by digitized RFIs within the review process and quick-informed decisions can be made.

M – Maintain with the model

The 3D model is the key to all phases of the build process including preconstruction phase, during the construction, and post construction phase. CDE in BIM is handed over to the project owners once the construction is finished.

This CDE or as-built BIM model which incorporates the changes made during the construction are included in the model and it serves as one source of truth to building owners and facility managers. The data warehoused within becomes the resource for facility managers to refer to efficient maintenance, during renovations or retrofitting. Smallest of the information of part size, valve, pump etc. can be traced; its installation, last maintenance activity details etc. can all be retrieved easily.

BIM during Construction Process

Since BIM has critically improved the approach of building construction and infrastructure development projects, subcontractors involved in construction should also be a part of it. We thus shed some light on BIM benefits for construction.

Preconstruction Phase

BIM’s key factor is collaboration. Thus, the best use of BIM pre construction is for sub-contractors since they lay the foundation to collaborate design and installation procedures of prefabricated building elements and products. Also, they are the subject matter experts so with BIM they can collaborate well with the design stakeholders, steel fabricators and building manufacturers. With BIM, they can ensure the least reworks and an efficient check on costs.

Ongoing Construction Phase

During the ongoing construction phase, BIM-ready 3D models act as the single source of information for the project teams and on site engineers as well as contractors. The foremen will have the access to the model for task assignment and execution. Also the advanced wearable technology equipped with AR/VR will help the foremen to connect the engineer back in the office. When there are any design changes in the model, the entire team is notified of the implications upon costs and schedules. This way everyone on the project can stay updated.

Post-construction Phase

Post the construction, the most tasks are operating the facility smoothly and deliver the best and hassle free maintenance. This can be achieved by two things: in place BIM-ready model and having knowledge of which component is located where. When these two are in place going from BIM [Building Information Modeling] to FIM [Facility Information Modeling] isn’t afar.  With BIM, facility managers are being able to get these two tasks in place and owners can take appropriate decisions across the life span of the building.

Conclusion

Thus, it can be said that BIM has a significant impact upon contractors, be it general or sub-contractors. It serves as a single file that beholds all the information for entire building construction or infrastructure development project. It enhances the partnership of the contractors with sub-contractors, building owners, engineers and architects. Combining better project delivery, BIM helps contractors achieve better business and engineering results.