Feeling like working bacwards and stucked? (previously working in BIM & Revit now back to CAD) Advise? :


Hi everyone! So It's been a month now in my new work, and I feel so static and and I feel like I'm working backwards. During the interview, I was told that I will be using revit since they want to transition to it and form a BIM team of atleast 5, since their other office in other countries are already in BIM or revit.

Now, it's been more than a month, and I'm here changing doors or dimensions whenever there is something that changed in the floor plan. Crwating these f*cking flipping doors (Autocad dynamic blocks), when I know myself that these are just a click in revit. I'm okay with drawing 2D and detailing, it's just that I feel like working backwards with my new job. I'm thinking of talking to my teamleader with this but I am quite skeptical and scared. I choose this office because of flexibility and I see myself a room to grow, but with what I am experiencing at the moment, I don't see myself like that anymore, especially that I wanna put my career track towards BIM and Design.

Just last week, there was small presentation/meeting from our software supplier about BIM..which I thought our boss might consider it. Well he does, but I think he has no idea where to start or whatever? The presentor simply showed the importance of BIM and marketed their crtification and trainings which is fckng expensive, and I felt like I know more than the presentor but was shy to tell my seniors. At the moment, I am the only one who is profecient with bim & revit, there is another one person, but he said he is not so good at it.

I don't know what to do. I'm thankful for this relaxed job, but at the same time, I feel static and I don't wanna be like this for a long time. Any advice for a young architect? :(

Dec 5, 17 10:24 am
Non Sequitur

It's not backwards, it's just work.  You're a draftsman, learn what you can and take the opportunities with BIM as projects develop.  It's expensive to make the conversion from straight CAD to BIM and I guarantee you're not as proficient as you think you are. No-one is.

Dec 5, 17 10:41 am

I think you misunderstood it a bit. I know that is is work. Also, I am not in a draftsman position. I am here as a junior architect and as agreed during our interview, I'm supposed to be part of the BIM team they want to form since they want to transition into it. Also, like what I said, I worked as a BIM coordinator before, and worked in the design field and competitions as well. I choose to this job over other offers since I thought it would be a great opportunity to explore a growing firm. Also, I am NOT SAYING I am more proficient as others. I know that I have alot to learn especially from them, but I also think they also have alot to learn, not just from me, but from the latest technologies that would make work more efficient and projects more profitable.

Non Sequitur

I don't think there has ever been a first BIM project which was "profitable". Speaking from considerable experience here.


Well, I don't think you've ever worked with good BIM professionals or maybe know how it truly works. From clash detection to a more accurate computation and schedules all in pre-construction stages that truly saved time and money. Isn't that sounding profitable enough?

Non Sequitur

I have actually. That's not were the time suck is.


Well, that's not where the time suck? Sorry? I didn't quite get you with that. I do understand you had might had bad experience with BIM..and I do respect people who doesn't see the benefits of it. But it is undeniable, that some software are better than the other and can make you work efficiently depending on the task or work that needs to be done. Apparently, some BIM softwares are proven more efficient than Autocad.

All the software is useful. Get a subscription and use BIM when you need it, pause it when you don't need it?

Dec 5, 17 10:52 am

Sorry, I think you don't get the point? or maybe understand BIM? BIM is not about the software, it can also involve several 2D/3D & manipulation softwares. Also we have BIM softwares installed in our PC's which is barely used.

I have been where you are. Without principal buy in you wont get to that BIM place you want to be.


If you're still in your trial period you could always walk away and look for a job where they work the way you want. It could take years before they make the switch, when all this time your BIM skills are not improving, while the software improves with every update, making it harder for you to compete with other BIM proficient people that worked with it every single day. Quitting a job because they didn't BIM as they promised was the best thing I did professionally, but that was just me.

Dec 5, 17 11:00 am

Good point. I was thinking of this too. But I do love the working environment because of the flexibility. But It's nice to know that someone was kinda of the same situation with me. I will still test the waters and maybe talk to my senior about this. I just need to have the courage. LOL

1. Get BIM and submit it as a reimbursable to the firm.

2. Quit and find a firm that does BIM.

3. Start a firm. Or better yet, a sole proprietorship.

Dec 5, 17 11:07 am
Consider what your end goals are. If you are looking to follow a BIM manager career track, now may be the time to move while you still can. Don't expect this firm to switch over anytime soon, it can take years to re-lay all of the standards and methods the firm has amassed in their previous software. There's also a huge skepticism- rightfully so - from older architects about switching to the software of the moment only to have to switch again in a few years. Not to mention them having to waste their own precious unbillable hours figuring out how to navigate these softwares and delegate time accordingly.

However if you have a long list of pros - like good work life balance, quality projects, congenial environment, opportunities for growth etc it's probably worth it to stay and teach yourself as many shortcuts as possible in cad.
Dec 5, 17 11:28 am

Thanks! Well, I'm not looking at beeing a BIM manager, but who knows? I was an assistant BIM coordinator before and then moved to design. Now I felt like kinda combining both that's why I choose this job.


​The thing is, they already have established their BIM standards in their other offices in other countries. They have implemented BIM in some of their projects (yet in their other offices), but not here in this current branch. Where they still use CAD and all the manual stuff in excel. I am not expecting them to fully switch anytime soon, as I know how to respect my seniors who doesn't​ have the time to learn a new software because they also need to spend time with their family. I also respect older arechitects on their knowledge on alot of things. But ofcourse, things are changing, and technology is there to help us. Wether HOW they will adopt to it or not is not a question, but it's more of are they willing? One of my seniors already knows about the potential of BIM or even Revit software wise. I'm planning to talk to her and make an initiative and ask for a small pilot project to try out with revit, but I am not sure if this is a right move. Some of my friend says yes, but some said it can also put me on having a bad impression. :/


they are not serious about transitioning to revit - trust me - I'ive worked at many firms that said they would but never did - find a job with a firm that is using Revit

Dec 5, 17 11:48 am

Yes, many firms are still in this position. BIM is a big move.


Thanks for the reply. I also had a few friends who are in the same position since there is no BIM standards here in Germany and it is just starting to pop in, even the use if Archicad. Likewise, I also have a few pros on this job. But yeah, if after 3 months, I would still feel the same, I guess I would most likely to look for something new.


@David Even though my office has alread y used BIM in their other offices, it's a bit different in the office where I'm at. They didn't had  any projects done with revit since no one knows how to use it,(this is the boss told me during the interview). 

5 computers have revit and navisworks on it, but no one uses it. They would only use it to view files or if needed to view or convert something. Isn't that a waste of money?

Our projects gets money from the time we spend on making drawing(ofcourse, most of the offices are). If a software hanging around there and is available and would make work faster, why wouldn't they use it? I'm not expecting them or would force them to learn it. But atleast, let the people who knows it to utilize it. 

wow, big waste of software, they should rent out the stations

Non Sequitur

I don't think you understand the work it takes to start fresh in BIM. My office did it 4 years ago (with me at the front of the charge) and we're still making changes. It is rather unlikely that an established practice would give the reins to a new junior staff immediately... and whatever you do, keep in mind that BIM is hardly ever quicker than CAD... double that without access to a good starting template.

there is waste in every system


Like I mentioned, our other offices was already implementing if for years. We have the templates, common standards, families, Manuals in our common server. Although some might not totally apply because Germany does not have an established BIM standards compared to the UK. But still, we can start from there and maybe use some of their stuff lying in our common server. What do you think? Also, I am not looking yet at making the whole process faster with BIM, but atleast making the a part of the process faster, like producing drawings and early stages as a start of the transition.

Non Sequitur

second part of my response was lost.... anyways, my advice is to ask if you can take whatever downtime you have available and start building a compatible template just in case a project presents itself. That way you can ease the transition.


Thanks @Non

What do you think of asking a senior team leader about it? Like make a request for a small project? This person knows a little about BIM and revit. Do you think this is an okay move? Like what I mentioned, we have the templates and other standards in our common server that is used by the UK and Spain office. 

Non Sequitur

^Cruiser, our office had a junior tech come in a few years back claiming to know BIM in and out. Someone, against my recommendation, gave this individual the task to manage a large BIM project without supervision. I was a disaster. I had to pull away from my other projects for nearly a month to fix the headaches. Just keep in mind that stories like these are plentiful and it is likely that your boss has heard their fair share from other colleagues... hence my advice of easing in first.


There barely a bim standard in U.S., (im making this up but) it safe to say less than 5% of projects done are using bim, and maybe less than half are revit at this point.


Undertaking a BIM switch can be a big, painful ordeal.  IF they do get around to making the transition, you'll be highly valued.  But it's really expensive so they may need a reason to sink all of that money in first.  If you are set on using BIM, I'd ask around the office (casually of course) to see if there has been any talk about transitioning.  Get a feel for how serious they are.  If you don't like what you hear, move on.

If they already have the software, maybe it's just a matter of suggesting, 'what if we did this small project in BIM?' and slowly educating people and getting them on-board.  That's kind of how it went in my office after we got the infrastructure.

Dec 5, 17 12:08 pm

Thanks! This is a really helpful insight. Our other offices in other countries (ie. UK, Spain), has been implementing BIM for years. But in the office where I'm currently at, they haven't handled any project with BIM since no one knows how it works. Even though they have somehow a slight idea about it because of the other offices. I know that they know the potential, and the boss is willing to transition to it. But maybe he doesn't know how? He invited our software supplier to talk about it, but he was just marketing their BIM certification and training, kinda luring my boss to get the employess trained with them and pay heft amount of money for a piece of paper with their signature. :/

Move some bodies there who know BIM?


Well, aside from the salary, they also prefer to live in London. I would move there if the would ask me. :)


cruiservodka, I get your pain. I would be completely frustrated too. Yeah it may just be that he doesn't know how to go about changing paths. I've noticed in my firm that the transition doesn't just affect workflow, but also the upper level's expectations of what can happen and the amount of time it takes and how many people - which also affects fee. So it may partially be an education issue (like making sure staff know how to use the program) but also an upper-level issue.


I will add as something to consider, because my office is going through the transition for the past 2 years, that it does take more time as a firm just starting out because you have no library of components, no titleblocks, no families... nothing. We've been creating things as we go or downloading what we can, so of course, it takes longer than it would if we already had all of these things. We've had to balance how much we are willing to create vs. just draft in 2D due to time restrictions on projects.


@thatsthat Good point! This is also my reason and what's pulling me from talking to one of my senior team leaders. It's because if I initiate something, then I would have to prove things and really meet their expectations, whatever that is. I'm kinda scared with that, because it might put me into a not so good situation especially I'm just new in the office. It's either I succeed and be a hero or totally fail and make a bad impression and worst be kicked out(which I think will less likely to happen, as I have refreshed my CAD skills enough I think? lol)

The question here now is, should I really make an initiative or what? We have quite alot of small retail projects that are repeating, so I was thinking of asking them to have this as a pilot/test project. We have all the templates, titleblocks and a few families from the our UK office, so the struggle might be in creating more families suitable to our own standards, and ofcourse, modeling it (which I think I am good enough?hopefully?).

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