BIM Challenge #1: Lack of Understanding

After speaking to many colleagues, one of the ongoing challenges of integrating BIM into projects is lack of education and understanding from the Project Managers and teams. It’s not that they’re necessarily against using BIM, it’s just they don’t fully realize the increased benefits (and cost savings) that it can provide during the design phase of the project.

To summarize this challenge and solution, a quote from Albert Einstein comes to mind:

Peace cannot be kept by force; it can only be achieved by understanding.”

So how do we get the team to understand and proactively create a solution?

First, we must get the Project Manager (PM) to agree to use BIM on the project.  Once you have the project ready to use your BIM talents you can start by showing the team better ways to communicate, and work with Consultants.  Here’s my signature process for overseeing the BIM implementation from project inception to completion:

  1.  Coordinate a meeting with the PM to understand the needs of the project
    1. What are the deliverables?
    2. What are the contract requirements?
    3. Who’s on the Team?
    4. What are the deadlines?
    5. Fill out BEP and send to consultants for comments and markup.
    6. Coordinate a meeting to go over BEP with all consultants.
    7. Once BEP is complete work up a simple massing exercise of the project workflow in Revit.
    8. Coordinate a meeting with in-house staff on the project. In this meeting, review the requirements for the project, and how the team will work with consultants.
    9. Organize regular check-ins with the project group to go over any Revit issues – I call these Revit Coordination meetings.
      1. Use this meeting to explain efficient ways of modeling the project.
      2. Answer any questions users may have.
      3. Go over any major changes with the model (Design Options, Scheduling, Families needed/used.)
      4. Check on team’s progress using the projects deliverables.

 

The main key to resolving this challenge is to make sure the project is successful, which can be done through monitoring the processes and communicating with the project team to ensure the project is produced effectively and efficiently. Once your first project is a success you will see more and more Project Managers coming to you for Project Startups.

Always remember that you are not only a BIM Specialist, you are also a BIM Teacher. Teaching the end users and PM the benefits and value of BIM is always step one in creating buy-in and success.

 

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