BIM Services Help Small Organizations Adapt
Large, key players in the construction industry began using BIM technology early on. In this case, ‘early generally means within a few years of the first implementation of BIM under the Virtual Building concept by Graphisoft’s ArchiCAD, which debuted in 1987. Since that debut, Building Information Modeling (BIM) is a term that has become ubiquitous in the design and construction fields.
What is BIM?
According to Wikipedia, “The concept of BIM has existed since the 1970s… (although) the acronym “BIM” (was) not…popularly used until Autodesk ®released the white paper entitled “Building Information Modeling” (in 2003).”
Wikipedia further defines BIM as “…a process involving the generation and management of digital representations of physical and functional characteristics of a facility. The resulting building information models become shared knowledge resources to support decision-making about a facility from earliest conceptual stages, through design and construction through its operational life and eventual demolition.”
This 3D model-centric process presents the potential to the AEC industry to reduce costs, improve collaboration, and deliver projects faster and a host of other associated benefits. While this concept is more recent within the AEC community, it was already widely adopted and very well established in the manufacturing arena in the guise of digital prototyping.
Manufacturing companies due to expanding global competition were driven to adopt an adapt to survive mentality and deliver projects to far tighter timescales and at a reduced cost, but at the same time, these businesses still needed to remain profitable.
So as a result of market pressures, manufacturing sector processes literally evolved to take advantage of 3D model-centric technology and Digital Prototyping became an industry standard that continues to evolve to this day.
Small Business BIM Services
While larger organizations got on the BIM bandstand quickly in order to improve profitability and remain globally competitive, small businesses have traditionally been at a disadvantage when competing in the larger global market or against high-stakes player due to their more limited cash flow and less far-reaching future planning. This is where a well-organized BIM service company can provide small businesses with the same competitive advantages as larger companies, but without the need for purchasing the infrastructure (software, hardware, and personnel) to support the newer technology.
BIM Service Providers Offer Better Outcomes for Small Businesses
A qualified BIM Service Provider can offer small business many different design disciplines and software alternatives that can help nearly any small business improve their customer presentations, and aid collaboration between the contractor, specialists, and suppliers, using a single, shared 3D model. This is collaboration at its best – a working partnership with a BIM service provider that offers all the benefits of an in-house BIM team. This kind of collaborative working relationship ensures that everyone is focused on achieving best value, from project inception to eventual decommissioning.
In addition, an experienced BIM service provider can offer small AEC firms and/or manufacturing design companies:
- Enhanced performance – by providing the swift and accurate comparison of different design options, enabling development of more efficient, cost-effective and sustainable solutions.
- Better outcomes – Projects can be visualized at an early stage and easily modified in the design stage to achieve desired outcomes. In advance of construction or manufacturing a BIM service provider can ‘build’ the project in a virtual environment, rehearsing complex procedures, optimizing temporary designs and planning procurement of materials, equipment, and manpower.
- Faster project delivery – Often a BIM service provider can save a small business up to 50% in design time.
- Reduced waste –Cash-conscious small companies need to be certain that materials are not over-ordered. Precise program scheduling enables just-in-time delivery of materials and equipment, reducing the potential for damage. BIM services for automated fabrication of equipment and components enables more efficient materials handling and waste recovery.
Rather than focusing on “we should we adopt BIM” to what BIM Service Provider can we partner with, it won’t be too long before BIM will be the norm for your small business and partnership with a BIM Service Provider will be considered the natural evolution of your business strategy.