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Do I need a CAD/BIM Consultant?

November 30th, 2015

Why do I need to engage the services of a CAD or BIM consultant?

Choosing a CAD and BIM consultancy can be a daunting task.

By now most are aware that BIM usage in all UK government construction projects by 2016 is mandatory and this focus on BIM has interestingly grown and becoming an integral part of non-governmental projects. Architects are identifying and acknowledging the benefits of the BIM process to enhance and improve delivery and the design process. This has led to a demand for support services.

For some time now architects, structural and M&E engineers are asked at the feasibility stage if they can do ‘BIM’ and Cadventure are assisting those who know that to decline would be to lose potential business. We provide BIM strategy statements for their proposals and guide through the initial BIM requirements.

How the pundits have evolved, BIM used to stand for ‘Building Information modelling’ then it was referred to as ‘Building Information management’. Low and behold we are now being asked to drop the ‘B’ from the BIM and we should refer to it as Information modelling (IM) or even Information management (IM).

Yes, ‘BIM is a process’ and no matter what we decide to call the process it is now a case of get involved or get left behind. No pressure then?

A sample of key elements which could influence and define your competitive advantage?

  • Classroom training supported by project workshops and working with the project teams or the life of project life.
  • Ensure your standards are in place and adhered to.
  • Developing and improving BIM processes.
  • Understanding the process and delivering exactly to the employers requirements.
  • Improve your workflow and hence create impressive deliverables.

Considerations on appointing a consultant

  • If possible appoint by recommendation and ask to talk to their existing clients.
  • Invite your consultant to your project design team meetings to participate in the CAD/BIM related agenda items and put these items first on the agenda so your consultant may depart for the remainder of the meeting.
  • Think about why cheaper training is cheaper and assess if it’s a false economy.
  • Budget for your consultant as an essential part of your project team.

Is it all plane sailing?

  • ‘Lonely BIM’ without help is going to be harder
  • It’s easy to break the BIM methodology.
  • It’s easy to ‘go off piste’ if users are not properly trained.
  • Shortcuts will compromise the required BIM output.
  • Adherence to standards is paramount and do not deviate.
  • Structured data is important.

Conclusion

How can a potential customer choose which consultant to use?

Go with a trusted recommendation and be aware that the cheaper the price the more likely you are not getting someone who has worked at a high level with BIM.

Despite spending on training, hardware and software, there are BIM implementation failures. It is important to get the best advice and help to make the transition work to get the downstream benefits.