Lack of project insight occurs when project data is not integrated, as it takes a tremendous amount of manual effort to put it together for practical use. For example, downloading files, formatting, etc. are tedious steps and require labor, which leaves projects vulnerable to mistakes, and creates version control issues. It can take the greater part of a day to produce one single project status report.
“One of the most time-taking and error-prone activities … is literally the process of taking off measurements and quantities from a set of drawings. Generally, this process has involved physical blueprints or, today, digital versions of those blueprints.” – Walter Davis (Estimating Market Manager)
This digital transformation has begun; however, it is still in the early stages. Building Information Modeling (BIM) adoption is growing, and this is a very good sign because the Architecture, Engineering & Construction (AEC) industry is far behind the industrial industry. An intelligent model is a start. However, it’s also the schedule and the cost intelligence that are key to transforming the industry. This is where using a “Smart Connected” workflow will provide the ultimate True 5D BIM Experience.
This can be achieved by smart linking the schedule, cost and model items to provide better construction insight. This provides key benefits such as enhanced information exchange and insights into construction schedule conflicts and shows visual progress. It should also help optimize utilization of resources to provide faster and accurate estimates. It can increase the visibility of changes on projects and enable project planners to have cost and resource insights for better field planning.
Finally, it should reduce time for project team reporting so they can focus on high value tasks and enable web and mobile clients for easy access. True 5D BIM for construction should provide the ability to visualize the model elements virtually per the project schedule as well as the planned cost graphically, so cash flow status and analysis is understood by stakeholders.
What does True 5D BIM mean to cost managers? Project teams avoid having materials or equipment sitting unused on site for long periods and they are in a position to plan ahead and submit orders for long-lead items, so they can arrive on site at the right time. Perhaps most compelling are the improvements in preparation ease and accuracy of pay application processes for all project stakeholders.
What does True 5D BIM mean for general contractors? BIM for general contractors equipped with intelligent and information rich 4D and 5D models have direct as well as indirect benefits starting with accurate estimation. This helps win the trust of the owner and perhaps most importantly helps increase a contractor’s win rate. At the project level, contractors now have the ability to generate fast and accurate cost reporting that allows better financial decision making. It also strengthens the owner-contractor relationship through more accurate reporting and change management over the span of the project.
What does True 5D BIM mean for estimators? By being able to access this information in a 3D model, without manually measuring or counting everything in the project, an estimator’s productivity can be multiplied by orders of magnitude.
More owners are looking to achieve this level of delivery from their general contractors not only because of these benefits, but also because it’s simply smart business.
Contact Hexagon today to learn more about our BIM-iQ Assessment and ROI Calculation to measure where you are in your digital transformation journey. Look for our next BIM-iQ blog topic where we will talk about “How SMART BIM is becoming self-aware”.
Brian is an experienced corporate marketing, sales, consulting services and engineering professional with more than 39 years working with engineering systems supporting the AEC industry. He has worked on design teams for wastewater treatment, petrochemical, fossil fuel and nuclear power plant, product design and manufacturing facilities, utilities, biotech, pharmaceutical and government lab facilities and the transportation industry. He is degreed in computer aided drafting and design, graduating Suma Cum Laude from Johnson and Wales University and is also certified in mechanical engineering technology, graduating Suma Cum Laude from Sawyer School. He has served on a variety of software advisory boards such as AGC BIM Forum and ASHRAE TC1.5.