As engineering and construction firms race to develop Building Information Modelling (BIM) compliance, required for the entire supply chain of construction companies involved in all centrally procured government construction projects from 2016, we take a look at what is going to change and what skillsets will be required in order to comply with the new standard.
BIM requires every component of a construction project, not just the building itself, to be rendered digitally and integrated into a single model to ensure all components work as a cohesive whole.
Naturally the move to a digital environment for every phase of a project will require an evolution in the skills required by your team. A grounding in CAD will obviously be helpful though familiarity will be required with packages such as Civil 3D, Revit, and InfraWorks.
Levels of BIM
Level 0 – Level 1 BIM
The level that most companies are currently working at. Usually consists of 3D CAD models for concept work with 2D drafting used for statutory compliance and production.
Level 2 BIM
This is the level set by the UK government as a target for all public-sector work in 2016. This requires each party in the development process to create their own 3D CAD models. All must be shareable with each other in a common file format such as IFC (Industry Foundation Class) or COBie (Construction Operations Building Information Exchange) though the end result does not necessarily need to be integrated into a shared model.
Level 3 BIM
Level 3 BIM is the full realisation of the BIM standard. At this level all parties involved in the construction project will ideally be working from the same 3D model with all component parts fully integrated. The UK government has set a target for this level to be used for all public-sector works in 2019.
Clearly an emphasis on Computer Aided Design skills is going to be essential in the future as it becomes necessary for firms to update their software and manage the skills of their staff to meet the requirements of the new standard.