Building information modelling (BIM), is a revolutionary opportunity for designers, contractors and FM organisations working together from conception of delivery on design, build and operation projects. BIM is the digital avatar of the built environment. It holds and visualises the physical and functional characteristics of the built environment in a format that can be readily shared throughout the whole supply chain over its lifetime. The result is better built and maintained buildings.

BIM’s Role Within Asset Management

The built environment represents a crucial business asset. Being able to effectively manage and maintain assets is critical to the business model and revenue generation. An asset management system allows maintenance and operations to be carried out without the need for an additional stand-alone system, generating cost savings, utilisation improvements and improved asset availability.

FM organisations are looking to drive down costs, raise labour productivity and improve service levels, to enable them to retain and deliver existing contracts more profitability, as well as competing more effective for new FM deals with new and existing customers.

FM and outsource providers need to have a neutral-platform to combine BIM with their asset management system, ie to have the BIM data in a format that will integrate naturally with their existing system, and which requires no further training to interrogate and use.

Benefits of BIM

  • Minimise errors by reducing conflicts of design and duplication of effort.
  • Improved visibility of the final output and better communications, meaning stakeholders share the vision, removing misunderstandings.
  • The handed-over asset is built and not as designed – meaning it is a true reflection of the live asset.
  • It allows pricing, reducing both time and resources used to estimate and correct changing designs.
  • Mitigating risks including safety can be built in.
  • Allows temporary works to be overlaid against the permanent design, helping both with planning, refurbishing or phase works as well as improving stakeholder communications.
  • Cost savings from efficient procurement, construction and supply chain management.
  • Improved client satisfaction through project predictability and allowance for early modification based on initial visualisations.

What to Expect in the Future

The ongoing rapid advances in technology mean contractors and FM organisations alike,  have the opportunity to harness progress to look at their underlying business model. They can establish how it can deliver significant opportunities that make the business more efficient, provide a competitive advantage and how to create a sustainable supply chain throughout the life-cycle of the built asset.

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