BIM Platforms: 10 Important Advantages to Using a BIM Platform! Advantages to use a BIM platform bim platform
Here I share 10 reasons you must use a BIM platform!

If you’re already in the design and construction industry, you probably know the importance of using a BIM platform. But if you’re still on the fence about using one, then here are ten advantages that might change your mind! 😃

Introduction

Building Information Modeling (BIM) Software

There are many different types of BIM software that you can choose from – so many that it is essential to establish a clear BIM software strategy regardless of the BIM software you pick.

This BIM strategy must help you understand your business needs, define clear BIM requirements for each project, and manage how each BIM software can fit into your workflow.

You could manage these critical decisions with Excel and Word documents, PDFs and Emails HOWEVER it can become a big burden on your team’s resources – so, this is where a BIM platform comes in very handy!

A BIM platform can help organize your templates, BIM requirements, BIM contracts, BIM tracking/verification processes, and much more!

Using a BIM platform you will reduce your BIM administration, increase productivity, keep your projects on track and gain the maximum benefits from using BIM.

Reasons to use a BIM platform

Here’s a brief rundown of the reasons why you might want to utilize a BIM platform to assist on your project:

  1. To store all of your BIM Execution Plan (BEP) templates and manage the BEP in a dedicated online tool!
  2. To reduce the risk of scope gaps by agreeing on the critical BIM scope!
  3. To manage the permitted BIM software versions to avoid file transfer difficulties!
  4. To minimize the risk of scope overlap, make sure everyone on the team knows who is responsible for what BIM.
  5. To help promote collaborative BIM coordination and minimize misunderstandings!
  6. To improve pro-active BIM sequencing to avoid nasty BIM clashes!
  7. To reduce costs by eliminating over-production of BIM deliverables!
  8. To be more efficient when using BIM and avoid situations where you don’t get as much out of BIM as you would like!
  9. To promote more sustainable construction through BIM – BIM may help you save energy and water, increase daylighting, and utilize recycled materials!
  10. To enhance BIM quality control and minimize construction errors for a better project result!

Some could appear similar at first glance, so let’s look at each in greater detail…

1. Manage templates for BIM Execution Plans (BEPs), ISO 19650 documents, and contracts in a collaborative online BEP tool!

I believe that to avoid miscommunication on a BIM project, it’s essential to establish a clear BIM Execution Plan at the outset!

Using a BIM planning tool like Plannerly allows your team to keep track of BEP templates, development, and approval of BEPs, all in one place.

For the BIM Execution Plan to be successful, it must serve as both a contract and a living document throughout design and construction.

The BEP should also be a collaborative effort (between the owner, designer, and builder) to identify the level of BIM expected for each deliverable.

A BIM platform is valuable to help manage these requirements alongside all of your BEP templates, ISO 19650 templates, and critical contract templates.

Here are five more reasons why you might consider utilizing a collaborative BIM Execution Plan on your next project:

Why you need a BIM Execution Plan (BEP)
Do you use a BIM Execution Plan on your projects? What advantages have you found?

2. Reduce the Risk of Misunderstanding by Having a Clear BIM Scope

I’m a firm believer in using BIM, but it’s also easy to get carried away with BIM 😃

Occasionally, an owner may unintentionally request too much BIM, and the project team may over-produce.

On the other hand, if an owner requests too little BIM, the project may not reap all of BIM’s benefits.

To help manage the optimal BIM scope, a BIM platform can make this visual and straightforward for all parties.

BIM managers can achieve a clear BIM scope definition in a grid/matrix like this with images and detailed information requirements:

BIM Platforms: 10 Important Advantages to Using a BIM Platform! image bim platform
BIM Scope Grid in BIM platform

Teams that use a BIM platform can more easily identify potential risks and issues early on in the project.

The BIM platform allows for proactive problem solving and risk management, saving time and money!

When everyone is on the same page about exactly what BIM needs to be created, it’s easier to stay within scope and budget!

3. Manage authorized BIM software versions to avoid BIM transfer problems!

There are so many BIM and CAD software programs out there, and it can be hard to keep track of what software each BIM team is using and which version of the software too!

BIM management platforms and tools
Which are BIM management tools and which are business management tools?

Even with the best BIM software, knowing what version to use is essential.

BIM teams need to make sure they can share compatible BIM files that all team members can open in their BIM software without problems or errors.

BIM software tools can fit into many different software categories – ranging from architectural design to construction collaboration software.

If this aspect of software versions and compatibility is not controlled early (specifying in the BIM platform), it can create many problems.

A BIM platform can help manage which software is being used, and by whom, so everyone in the design team is always up-to-date.

BIM software versions BEP template
The above example is from the BEP templates that come with Plannerly.

Managing software versions early on can help avoid compatibility issues down the line!

4. Ensure that teams know who should do what BIM to reduce the chances of scope overlap!

Building Information Models are created by multiple teams collaborating to make the final project design.

Unfortunately, without knowing who is in charge of each component of the BIM scope, teams frequently duplicate one another’s efforts or worse, make changes that may have an unintended consequence on another aspect of the project.

BIM Modeling Responsibilities

To avoid this, it’s important to assign roles and responsibilities early on in the project.

For example:

  • The architect is responsible for developing the massing models and main interior wall layout
  • The structural engineering team is responsible for developing the core structural model and steel column layout
  • The civil engineers align the roads and bridges
  • The subcontractors could be responsible for managing the building systems
  • The BIM Manager is responsible for coordinating all the different BIM models (from the structural engineers to the architecture engineering and construction teams) and ensuring that they’re all compatible!

Each team should know precisely what BIM they need to do and when to do it.

A BIM platform can help manage these roles and responsibilities by keeping everyone on the same page and ensuring everyone knows what they need to do.

This will help avoid scope creep and duplication of work on your project.

5. Promote Collaborative BIM Coordination and reduce miss-communication!

I say that it’s absolutely critical that everyone is on the same page, literally!

Making sure your BIM team is on the same BIM page

All members of a design and construction project team must have access to the same Building Information Modeling data to avoid potential errors, omissions, and delays.

BIM platforms are used to document BIM standards to make everyone aware of BIM processes to follow.

BIM platforms enable all team members to be in sync. They also let teams coordinate on that information in real-time, which is critical for projects with many teams.

The BIM platform has documented BIM planning, scoping, and verifying steps that keep the BIM implementation process on track.

This improved BIM management coordination can lead to a more efficient workflow and, ultimately a better product for the customer!

BIM tools like Plannerly help promote collaboration by providing a single place where all project members can access the latest versions of the BIM models and understand what is approved for its model/BIM use!

Overall, using a BIM platform will help you communicate and coordinate with all team members – which may save the project time and money by reducing delays!

6. Improve Pro-active BIM Sequencing to Avoid BIM Clashes!

Avoiding Clashes by routing pipe around cable tray
Plan for these situations so that teams know who has priority when creating the BIM

Although implementing BIM technology has a lot of benefits, it can still be difficult for remote teams to sequence their work proactively.

BIM adoption can result in the creation of many BIM models, and when they are combined, this can result in thousands of clashes (where two elements are trying to occupy the same space) 😞

The good news is that most of these clashes and errors can be avoided.

Using a BIM platform helps the major design teams sequence their activities and stay organized throughout the design process. BIM platforms also aid in coordination across all of the other departments.

Proactive BIM model sequencing can help promote a clash avoidance workflow to help eliminate those annoying clashes and, therefore, eliminate the need for many revisions!

5 Steps To Better BIM Management - Plannerly

Using a BIM platform (like Plannerly), teams can link their activities with other teams’ activities – this can also reduce RFI’s (Requests For Information) that may arise from poorly sequenced BIM modeling.

7. Eliminate Over-Production of BIM Model Deliverables to Reduced Costs

Too much BIM

A BIM platform can help reduce costs by streamlining the design and construction process.

This can lead to fewer change orders, less rework, and less waste.

Using a BIM solution for more early planning, you can avoid costly mistakes and rework later in the construction process.

8. Follow a defined BIM contracting workflow for greater efficiency and Avoid Situations Where You Get Too Little BIM Produced

If any BIM is missing, some tasks will not be able to be completed 😖

Missing BIM will cause stops and starts and unproductive time for design teams and construction projects.

A BIM platform can save you time by helping detail the BIM contract requirements and automating tedious tasks.

Your BIM platform will store BIM Execution Plan templates, your contract language, and any other critical documents that your project needs.

Having all of your templates in one place means that you can quickly create new project resources/documents that will allow your teams to get a headstart.

Following a defined BIM contracting workflow will be much easier with a dedicated tool/workflow and can help you avoid situations where you get too little BIM produced.

9. Improved Sustainability using BIM for Green Building certification – BIM can help you save energy and water, optimize daylighting, and use recycled materials!

The construction industry has a significant impact on the environment – both in terms of the resources it consumes and the waste it produces. As such, there is a growing emphasis on sustainable construction practices that minimize the negative environmental impact of buildings.

BIM (Building Information Modeling) is a powerful tool that can help architects and engineers design green buildings and help construction managers reduce the environmental impact of construction projects.

BIM sustainability and green building

A BIM platform can help plan for all of these BIM uses that focus on sustainability.

Some of the ways BIM can help in sustainability are:

  • BIM can be used to assess the impact of different materials on the environment and select those with the lowest carbon footprint.
  • BIM allows construction managers to identify potential areas where materials can be recycled or reused.
  • BIM helps construction managers to choose construction methods and materials that are more environmentally friendly.
  • BIM can help construction managers to schedule construction activities in a way that minimizes traffic congestion and pollution.
  • BIM can help construction managers reduce waste by identifying potential problems before construction begins.
  • BIM can be used to monitor energy consumption and identify opportunities for improvement.
  • BIM models can simulate different construction scenarios and optimize the use of resources.

By using a BIM platform, all of these BIM uses can be planned for and contracted so that BIM will help with the sustainability goals of the project and play an essential role in helping the construction industry become more sustainable.

As more organizations adopt BIM, sustainable construction practices will likely become more commonplace, helping to reduce the negative environmental impact of buildings.

10. Improved BIM Quality Control helps avoid construction mistakes for a better project outcome

Quality control is a crucial part of any construction project. It helps to ensure that the finished product meets the client’s expectations and is safe for occupiers.

Quality control can be a challenge, particularly on large and complex projects. This is where Building Information Modelling (BIM) can also help.

This model can identify potential problems and find solutions before construction even begins.

In addition, BIM can help streamline construction processes, which also helps to improve quality.

BIM can also be used during construction to verify that everything is being built according to plan.

And finally, BIM can be used for post-construction Quality Assurance (QA) inspections.

A BIM platform provides an opportunity to capture these quality goals and make them part of the design and construction teams’ goals for improved quality control.

There is less chance for error when everyone is working from the same digital model and on the same platform.

This improved BIM communication can help avoid errors, save time, and improve the overall quality of the project.

Learn about these three simple ideas to help BIM quality control:

BIM Quality Checklists
Simple BIM quality control ideas

Conclusion

There are many advantages to using a BIM platform to deliver your projects – from agreeing on what BIM should be done to a massive improvement in project management.

And from avoiding situations where you get too little BIM produced to eliminating over-production of BIM deliverables.

You can make sure that teams know who is responsible for what BIM and when!

Design and construction teams can work together to reduce costs and improve the quality of their work. They can also do this in a way that is more sustainable.

Through collaborative BIM tools, everyone involved in a project can have real-time access to the latest data and drawings. This promotes better collaboration and coordination between all team members.

Additionally, BIM tools can help improve communication between architects, engineers, and contractors.

By providing a common platform for sharing BIM data and ideas, we can help reduce miscommunication among project team members.

So whether you’re working on a large construction project or the most modest design scheme, you’ll find using a BIM management platform extremely valuable!

Do you use a BIM platform? What are some of the advantages you’ve experienced when utilizing a BIM platform?

BONUS TIPS: If you are thinking about using a BIM Execution Plan (BEP), here are some great tips to help you create a successful BEP!:

Please share my article and let your network know how we can improve BIM management by using a BIM platform like Plannerly! 😃

FAQs:

What is a BIM platform?

A BIM platform is software used by architects, engineers, and construction professionals to plan and manage the design of buildings. A BIM platform helps these professionals scope, contract, and verify BIM deliverables. The BIM platform also manages the BIM roles and responsibilities. A BIM platform (like Plannerly – The BIM Management Platform) can also be used by facility managers to plan requirements for the Asset Information Model (AIM), a Digital Twin, or the FM model scope.

What is Clash Avoidance (vs Clash Detection)?

Clash detection is the more commonly known BIM (Building Information Modeling) process of identifying clashes between different BIM elements using BIM coordination software like Navisworks or Solibri. However, Clash avoidance is the process of proactively planning to prevent clashes between different BIM elements.
Another difference is that clash avoidance is typically done at the design stage, while clash detection is typically done at the construction stage.
Clash avoidance is started by using a BIM priority structure for the elements so that all teams know what sequence to model the systems and elements in.
Clash avoidance can be promoted through the use of Lean BIM techniques like pull planning. Learn more in this Lean BIM 101 video.
Clash avoidance and clash detection are both essential parts of the BIM process and provide opportunities for better coordination between different disciplines and better quality control.

What is a BIM deliverable?

A BIM (Building Information Modeling) deliverable is usually a digital file that contains information about a construction project. This information can include the dimensions of the build, the materials used, and the location of the construction site. BIM deliverables are used by architects, engineers, and construction managers to plan and execute construction projects. They can also be used by facilities managers to maintain and operate buildings after they have been built. BIM deliverables are typically created using BIM software like Revit or ArchiCAD, which allows users to create digital models of buildings. These models can then be shared with other members of the construction team. BIM deliverables can help to improve communication between members of the construction team, and they can also help to reduce errors and delays.

What are BIM applications?

BIM applications are software programs that allow users to create, view, and manage BIM models. There are many different BIM applications available on the market, each with its own unique set of features and capabilities. Some of the most popular BIM applications include Autodesk Revit, Bentley Systems MicroStation, and Graphisoft ArchiCAD. BIM applications can be used for a variety of purposes, such as creating 3D visualizations of buildings, analyzing structural loads, and generating construction documents. In recent years, the use of BIM applications has become increasingly widespread in the architecture, engineering, and construction industries.

I blog for the Five BIM Bloggers series.

Every week we share different perspectives on important BIM topics!

To hear our views first, Join Free or follow Plannerly!

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