BIM FAQs

What is BIM?

BIM is BUILDING INFORMATION MODELLING
The simple and de-constructed version: BIM = structuring information for use in design, construction and management of facilities and assets.
The Construction Industry Council’s (CIC) definition: Building Information Modelling is digital representation of physical and functional characteristics of a facility creating a shared knowledge resource for information about it forming a reliable basis for decisions during its life cycle, from earliest conception to demolition.

What is an SME?

An SME is a SMALL to MEDIUM SIZED BUSINESS
BIM4SME uses the EU definition:
Micro 1 – 10 employees with a turnover or balance sheet of less than £2m.
Small 11 – 49 employees with a turnover or balance sheet between £2m and £15m.
Medium 50 – 250 employees with a turnover or balance sheet between £15m & £50m.
Based on the 2011 figures almost 80% of the 360,000 SMEs fell into the Micro definition above.

How do you use BIM?

BIM it is way of working, it is therefore a process. It is assembling information in a structured manner and then managing the information in a team environment. The process is described in detail in the PAS1192-2:2013 which covers the Level 2 BIM process during construction and PAS1192-3:2014 which follows on to describe the process during the operation of the building. These documents are free to download.

What can BIM working do?

BIM enabled working allows this information to be shared by different project participants and also between different stages of design, construction and operation.
How much more money could be made from implementing it?
If successfully implemented, will help businesses strip the waste from their processes which in many cases could be in the order of 20-30% gain.

How much is implementing BIM going to cost?

You cannot buy BIM out of a box. You may require making technology investments, but BIM is very much a new way of working, you will need to invest more in doing than buying.

Why do SMEs need to adopt BIM?

SMEs are the bulk of the supply chain for the industry. To sell your products and services in to the construction industry you will probably need to adopt the BIM process to provide the necessary information in a structured and consistent manner.

What is Level 2 BIM?

This is one of the levels of maturity in the BIM journey. This is explained in Figure 1of PAS1192-2.
Simple explanation: Level 2 is file based collaboration with managed information.
Detailed explanation: the principles involve the delivery of the co-ordinated project information to the employer containing graphical and non-graphical information through a single point of responsibility using exchange standards such as COBie.

What is COBie?

Stands for Construction Operations Building Information Exchange
Simple explanation: It is a structured template standard for carrying information.
Detailed explanation: Structured information for the commissioning, operation and maintenance of a project often in a neutral spreadsheet format that will be used to supply data to the employer or operator to populate decision making tools, facilities management and asset management systems

Do I need to adopt BIM?

If you work in the construction industry you are more than likely to need BIM.