On the Same Page – BIM and the Single Project View
Collaboration on modern infrastructure projects means more than just people agreeing to communicate and work together. It becomes meaningful when there is a shared data environment that captures a single view of what needs to be done, what’s being done and what has been done.
BIM tools and processes help take away the ambiguity so that project teams, site teams, and supply chains have a common scope for the work. They can also access, share and update project information in real time. This helps projects to run efficiently and also leaves richer and more accurate asset data for the handback process and the planning of future work.
The disparate systems used in the past always had the inherent risk that a brief could be interpreted and recorded in different ways. Different partners would then work diligently on their own version of the truth.
Without the single view there is less opportunity to engage specialist specialist subcontractors early in the process. This misses opportunities to achieve efficiencies through better scheduling, or to avoid clashes and feed specialist knowledge into the design.
Projects we have executed using BIM 360 Field and Glue run much more smoothly. When linked by mobile technology, site teams have instant access to detailed project information. There’s less need to ask questions or access offline information when on site – which can be challenging when working on night-time possessions.
Synergies and Efficiencies
Partners can also see the ‘entire project’, rather than just their piece of it. Synergies and efficiencies are easier to identify. With real time updates, contractors carrying out follow on works can also work with accurate ‘as built’ information, captured during the project, rather than just rely on design drawings and plans.
In the past, the sheer volume of information associated with a major infrastructure project was a significant barrier to better teamwork. Organising the information and making it available to all partners in a format they could use was a huge task.
Now we can all use the same detailed 3D model or 2D plan, with pinned data so that everyone shares a detailed picture of the condition of each element of the asset, the work to be carried out and the current status.
Creating the environment is only part of the challenge. It’s essential that everyone uses it. For a contractor like Osborne this reinforces the importance of a stable and trusted supply chain, which enables us to jointly commit the time needed to understand how to make best use of the tools and data sharing capabilities.
For us BIM is a journey. The further we travel the more enthusiastic we become about its power to transform the way we work with our partners and the results we can achieve together.