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Top 3 BIM Barriers (and How to Overcome Them)

The B1M | 5:01

Top 3 BIM Barriers (and How to Overcome Them)

The B1M

21 October 2015

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GREAT news, you’ve decided to adopt building information modelling (BIM). You’re on the right track and know where you want to be… but what barriers will you face along the way? Here we highlight three of the key challenges and offer some advice on how to overcome them.

Barrier 3: Cost

Depending on your role or discipline, implementing BIM is probably going to cost some time and money at the front end on things like training or software. “Those things are short term and you need to offset your investment in them with a longer term view of the value it can bring” explains Fred.

His advice is to create a solid business case, unique to the needs and objectives of your own organisation, and to get the leaders of your organisation to endorse it. “This isn’t just another request for development money” says Fred. “Adopting BIM forces organisations to consider many other aspects of the way they work and can change their wider business for the better”

Barrier 2: Lack of Client Demand

Whilst it might be the second barrier on our countdown, Fred describes putting-off BIM implementation because your client hasn’t asked for it as ‘the biggest excuse in the book’. “When you buy a car, you shouldn’t expect to have to specify the manufacturing process to make sure that it gets built properly. You’re paying a lot of money to have the experts do that for you” he adds.

"It's our second barrier, but the biggest excuse in the book" 

Overcoming this is, in part, linked to elements of the cost barrier above. To avoid being left behind or outdone by the competition, organisations need to realise the business case for them and invest in BIM now for the value it can bring – rather than waiting for someone else to ask them to do it.

Fred also suggests taking the time to understand your client’s business or organisational objectives in their own terms. This can enable you to develop a set of Employer’s Information Requirements (EIRs) in conjunction with them, in order to deliver the right data at the right part in the process to meet their needs.

Barrier 1: Culture

Fred describes three groups of people in construction: a minority of BIM enthusiasts; those who openly oppose it (and whom are entitled to their views), and; a silent majority in the middle formed of several hundred million people.

“They are the people you’re most likely to encounter on your BIM implementation journey” he says. “They are the people we want to reach with our videos. They are the people that will decide where the future of this industry really goes. They are the people that matter”.

"There's a silent majority in the middle. They are the people that matter" 

The way to reach them is not by mentioning BIM at all: “Take it on an individual basis first and set out how a different approach can make their working lives easier, more efficient and more enjoyable. Tailor the value proposition to them” Fred explains. Doing that simultaneously, in several parts of your organisation will steadily, over time, shift your culture.

We wish you the very best of luck in overcoming these barriers and implementing BIM. If you need any more advice drop us a note in the comments below or have look through our helpful videos on The B1M channel.

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