The benefits of using BIM in your everyday design

Jessica Göransson - 2017-12-06

BIM is often highlighted as a benefit in large-scaled projects, but Zoltan Toth, general manager at CADLine, argues for the advantages of also using BIM in smaller day-to-day projects.

The benefits of using BIM in computer aided design is indisputable, and this is often illustrated using large building projects such as skyscrapers, power plants or Stadiums. The fact that BIM is making these large-scaled projects easier and more efficient is no secret, but what about the medium or smaller projects in the everyday life? Are there any advantages using BIM when drawing houses or apartment blocks?

“Designers need BIM implementation examples they can relate to.
A skyscraper will not do this time”

Zoltan Toth, general manager at CADLine, stresses the benefit of also using BIM in smaller day-to day projects, but points out that clients have a hard time making the decision to start working in BIM. This is, as far he can see, for three reasons:

“Firstly, there is still a considerable lack of knowledge. Many are unsure about what BIM actually covers, or offers for small and mid-sized projects. Luckily, there are many excellent initiatives to clear the mist on this one. Secondly, professionals know that starting to work in BIM could mean considerable investment – a BIM software is needed, and so are training sessions, which could update the existing knowledge to the BIM requirements. Thirdly, there is an obvious fear of the unknown.”

To combat these three hardships Zoltan has demonstrated the benefits BIM offers for everyday projects. The first major benefit is that there is already a vast amount of data available, which can be harnessed using BIM;

“At a manufacturer library like BIMobject, freely available online, we can download building elements with the right geometry and required data. This easy access to data-enriched actual building objects allows us to be more accurate, and communicate our designs more clearly “, he says.

Another major benefit BIM offers is better communication with other stakeholders. The exchange of BIM data is pushed to a common platform, which is the IFC (industry foundation classes) format, supported by all major BIM software.

“The IFC file format means that you do not have to worry about data loss, neither about what software others are using. You will be able to work with them, no matter what, and a great symbiosis of software ecosystems will be realized”, Zoltan says.

BIM is about data exchange and accessibility, all stakeholders have access to the building data - and this results in better collaboration.

“As working in BIM allows better cooperation with our peers, we see now that switching to BIM is in fact a strategic decision for SMEs, which could result in a considerable boost of their business.”

Zoltan argues that these two benefits – BIM data depositories like BIMobject, and seamless cooperation with others – are not limited to large projects. They deliver value even on a smaller level, as you always have to work with others, regardless of building a skyscraper or apartment blocks.

“I say that the switch to BIM should not be motivated by our fear or imminent danger of BIM becoming compulsory. Instead, we should get familiar with BIM because even now, even for smaller projects it offers unprecedented benefits – more accurate design and better collaboration. This is something we surely can’t afford to miss”.

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