8 tips to accelerate your BIM project
Working on a open BIM project requires lots of communication. As a result we might be spending too much time either searching for information or correcting mistakes due to incorrect, out-of-date files. Since we are not working alone on BIM projects we should also be aware that the stronger and faster single members can work, the more beneficial it is for the total. Thus, an acceleration should take part for all members.
How can we accelerate the communication of a BIM project?
To accelerate in the preparation fase, make it easy to find the information. Centralize the communication. One place to look at and accessible 24/7. No searching. It can be that simple! Connect to the daily used applications of the members. The users will adapt easily because the communication is in their own application where the work has to be done. No need to switch between applications.
TIP 1. Make it easy to filter information
The foundation to a good acceleration starts with you. Yes – you! You yourself do not want to be bothered with useless, time-consuming information. Good quality and no overwhelming quantity. Use BCF in your workflow. Take time to set the right labels to an issue. If you want to be more efficient, you also need to communicate efficiently towards others.
TIP 2. Communicate using BCF
Communicating BIM Issues can be highly effective. The BCF 2.1 (BIM Collaboration Format) offers a variety of possibilities such as the native integration in all major BIM tools. Viewpoints make it obligatory to search the right components and location in the model. Choose the right keywords and the effective labeling. Choose to whom it concerns, where, when and how it should be solved. Make it only visible to the right people. Don’t bother others with too much information.
TIP 3. Use a centralized data location
Choose one single place of information where everybody can reach the needed information. Preferably a BIM issue management system like BIMcollab that merges all items to one location. No need to have multiple emails and spreadsheets to gather all the needed information. Centralize it. Let it be found easy.
TIP 4. Simplify the workflow of changes
Don’t lose time by switching between different applications. Use special plugins and communicate directly within your own BIM software! Some BCF plugins have powerful filters to let you focus directly on your own work. The BCF will help you find the location directly. The comments and labels will assist in the actions needed. Solve the problems directly, let others know, update the centralized issues and focus on the challenges ahead. Free BCF plugins are often available via the website of your BIM software or can be downloaded here.
TIP 5. Accelerate the coordinating workflow
As already said, coordinating E-mails, Skype, links, phone calls, PDF’s, scans and even sticky notes can be overwhelming. All BIM issues should be in one place and automatically merged. No need to search or manually redirect essential information to other places. BIM issue management systems can create extra insights. Keep track of the progress. Know directly where the critical workload is emerging. Powerful filters assist in the search of the needed information. Work effectively and transparent.
TIP 6. Make design reviews meetings more effectively
Issues often have several solutions. By understanding the reason why they occur, solutions can be found easier and quicker. Show, if needed, all the forces that act on the object during your meetings! Filter the issues according to the attendees of a meeting. Make the discussion accessible and show the issues using the IFC models in a BIM Viewer which has a bidirectional connection to the issue database. Let other parties attend the meetings and let them learn.
TIP 7. Keep track of all changes
Every change to the issues should be kept. No lost files, no searching into email archives. No later discussions on what was done or not. The saved issue history is the foundation for a valid line of communication. We are embracing open workspaces and transparent offices. Embrace transparent communication as well.
TIP 8. The next project should benefit from your lessons learned
At the end of this process: take time to recapitulate! Learn from your mistakes, write them down, update your process documentation, make an even better start-up document. Your next BIM project team will benefit from this.
Accelerate faster the next time – and be curious!
Just step up, walk to your colleague, fellow advisor or collaborating company, sit behind their workplace, start their application and learn their ways. Learn how they work, be open to discussions, ask their feedback, learn their needs. Explain your ways and each other’s workflow and accelerate. Good communication is essential!