What's next for BIM?

Source: PSE Feb/March 2018

After some mostly positive findings in last year’s National Building Information Modelling (BIM) Report, PSE’s Luana Salles considers what the future holds for the industry.

In 2017, just a year after the government’s BIM mandate took effect across the public sector, the NBS discovered that BIM adoption had reached a high point in the UK: Level 2 was already well established in the industry, slowly but surely becoming the ‘new normal’ for carrying out design work.

In its National BIM Report, the organisation’s chief executive, Richard Waterhouse, proudly wrote in the document’s foreword: “To change a relatively static industry like construction in such a short period is nothing short of astonishing and is best in class at a global level.”

The findings were indeed astounding. A majority of respondents thought the government was on the right track with BIM, awareness of the tool is near-universal, and adoption is up – with a whopping 62% of practices using BIM on some projects, marking an 8% year-on-year growth.

“The 12 months preceding this report have seen the most rapid BIM growth since 2014, suggesting that the UK Government’s BIM mandate is having the intended effect,” the report explained.

Almost two-thirds of those questioned also believed BIM will help bring time efficiencies to the construction industry, reducing time from inception to completion of projects, while 70% were confident in the potential for cost savings in the design/build/maintain lifecycle.

The survey, which was the first national look at BIM adoption since the mandate came into force, was, however, not wholly positive. It concluded that the government’s vision of making the UK the world leader in BIM has not yet been realised – at least not according to the design community. But this does not necessarily mean we are lagging behind.

“Only 19% agree that we are the world leader. Perhaps the government set the bar a little high? The UK is certainly one of a handful of countries that is leading BIM development and implementation,” the report explained.

“Other countries are looking to the UK to learn what we are planning, doing, and have done, to inform their own BIM strategy. So if not the leader, the UK is certainly a leader.”

Nevertheless, and despite early signs that the mandate was having the desired effect in ensuring widespread Level 2 adoption, a majority of respondents thought the government was failing to enforce the directive properly. A third were not clear on what they had to do to comply with the mandate, while many cited a lack of client education limiting the effect of the mandate to reap the intended rewards.

And while 55% described themselves as confident in BIM – compared to just 35% in 2012 – 90% said its adoption requires changes in workflow, practices and procedures.

Collaborative living

But the mandate itself is just a step along the journey of implementing BIM. Like Waterhouse explained in his foreword, as the mandate becomes embedded across the UK, “thoughts are naturally turning to what next” – with potentially significant future technologies including robotics, 3D printing, future cities and machine learning.

“Through social media and web use, we are starting to get used to ‘collaborative consumerism.’ As we come to give more and more information about ourselves in the future through our use of tomorrow’s buildings and cities, will we see ‘collaborative living’?” asked the chief executive.

“That’s for the future, a future that is now assured to come through BIM.”




There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment


public sector executive tv

more videos >

latest public sector news

Somerset council criticises financial resiliency index and media speculation on its finances

24/09/2018Somerset council criticises financial resiliency index and media speculation on its finances

Somerset County Council has expressed their concerns over the proposed financial resiliency index scheme, saying that “having a relative ra... more >
Edinburgh council plans out £30m cuts to tackle four-year £106m black hole

24/09/2018Edinburgh council plans out £30m cuts to tackle four-year £106m black hole

Edinburgh Council have announced a wave of consultations and set out their four-year plan to tackle their budget gap and growing strains on servi... more >
Cash-strapped Somerset council might still fail to set ‘sustainable budget’ despite massive cuts

24/09/2018Cash-strapped Somerset council might still fail to set ‘sustainable budget’ despite massive cuts

Somerset County Council might still fail to make sufficient savings to establish a “sustainable budget” even after the latest wave of... more >
149x260 PSE Subscribe button

the raven's daily blog

Social value: what is it and why?

14/09/2018Social value: what is it and why?

Ben Carpenter, chief executive of Social Value UK, discusses the worth of social value, and argues that, before we start measuring social value, we should ask clearly: what is it, and why? Social value is so much more than a value for money exercise. If you see social value as simply a new catchphrase for ‘efficiency savings’... more >
read more blog posts from 'the raven' >


Michael King: Time for Ombudsman reform

06/08/2018Michael King: Time for Ombudsman reform

Michael King first joined the Local Government Ombudsman service back in 2004 as deputy ombudsman. At the start of 2017, he was appointed as the ... more >
Helping a city understand itself

06/08/2018Helping a city understand itself

SPONSORED INTERVIEW The urban landscape is changing. How can local authorities keep up with citizen behaviour? Stephen Leece, managing directo... more >
Modern policing: the future is bright

06/08/2018Modern policing: the future is bright

SPONSORED INTERVIEW The public sector, and policing in particular, has often been criticised as being slow to adapt to change. But now, says L... more >
Data at the heart of digital transformation

03/04/2018Data at the heart of digital transformation

SPONSORED INTERVIEW Grant Caley, UK & Ireland chief technologist at NetApp, speaks to PSE’s Luana Salles about the benefits of movin... more >

last word

The importance of openness after Grenfell

The importance of openness after Grenfell

Following the recent Grenfell Tower tragedy, Lord Porter, chairman of the LGA, argues that if the public are going to have faith in the safety testing process then everything must be out in the o... more > more last word articles >

editor's comment

25/10/2017Take a moment to celebrate

Devolution, restructuring and widespread service reform: from a journalist’s perspective, it’s never been a more exciting time to report on the public sector. That’s why I could not be more thrilled to be taking over the reins at PSE at this key juncture. There could not be a feature that more perfectly encapsulates this... read more >

public sector focus