Gerry McFadden – BIM Manager Middle East WSP
An old saying states that ‘a picture is worth a thousand words’. This statement rings even truer when considering BIM Much has been written concerning BIMs prowess as a data rich source of information for consultants and contractors.
We sometimes overlook BIMs merits as a powerful tool for clients. One of the project team’s main goals is to have a satisfied client.
With BIM we can engage the client and involve them more in the design and construction process. This will capture their requirements more clearly and help deliver an end result that most accurately represents their project vision.
A successful BIM project is built on a high standard of communication and collaboration. 2D drawings are a poor way for a client to visualise a project. We all inhabit a three dimensional world and one advantage of BIM is being able to create a 3D virtual building model before construction begins.
If the client is able to immerse themselves in an accurate 3D model it is by far the best way to effectively communicate sometimes complex scenarios. This ensures that the client is fully in tune with how a project is progressing and can feedback into the process.
Many cloud based solutions now exist which bring the visual power of BIM to anyone with internet access. This avoids the need for the client to have expensive software, training and computers to simply review their BIM projects. They can now review and interrogate the latest published models online using their tablet devices. Navigation of cloud based models can be achieved with only minimal instruction.
The client can view the model from all angles and positions. This avoids a situation where the end result falls short of what the client wanted in the first place. Only when walking through a virtual model can the client truly appreciate the physical scale and environment that the buildings end users will occupy.
For example, if it takes a long time to walk through the virtual model it effectively demonstrates the large size of a project. An end user client may decide that more facilities are required to better serve the buildings occupiers.
Each client may have different goals. However all share the goal that their project lives up to expectations. BIM is an indispensable tool to help us all realise this.