BIM is basically "the process of generating and managing information about a *building during its entire life cycle".
There are many definitions of what BIM is and, in many ways, it depends on your point of view or what you seek to gain from the approach. Sometimes it’s easier to say what BIM isn’t!
- It’s not just 3D CAD
- It’s not just a new technology application
- It’s not next generation, it here and now!
Other than a digital tool set you don’t use BIM, it is way of working, it’s what you do: information modelling and information management in a team environment.
The rich 3D experience; digital simulations; rehearsals of all stages of the design, build and operate process; and the information within the models facilitate well informed decision making resulting in better business outcomes, clarity, improved communication, de-risking and ultimately better efficiency.
What can BIM working do that conventional working can’t?
BIM models associate additional information about asset components with geometry in a structured way. This lets us build project documentation in a much more structured and on line way.
BIM-enabled working allows this information to be shared by different project participants and also between different stages of design, construction and operation. For example, an engineer is able to use information sourced from the architect to prepare energy calculations or a contractor can check the coordination of contributions from different members of the project team. Programme and cost information can also be captured using BIM. Most importantly, BIM has the potential to allow information about the use of the building to be collated and held in formats useable by the operators of facilities – enabling buildings and other assets to be used and maintained efficiently.