We are an industry where machine and computer power enhance the work of the person, in many cases, making the very jobs we undertake possible. Modeling wouldn’t be feasible if not for the computing power of today’s equipment, from Robotic Total Stations (RTS) units to laptops and cranes.
During challenging times, the game-changer for businesses is often increased productivity, which translates into better margins and the flexibility to take on additional revenue-generating projects. One of the best ways electrical contractors can reap productivity benefits is through the use of building information modeling (BIM).
The BIM process is more than creating 3D models – it also facilitates management and decision-making. In addition to modeling the physical and functional aspects of a building in 3D, BIM software allows you to store and manipulate information on costs, time and suppliers, to name just a few. Automatic updating and collaboration tools help reduce potential problems that can result in lost productivity.
How does the BIM process improve productivity? Here is the eVolve MEP list of the top six productivity benefits:
1. Visualizing projects.
Yes, it is true, an image speaks better than a thousand words. Using BIM is better for 3D visualization versus 2D. 3D modeling gives the big picture on a project. You can zoom in on details and view things from multiple angles. As a pre-construction tool, the design becomes more vivid to your team. Having a greater overview from the beginning minimizes expensive and time-consuming changes later.
2. Making changes.
Changes are inevitable; however, using BIM lets you manage them significantly better. The BIM process allows for real-time changes in order to adapt to new information, such as site conditions. Schedule changes can be communicated accurately and quickly, and improved coordination enhances productivity so projects can be completed on time or even early.
3. Detecting clashes.
Because all project information goes into one model, it becomes much easier to detect interferences and prevent potential field problems. Using BIM, clashes can be resolved earlier. Automated clash detection helps reduce the amount of rework needed and avoids the rush of last minute changes. Multiple disciplines can also review and comment on the model before going onsite.
4. Tracking costs.
Nobody likes surprises, particularly when it comes to project costs. BIM software allows project teams to control costs and confirm that all changes are accounted for. By using transparent tracking of all changes, teams can see financial markups from change orders and the impact of changes on the overall budget.
5. Managing data.
The BIM process enables access to important information like detailed specifications and performance data. With multiple team members using project data, having real-time collaboration reduces the risk of wasting time by using outdated or incorrect information. In addition, a Revit add-on tool like eVolve Electrical will automate spooling, hanger placement, routing, kitting and conduits bends to save valuable detailers’ time.
6. Optimizing maintenance.
At the end of construction, the BIM process allows for smooth project handover by connecting data generated during design and construction to existing building maintenance software. BIM software can provide an accurate, ongoing digital record of building information that is invaluable for future building operations and maintenance. An as-built model of the new building can be turned over to the owner, which is far more accurate than the traditional set of drawings, which may not have reflected field modifications.
As BIM-friendly electrical content data is developed, the world of BIM continues to open up to electrical contractors being included in the building design process. When manufactured electrical products are included in the building model early in the design process, it is the perfect opportunity for you, as the electrical contractor, to take advantage of the increased productivity the BIM process offers.
When you’re ready to explore the ways BIM can give your business better margins and the flexibility to take on additional projects, contact eVolve MEP and talk to an industry expert about reaping the productivity benefits of BIM.
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Making the investment in Building Information Modeling (BIM) systems can transform construction operations from the start of any project, leading to more efficient use of time and materials in all phases of the build, including long after the active construction project is completed. Through BIM, savings can be realized for the stakeholders in the project–from the building owner to subcontractors–and the operator of the structure benefits far into the future.
While economic situation brings focus on improving ways to increase efficiency in the workplace, these money-saving ideas should be in place during all times. They are best practices that not only save money, but they also save time and cut down on waste, which critical in these eco-aware times.