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.
Construction crews on the ground turns ideas into reality. Concept, design, modeling and logistics is realized when the people in the field construct the building. Keeping those teams in the field connected to the updates and changes made in the design office or the shop is key to ensuring those changes make it into the final product.
Maintaining the connection
Maintaining the field’s connection with your BIM department and shop through technology provides the easiest opportunity for ensuring every team member in the workflow is in the know. Using portable devices like cell phones and tablets allows supervisors and foreman in the field to be updated at the earliest moment of changes to designs.
This kind of automatic integration of information plays an important role in streamlining the project, making sure changes are received, processed, understood and implemented. It cuts down on rework in the field, increases the amount of material that can effectively be pre-fabbed, and improves the efficiency with which a project is operated.
By sharing information digitally, data can be passed from the shop or office to the field–and vice versa– instantaneously. When specs are changed, the information is loaded into the appropriate designs, which are then modified to exhibit those changes, along with a notation to identify the date and time the change was made, as well as the person who modified it.
In the field, real-time updates can be transmitted to the appropriate tradesman orcontractor, but the data supplied by the field can also inform the shop and theoffice about the project. As sections of the job are reported as finished, real-timedata on everything for progress reports to materials management timetables canbe updated, providing a comprehensive overview of the project completion forstakeholders.
These updates from the office to the shop to the field can then be consolidated into a report that will be used for the project commissioning, and it can continue to be used in the operation and maintenance of the building throughout its useful life. The importance of this data sharing and integration goes far beyond the ribbon-cutting to daily operation of the structure.
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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.