Answered from either a personal or industry-viewpoint perspective, Best BIM Bad BIM sees a member of the #GlobalBIMCrew divulge their best and worst BIM experiences and what they have learned from both. Today’s interviewee is Elizabeth Peters, Associate Director, BIM Centre, UAE and Oman at AECOM. Learn more about Peters’ BIM “pet peeve” and more below.
What are Elizabeth’s Best BIM experiences?
My absolute best BIM experiences are moments where people on teams I work with “get it”. When I say “it”, it could be BIM basic or something more complex, but it doesn’t matter. Each of these moments represents someone starting to understand the value of the technology. When you add those moments up across a team, an office, a company, an industry, the world – that’s when we achieve the vision of changing the face of design and construction. It’s what literally gets me out of bed in the morning, it’s fantastic.
What does Elizabeth think is Bad about BIM?
My biggest pet peeve is when I’m asked directly “So, how much does BIM cost?” That is a legitimate question which I would ask if someone was trying to convince me on a new technology. I suppose what irritates me the most about it is I don’t have an answer right now. There are empirical studies with data and trends, but I think we’d be in such a better position to move the industry forward if we could answer that question simply and definitively. It also frustrates me because I realize I haven’t done a good enough job in selling the vision.
This leads me on to the worst trends in BIM. I see and hear a lot of entities selling BIM capability to clients who never see value. This could be because the “BIM seller” doesn’t know what they’re doing, but they can really only get away with this if the client doesn’t understand what they’re asking for. There is so much activity, good intentions and aspirations when it comes to BIM, but when it doesn’t deliver because it’s not understood, it sets things back. I’d like to see this changed.
What has Elizabeth learned from both her Best and Bad experiences?
Both of these point to the critical importance (and personal reward!) of educating and raising awareness within our industry of what BIM truly is, what it is not, how it can deliver value, and what needs done to unlock that value. My de facto mantra within my team is “We’ll get there”. This is an important perspective to maintain when attempting to do something as audacious as changing an entire industry – one day at a time!