Company Spotlight does exactly what it says on the proverbial tin. Learn all about the history, BIM journey and latest Building Information Modelling developments of some of the industry’s most-recognisable names. Office furniture manufacturer-turned-BIM adopting success story Flexiform have the limelight cast on them in this instalment.
Flexiform Business Furniture have been designing and manufacturing office furniture for some 40 years, with a 118,000 square foot manufacturing plant in West Yorkshire and offices and distribution warehouses in both Edinburgh and London servicing the entire UK. Flexiform are long-term CCS (OGC) framework contractors, with a reputation for providing high quality designs and British manufactured office furniture to the public sector, blue chip companies and to the A+D community. Growth and investment over the last five years has helped Flexiform continue to provide office furniture and interior solutions to major clients throughout the UK.
Flexiform began their BIM experience in 2014 after recruiting a highly experienced designer with extensive Revit/BIM modelling experience. As the Flexiform product range is constantly evolving to meet clients’ needs, the benefits of BIM modelling soon became obvious. The integration between existing engineering, sales and planning software packages is almost seamless, allowing fast and accurate data exchange between internal departments and our clients.
After a recommendation from one of their business partners, Flexiform decided to have some of their content created, distributed and promoted via bimstore: “Choosing to work with bimstore was an easy decision,” explained Sales Director, Nick Saunders. “The A + D community are aware of the benefits of BIM modelling and some of our major clients and supply chain already use bimstore; it’s such a useful, one stop resource. It was actually one of our supply partners who actually recommended we look at working with bimstore.”
“Since creating our BIM library, we have changed our whole way of approaching a project. When designing a new office interior, our design team use bimstore as a client would; looking for product ideas and downloading all of the information for a project from a single portal. The site is easy to navigate and all the information we need is there – it just makes sense.“
Due to the nature of Flexiform’s CCS contracts, full details of current projects are highly confidential, however, Saunders added: “Flexiform work with some of the largest Government departments and the best known household names in the UK, and of course let’s not forget the close relationships we have with the A + D community, particularly in London.”
“There is no doubt creating a BIM library for a company with a product range as large as Flexiform is a huge undertaking. Substantial time and investment is needed to get a complex project of this size underway. It has taken 12 months and a lot of effort to get our BIM library to a standard that we are happy with, but the feedback on the quality of our models has been excellent.”
Flexiform now have an extensive BIM library, covering all of their ranges old and new. Thankfully, the impact of BIM for Flexiform was instantly positive. The Flexiform engineering department can now export manufacturing models directly to Revit, allowing 100% accurate models to be included in space plans and interior design work. In turn sales benefit from clean, accurate models and 100% accurate product schedules from these space plans. Finally, using BIM models gives accurate pricing and 100% accurate product schedules for our installation teams out on site.
“BIM has fundamentally changed the way we work, helping us to deliver quick, high quality design solutions to all of our clients,” elaborated Saunders.
“Our blocks have been well received with the A + D community. With such an wide range of products available online, architects have found entire office projects (building models) can be populated, specified and quoted in hours rather than weeks. Our Flagship ranges – Pico Bench and Freestor Office lockers have both received huge attention.”
2015 looks set to break all records again, with Flexiform already having designed and launched two new product ranges exclusively via bimstore – Parq our new collaborative working system and Olio, a fully wire managed desking/storage combination product. Further meeting table ranges are due for launch by the end of the year.