Modus debates BIM: “Are you ready to play?”

The latest edition of Modus journal features a Building Information Modelling debate as its cover story and poses the question: “Are you ready to play?”

The May instalment of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors’ journal is headlined by a BIM-related debate looking at whether those who are meant to be using BIM are actually willing to adapt. It states that “BIM is much more than a toy” and it’s “greatest challenge isn’t software or hardware… it’s human nature.”


The panel of BIM professionals making up the debate roundtable include Adrian Malone, head of BIM and knowledge management at Faithful + Gould, Kath Fontana, managing director for BAM FM at BAM Construct UK and Richard Saxon CBE, BIM ambassador for growth at the government BIM Task Group.


Regarding BIM’s monumental potential, Saxon said: “BIM is astonishingly potent –  we haven’t even started understanding what it can do yet.”


Fontana also had some interesting regarding what BIM could achieve: “BIM has the potential to transform the commercial model. It will be a challenge to how we currently price and operate buildings. The lines are getting blurred between BIM and FM [facilities management] – which is brilliant.”


Addressing whether the governments plans to use BIM in all of it’s projects by 2016 is achievable, opinions of the panel were mixed. Saxon stated: “Several departments are well on their way – the MoJ, the Highways Agency, for example; others are not so. I’d say schools are at the back of the pack. Overall, I’d say it’s Level 2 minus, not Level 2 proper.”


Fontana was a little more optimistic. She countered: “I actually see real change taking place. The fact there is even a facilities manager at this table is a massive change. I’ve talked to more people in design and construction in the last 2 years than I have in the previous 20 years.”


The panel also discussed whether BIM will affect the legal profession’s involvement with construction, if innovation can thrive in a low-profit environment and they also give advice to those who are just starting to use BIM.


Another BIM related topic of note in the journal is a guide to BIM by Anna Thompson, area manager and cost management BIM lead UK at Turner & Townsend.


Read May’s ‘Play’ issue of Modus online now by clicking here.


What did you make of the debate?