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. In the hotseat today is Gemma Lennon, former BIM4SME member and Senior Project Consultant at Saracen Interiors.
What does Gemma think the industry is doing Best at the moment?
I think the main highlight is that the industry are showcasing what BIM is doing for them, sharing their experiences and a community has been created making many work together who hadn’t before because of competitive barriers.
I think the industry is trying to show clients how BIM can benefit their property life cycle but much more work is needed in this area.
What is Gemma’s worst BIM experience and what does she think are Bad traits of the industry?
My worst experience has to be the lack of support and availability for those smaller companies, sole traders and generally those who haven’t the buying power to incorporate BIM into their business independently.
The industry changed at the time of the recession and subsequent years that followed; many individuals were made redundant or lost jobs because of the collapse of their company and decided to be become sole traders or start smaller companies with 1-2 other ex-colleagues so the industry has become an industry of many micro companies.
However software providers and BIM active groups who run BIM conferences and events etc do not seem to recognise this and are not incorporating their messages to suit this new wave of industry the has changed and developed over the last 6–7 years. The BIM events ran are still extremely intimidating to those who are new to BIM, or wanting to find out more and in-turn companies are wiping BIM off their business agenda for now.
Don’t get me wrong, the BIM community that has been created is fabulous and great to see segments of the industry coming together but there is a whole market that are being left out to cold. It’s exciting BIM, and when you’re in it, I get that you don’t really want to have to look back, you want run with it and take it as far as it can go. That’s the problem, not many want to dedicate time to teach, adapt language and demonstrate how BIM will work for this lost market.
What lessons does Gemma think can be learned from both?
Larger companies need smaller companies, that’s a fact. Smaller companies want those projects that have no ROI for the larger companies. They need each other. What would be great is if a BIM mentoring programme was set up, where those already embraced BIM can be connected with SMEs, sole traders etc and be there as their contact to learn more. Meet up say once every few months, have a direct number to call and chat about next steps etc. This could be less intimidating than the many BIM events created and attended by the BIM community.
By doing this, imagine, we could all become together, work together and make our industry consistently the best industry in the economy, more attractive and exciting to those outside of the industry, be the best and better leading industry throughout the world just by getting one person with knowledge making friends with another who is wanting to learn more about BIM.
I haven’t worked with a company yet who has embraced BIM but I still feel passionately about driving it forward as I know it is good for the industry. I haven’t read the BIM jargon dictionary, I haven’t tried to understand the BIM flow charts but I do know if we crack on, we could do wonders for this industry and our clients through the adoption of BIM by all in some shape or form as it will mean better working together, long-term savings, attractive industry prospects for those new to it and global industry leadership.
Gemma Lennon has worked in the construction/property industry for nearly 15 years with a number of companies, the majority being SMEs providing business development support and marketing assistance.
Gemma currently works with Saracen Interiors, a SME company in operation for 30 years who opened an office in Yorkshire last year. She has also been involved with BIM development in the industry since 2012. In early 2012, she presented to the BIM Task Group‘s David Philp and Mark Bew, the effect BIM is having on SMEs and what can be done to support them. Having worked with BIM4SME until recently and having seen BIMs benefits to the industry and the positive impact it could have on its credibility, Gemma continues to feel strongly about the importance of embracing BIM but also making BIM embraceable to all.
Keep up with Gemma via social media by following her on Twitter.
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