John Hunt spoke with UK Construction Online about whether a BIM mandate similar to the UK Government’s would be something he would like to see introduced in Ireland. Hunt believes that a broader public sector approach that the UK has taken is not what Enterprise Ireland are currently investigating. They are instead conducting research in a more fragmented model.
“From Enterprise Ireland’s standpoint, we see the skillsets that have been developed through projects in Ireland as extremely marketable internationally,” says John. “We are working in industrial engineering, design and delivery and see BIM as being enormously attractive to these markets and a real differentiator in markets that have been traditionally difficult to differentiate in.
“We have developed our own capability programmes but in terms of getting some further public sector buy-in, Enterprise Ireland are one of a small number of lead organisations that are really helping with promotion of public sector adoption. That began with our appointment of CITA, the Construction IT Alliance, as our research partners in 2015.
“This is a national BIM steering committee and delivery group that will be looking at the most appropriate route for a wider implementation of BIM within Ireland. That will involve the continuing discussion around a mandate but also the intelligent and appropriate area of the application of a mandate. So rather than effecting a mandate across the public sector, it will debate whether a mandate across different departments may have the biggest impact, where the benefits can be best felt and where the negative impacts of a mandate could be managed more successfully.”
Is Hunt still seeing resistance to adopt BIM? He explains that moss people he speaks with are utilising BIM to an extent, but it is still early days for them and they a majority of their work is carried out traditionally: “I think that’s absolutely crucial in our current thinking – the tipping point, the point of no return. A lot of the companies I talk to are doing a bit of BIM on a few projects but the majority is traditional construction. They say: “We are doing BIM, we like it and it’s good but we still have to work quite hard at it to make it work”.
We’re not quite at the point yet where we couldn’t just fall back to doing traditional. It’s still a small proportion of workload and of employee roles within companies and the transition to the majority of projects is going to be the real challenge for the industry over the next few years.”
Read the full interview over at UK Construction Media.