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Facility Management and BIM Workshop – How Research Can Add Value to the Debate

Building information modelling (BIM) could help to optimise the efficiency of soft services delivery, according to speakers at an event held last month at the University of Greenwich

The idea that soft services could particularly benefit from BIM was one of several discussions at the workshop event, entitled Facility Management and BIM Workshop – How Research Can Add Value to the Debate, which was organised jointly by Simon Ashworth from the ZHAW and Giulia Carbonari from the University of Greenwich.

Attendees came from both public and private sector organisations to discuss ways in which BIM could aid FMs in management, sustainability and cost analysis and how BIM should integrate with FM in practice. Representation included the Government Property Unit (Cabinet Office), FM Service providers, BIM special interest groups, large construction and architectural companies as well as industry professional bodies including both BIFM and RICS.

Key issues to come out of the workshop included the following:

  • BIM is becoming increasingly important and relevant as a key topic to facility managers and construction and other industry professionals as it is being driven by the UK government mandate for its introduction for all government projects by 2016
  • In order to deliver maximum value for money and to realise the best added value the focus of BIM should be driven by top-level corporate and FM strategy, which will then feed directly into tactical and operational service delivery.
  • The early involvement of FM is essential in procurement projects to ensure that value for money is delivered across the whole life of the assets and to ensure that BIM is tailored to meet the requirements of the operational phase of the building