Contractors, designers, and decision-makers need to find ways to cut costs as building expenses rise. At the same time, you can’t cut costs while sacrificing quality. You also have to keep in mind that it would be both unwise and dangerous to try to conserve money while compromising the safety of your building. Considering these requirements, it may be a challenge to reduce expenses while simultaneously improving the systems and methods you use for construction.
Building information modeling (BIM) from Autodesk has become a powerful solution to this problem. Due to the intricate, integrated design possibilities that BIM makes possible for its users, it has emerged as far and away the most effective design technology, especially when it comes to reducing preconstruction costs. These expenses include a range of tasks, from your first meeting with the client, to getting a grasp on the project’s scope, to the initial design, to managing materials and labor. Even though every aspect of this process can consume time and money, you can reduce both using BIM.
With sketches, drawings, and models in different forms in places, it can be very difficult to communicate design ideas between different parties. However, if you use BIM, you can make sure you have everything integrated into a centralized workspace that all parties have access to. In this way, all stakeholders can collaborate within a single design system. As a result, everything is interconnected and accessible in a way that facilitates an easy, straightforward collaborative process.
For example, electrical and HVAC systems often have to intersect with each other in various ways. If you have to make a change to your HVAC setup, such as choosing an alternate chiller, this will most likely result in a different draw on your electrical system. When handled correctly, this could present an opportunity to more efficiently manage how power gets distributed through your building.
By using BIM, every time you make these kinds of changes to your HVAC plans, they get automatically reflected in the general design. And because each individual design is integrated with the others, your electrical engineer can see the changes happening in real-time. This helps eliminate expensive miscommunications and redesigns.
Also, using BIM, if you make a change to one facet of the design, it gets automatically applied to the rest of the project. This is important because, in most situations, at least a few people on the team want to see significant adjustments to the design before it gets finalized. You can save significant time and funds if you can avoid redrawing individual drawings each time the main design has to be adjusted. This is where BIM comes to the rescue.
To illustrate this, suppose a client decided to make a change to a stairway design. They want to change it from a straight stairway to a spiral stairway. This could impact many elements of the overall design. For instance, the layout of your interior may have to change; you may need to move windows to optimize lighting; electrical fixtures would have to be shifted — the list goes on.
If each designer involved had to redraw their designs, one by one, this single change may cascade into dozens — or more — people hours than necessary, especially as people share and adjust their drawings. But if you’re using BIM, you can implement all updates automatically, and every pro sees them reflected on their screen in real-time. This makes it easier to reduce the number of times you have to redesign individual elements of your project. In addition, if you’re using Autodesk Desktop Connector, it’s easy to manage the files associated with your project. In this way, you can streamline the process of sharing files with fellow collaborators.
Because BIM has pre-programmed functions that minimize the amount of clicking, dragging, and searching a designer or engineer has to perform, you can streamline the design process. With BIM, you can use a vast library of components instead of having to struggle through the laborious process of drawing individual building details. Additionally, you can see how changes impact the design in real-time, which makes it simpler to decide what to do.
This shortens the time needed to complete a project. BIM allows you to see exactly how the position of a computer server, for example, will impact the space available in a data center. This is much more accurate than trying to estimate with manual measurements and calculations how it would affect the overall space.
Autodesk BIM 360 opens a world of design possibilities, enabling architects, engineers, and others to broaden the scope of what’s possible — and realistic. But it can also make your processes more integrated, reduce the time you spend on redesigns, and boost productivity. Connect with TPM today to see how TPM’s BIM experts can help you realize the potential of BIM for your designs, make more customers happy, and win more contracts.