1. Why is documentation particularly important in BIM?
The use of BIM in a construction project implies close and efficient collaboration between the different project partners, which requires good communication and clear agreements at the start of the project.
These agreements are defined and collected in a BIM Protocol and/or a BIM execution plan, which must be adapted to the needs of the project (as described in the Employer's information requirements) and to the needs of the project teams. The purpose of these BIM-specific documents is to provide the project teams with all relevant information to help them understand how the flow and management of data is produced and shared throughout the project life cycle.
2. What are some good practices when drafting BIM documentation?
Documents and procedures should be tailored to the needs of the individual project: the “copy and paste” method should be avoided. What proved successful in one BIM project is not necessarily relevant to another BIM project with different objectives and participants.
BIM documentation should only contain information that is necessary and relevant to the project. It should be clear and easily accessible to all project participants as project participants may not have the same experience and expertise in BIM.
BIM documentation should be ”live" and regularly updated to reflect the changing needs of the ongoing project and continuously improve the process.
3. What are the benefits of BIM for clients during the design phase?
For clients with limited construction knowledge, a 3D BIM model is easier to understand than 2D drawings. In addition, virtual reality and simulation tools can be used to enable clients to walk through the entire project in 3D and “look” around the space, as if they are visiting the finished building. In doing so, clients can participate in the design process, ask questions and make suggestions to the project team. It improves the decision-making process and gives an opportunity to rectify any potential misunderstandings before the construction work begins.