A Solid Framework: New International BIM Standards Are Now Available
A significant step towards greater global implementation of Building Information Modelling was made in January. The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) recently published new worldwide BIM standards, in a move expected to encourage wider use of BIM across multiple phases of construction projects.
While BIM implementation has followed a positive trajectory in recent years, these international standards could lay the foundation for widespread adoption of the collaborative process worldwide.
Our latest blog post will explore the importance of this announcement and list some of the potential benefits for our industry moving forward.
What Is Included in the ISO Standards?
A lack of industry-wide policy related to BIM has been a lingering concern for certain construction professionals, with many reluctant to invest in new processes without a widely-accepted industry framework. The two ISO standards, linked below, outline the value of BIM when it comes to digital transformation of the global built environment.
ISO 19650-1 refers to relevant principles and concepts that apply to the entire lifecycle of a BIM project. This can encompass everything from strategic planning and design phases through to repair practices as a built asset nears the end of its usage. The recommendations given are scalable to suit varying project sizes and complexities.
ISO 19650-2 outlines new requirements for information processes and management as they apply in the delivery phase of a BIM project. As with the first standard, this document can be adapted to suit necessary scale.
Both documents provide recommendations for an ideal BIM framework, with advice given on exchanging, recording, versioning and organisation for all involved parties. The above two standards are the first in a planned series. A standard that outlines best practice for managing the operational phase of assets is planned, as well as a standard dedicated to security in BIM and smart asset management.
Jons Sjogren, who acted as chair of the subcommittee that worked on the standards, acknowledged that current British BIM standards were a strong influence on their work.
“The ISO 19650 was developed on the basis of the tried-and-tested British standard BS 1192 and publicly available specification PAS 1192-2, which have already been shown to help users save up to 22% in construction costs.”
Sjogren went on to state that collaboration on global projects can be improved through the ISO standards, with all relevant designers and contractors able to gain a better grasp on information management.
How Can These New Standards Benefit Our Industry?
These two standards will go a long way toward eroding the misconceptions that still surround BIM in the construction industry. Some have questioned the value of BIM for smaller projects, lack an understanding of how to get started and even harbour false perceptions about the costs associated with BIM.
For several years now, BIM processes have been widely accepted as imperative to the future of the built environment. In practice, projects that utilise BIM feature faster delivery time, improved collaboration among stakeholders and reductions in change orders and overall costs.
The new ISO standards will support systematic adoption by giving decision-makers the confidence to go ahead with BIM. They will be able to accurately calculate the long-term value of BIM for their specific enterprise, before adopting new processes that are accepted as best practice worldwide.
19650-1 and 19650-2 are well-researched standards that were created with significant input from industry professionals. While by no means the final piece in the puzzle for worldwide BIM implementation, they add credence to the notion that BIM is here to stay and represent a big step in the right direction.
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