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Busting 5D BIM Myths

In the world of 5D BIM, there can be a lot of misinformation out there about what BIM means and what to do with it. How do you know what is real and what is just a myth? We will attempt to debunk some of the biggest 5D BIM myths out there.

Firstly, one of the biggest that we see: 5D BIM will replace me.
This is a fear of several Quantity Surveyors and estimators that we come across, and as such, they approach BIM with a great deal of trepidation. Some people think that with BIM in play, everything will become totally automatic and they will thereby become redundant. Now, while BIM does make things a great deal easier (as any good technological evolution should), it will certainly not replace the quantity surveyor or estimator on a project. Rather, it means that they can spend their time not measuring quantities, but instead examining them and providing feedback to other members of the project. Their expertise is invaluable in ensuring that the extracted quantities actually make sense and are applied to the Bill of Quantities or estimate correctly.

Next, we hear a lot from people: 5D BIM is too expensive.
Certainly, initial costs of both training and software/hardware expenditure can sometimes seem steep (depending on the amount of people in your team). However, the ROI is huge when you start to apply BIM on your projects. Because BIM allows you to extract data directly from the model, it can make your projects faster, more accurate and eliminate wastage, which saves money. We have personally heard from many customers who note that they have saved tens of thousands of dollars on their projects after implementing BIM. Furthermore, implementing 5D BIM allows you to provide fast feedback directly to designers, which can also result in further cost savings for the project overall.

Sometimes we hear this one: 5D BIM is too hard.
We get it- it’s difficult to learn something new! Sometimes, if you’re a BIM newbie, it can be totally overwhelming to look at BIM as a whole and wonder where to even get started. However, once you get the hang of it, you’ll be wondering how you ever did without it. It’s important to make sure you don’t try and tackle it alone. Firstly, get some 5D BIM software that’s easy to use and understand, such as CostX®. CostX® not only provides world-leading 5D BIM functionality, and supports a huge range of BIM file types (ensuring you’ll always be supported), but you can also use accompanying 2D files for your project as well, which helps make the transition to BIM so much easier, especially if you’re receiving incomplete models. If you don’t do your research on software properly, you could end up with a dud program that will just hinder your efforts. Secondly, and this is key- make sure that you get some training! Too many people want to jump right in there without getting the proper training on how to actually work with the program. If you try to tackle 5D BIM without any training, you’ll end up taking a lot longer to reap maximum benefit.

A lot of small companies also think: 5D BIM is only for large companies.
5D BIM can be used in all types of situations- from multi-billion dollar projects, yes, but for a single storey house as well. 5D BIM is totally flexible in this way. The key is, of course, that others on the project (specifically the designers) will need to be working with BIM software, and producing BIM models. If you have a single storey house that you are costing up where the architect has done this, then there is no reason why the BIM process can’t be carried throughout the project into the 5D BIM phase.

Lastly, you may often hear this one: 5D BIM is just a phase.
Unfortunately for those that want to avoid it, this just isn’t true. The key concepts of BIM have been around for almost 50 years, and what we are seeing now is just the manifest of decades of technological advancement. BIM isn’t a software, it’s a process, and this process is here to stay.

If you’d like to know more about how to get started with 5D BIM, read our blog post on Understanding 5D BIM in 5 Minutes here. Alternately, to learn more about CostX® estimating software, contact our sales team here now.