What is BIM coordination and why it is important for project development

What is BIM coordination and why it is important

BIM coordination features, advantages and tools: find out how the revolutionising BIM technology improves coordination processes

Are you working with other professionals on the same project and looking for a all-in-one BIM coordination software (possibly online) to share, view and edit files?

In this blog post we’ll be analyzing BIM coordination in detail and how important it is applying this working methodology to improve coordination within your team.

Specifically, we will be exploring a free and very intuitive BIM coordination tool to enhance project efficiency, connect multidisciplinary teams and optimise workflows.

usBIM, an integrated BIM coordination tool

BIM coordination tools

What does BIM coordination mean?

BIM coordination implies a coordination process between the various subjects involved in a BIM project, with the objective of optimizing a constrution or infrastructure work management (from design phase up to dismantling).

In particular, one of the main objectives of BIM coordination is to improve the whole construction supply chain and to reduce its costs through technologies and tools that facilitate coordination between the various operators.

A BIM coordination process is mostly focused on a BIM model.

usBIM, an integrated BIM coordination tool

BIM coordination

Generally, project teams work on multidisciplinary models involving different discipline (architectural, structural, technical installations, etc.) models.

In this way it becomes easier to detect possible interferences and to share choices in order to avoid problems and unexpected events during a project development.

It is therefore essential that all BIM coordination processes are supported by digital tools capable of managing BIM models and guaranteeing the optimisation of information and workflows.

The co-ordination process: traditional method vs BIM

It is often debated that a traditional design method is inefficient from a collaborative point of view.

As a matter of fact, if communication takes place by email or telephone, it is simply impossible to repeatedly exchange so much information within what is considered an acceptable time frame causing delays in project delivery.

In addition, with traditional methods you can’t guarantee traceability of communications and it doesn’t become easy to store useful information throughout the life cycle of a project.  Information would be too complex to be represented in 2D.

On the contrary, a great revolution is taking place through the storage and representation of information in 3D BIM models. BIM is a collaborative design method where the different actors involved in the implementation of a project can enrich the information model, insert, extract, update or modify information.

BIM integrates the various  architectural, structural and MEP engineering disciplines enabling the design process to be streamlined, also allowing conflicts to be identified and resolved prior to construction.

The benefits of BIM coordination

Working with BIM coordination tools allows you to manage BIM models more efficiently and ensures optimisation of information and workflows.

A project team’s main skills most certainly required are:

  • ability to deal with project issues
  • ability to work in a team
  • 3D model management
  • knowledge of BIM authoring applications.

However, collaborative work brings many advantages as well, such as:

  • streamlining the construction process by sharing a single 3D BIM model that allows various team members to work simultaneously
  • clarity and shared choices between architects, engineers, contractors and builders to solve problems in advance and make the design process more precise and accurate
  • better management of identified interferences with Clash Detection software
  • better quality of design choices thanks to coordination reports that help the tea to make further changes to the project
  • increased productivity by reducing construction costs and time
  • costs reduction also during the asset maintenance.

What does a BIM coordinator do

In order to correctly and efficiently manage all the information and data involved in a BIM process, it is necessary to involve professionals with specific skills and to provide an organisational structure where each subject’s roles and responsibilities in the process are clearly defined.

This implies the need for new professional figures, such as the BIM Coordinator.

A BIM Coordinator coordinates information flows. In cases of highly complex and multidisciplinary projects, more than one BIM Coordinator can be involved.

BIM coordination - BIM coordinator software

BIM coordinator

In summary, a BIM coordinator roles and responsibilities are:

  • digitising the order management process
  • supporting or drafting information specifications
  • supporting or drafting information management plans and/or information management offers
  • assigning information requirements to stakeholders
  • supporting the BIM manager’s activities
  • selecting the necessary staff and tools and take care of interpersonal relations
  • managing interferences and conflicts
  • outlining and analysing control rules
  • supporting the BIM manager in defining contractual aspects.

The tools for BIM coordination

Collaborative working is an increasingly popular way of working in the AEC sector and, consequently, the right tools must be used to optimise collaboration and information sharing.

Let’s take a look at what is meant by BIM coordination software and what are its main features.

A BIM coordination software is basically the tool (or set of tools) needed to organize collaborative work.

The combination of multiple skills and competences requires an interactive organisation, managed by appropriate technological infrastructures.

Working in a team on a single project generally requires:

  • constant exchange of files
  • direct communication between professionals
  • automatic file versioning
  • data archiving
  • working files real time availability
  • various software compatibility
  • coordination between different models
  • interferences check between models (e.g.: installation systems, structural, architectural models)
  • validation of project choices
  • definition of a general coordination flow.

A BIM coordination software allows you to manage of all the above aspects, keeping shared models always synchronised and obtaining positive results with regards to both time and resources.

Is there an all-in-one software to manage all these functionalities? Keep reading this article to know more about it.

usBIM, a fundamental tool for BIM coordination

If you are looking for a software that supports you in all the phases of a BIM process, I recommend you using usBIM, the first integrated system to collaborate in real time with your colleagues, share and manage construction and infrastructure projects and work online with any device and anywhere.

First of all, I’ll show you how to use usBIM for free and access this service:

  • if you already have an ACCA account
    • access the usBIM webpage
    • login by entering your credentials (email used upon registration and password)
    • click on Login
  • if you don’t have an ACCA account yet

Remember that usBIM is an online platform and therefore you do not need to install any application on your device and you can simply access this service from your PC, tablet or smartphone.

image showing the interface of usBIM.browser, one of the usBIM.10 applications

 

You are now ready to experience the full functionality of usBIM that comes with 10 free integrated applications which allow you to:

  • view and manage the most commonly used file formats in the construction industry in an advanced way
    • .IFC
    • .BCF
    • Revit (.RVT and .RFA)
    • point clouds (.LAS, .LAZ, .E57, .PLY, .PTS, .XYZ, etc.)
    • GIS (.geoJson)
    • CAD files (.DWG and .DXF)
    • etc.
  • federate models of any format and size
  • archive and share your project files regardless of data format
  • work on your projects from anywhere and with any device
  • access your data from any device
  • resolve and manage model conflict issues
  • better coordinate work and solve problems quickly with online video calls and desktop sharing
  • generate cost estimates anywhere and from any device, from your browser, without needing to install different applications and in a collaborative way
  • manage issues on your model and data directly in cloud with traceable processes that ensure top quality results
  • create, edit and manage your text documents, spreadsheets, etc. in real-time and collaboratively
  • collaborate in real-time with design, construction and maintenance teams through online chat and meeting platforms
  • create an online construction information system by integrating the 3D digital model with data and documents where it is easy to search, visualise and analyse any stored information
  • place your 3D BIM models in a GIS environment
  • edit and manage files created with any BIM authoring software
  • navigate the 3D model.

With an all-in-one online solution, manage all BIM coordination needs and operations relating to any BIM process.

 

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