What you need to know about BIM VDC managers: activities, work tools, qualifications and responsibilities
What is a BIM VDC manager and what does he deal with? Which BIM Management systems do you use for your work?
In this article we’ll be taking a closer look at roles and responsibilities of one of the main figures deeply involved in the VDC (Virtual Design and Construction) process and BIM (Building Information Modeling) oriented workflows.
What is a VDC manager?
To manage all aspects and technologies of a BIM VDC process, an organisational structure in which roles and responsibilities are assigned to each professional is essential.
This kind of process also includes new professionals with specific technological knowledge and team coordination skills.
The VDC manager is a key role within the BIM process who manages and coordinates all professionals and supervises all VDC activities.
Allow me to highlight that VDC (Virtual Design and Construction) refers to a project management methodology, fundamentally based on a combination of new technologies (BIM), multidisciplinary project models, adequate work schemes and planning aspects combined with collaborative processes within the project operations team.
To get a full idea of all the actors involved in a BIM/VDC process, here’s a short list:
- BIM/VDC Manager (Virtual Design Construction)
- BIM Manager
- BIM Coordinator
- BIM Specialist
- CDE Manager
- BIM Lead
- Project Manager
- Design Team Leader
- Modeler II
- Modeler I.
What does a VDC manager do?
In summary, the VDC manager manages all aspects and figures involved in the VDC processes and guides the implementation and use of digital technology and tools for construction.
The main tasks and responsibilities of this role are:
- define the contractual aspects;
- lead the management of the BIM project and the VDC coordination;
- support work teams to ensure optimal delivery of digital projects using BIM technologies;
- ensure collaborative work within the team;
- define work strategies;
- implement and exploit digital technologies and other cutting-edge methodologies to ensure progress and continuous innovation in the delivery of digital projects;
- schedule coordination meetings between the Project Executive and the Project Manager when assigning any project to complete the project start-up checklist for BIM requirements;
- assist the project team in the selection of subcontractors in relation to BIM requirements;
- plan and lead project kick-off meetings with subcontractors and design support teams to implement the BIM execution plan (BEP);
- ensure that projects have properly defined BIM requirements;
- manage and coordinate BIM models;
- generate a coordination program based on digital models for an optimized collaboration between design teams, contractors, subcontractors and business partners;
What qualifications does a VDC manager need?
A VDC BIM manager qualifies with these main requirements:
- experience in planning and coordinating projects;
- strong organisational skills;
- ability to manage different projects;
- verbal and graphic communication skills;
- basic knowledge of BIM management software;
- ability to work independently;
- understanding of project documents;
- technical design knowledge;
- high marketing and communication skills;
- leadership and coaching to support junior BIM/VDC technicians and engineers.
In practice, the VDC BIM Manager manages all the orders and interfaces with the other management figures (BIM Manager, BIM Coordinator, etc.) to supervise and coordinate their work.
The tools of a VDC MANAGER
The VDC manager must have the preparation and tools that guarantee him or her to make decisions independently but it is not necessary that he/she knows how to use all the software and tools of BIM Authoring in a practical way.
On the contrary, it must have a high operational knowledge of management and coordination software to synchronize the entire work team in real time and to assign, authorize, record and control the activities of all group members.
The main tools of his work are:
- the BIM collaboration platform to make data organization and business process activities efficient and to create a Data Sharing Environment (CDE) in the cloud that allows professionals, companies, suppliers, maintainers and clients to work together;
- BIM Management systems to manage the digitization of constructions and infrastructures in a collaborative manner, view and manage IFC files, etc.