Nigel Rees, Product Director Cloud Services at ALLPLAN
As the drive towards increasing digitalization within the construction industry gathers pace, construction professionals are finding themselves in the role of information managers. Digital working methods such as Building Information Modeling (BIM) and emerging technologies such as automation, artificial intelligence, and big data all rely on high-quality, well-structured project information to be effective. Yet even before the shift to digital design and construction, information has been a critical success factor in projects – incomplete design data, ineffective change management processes, and problematic information exchange among teams have often led to issues such as delays, overspends, and rework.
The need for effective data management is therefore not a result of digitalization, but rather an essential component of delivering quality projects on time and to budget, irrespective of the working method used. Using digital approaches simply magnifies the detrimental effects of poorly managed data. However, the disruption of the architecture, engineering, construction, and operation (AECO) industry through digitalization is no longer avoidable – working in 3D and using BIM methodologies has become increasingly expected by clients worldwide.
The use of BIM on public-sector projects is mandatory in many countries, with this trend set to continue. Private-sector clients are also looking to leverage the efficiencies of BIM, as well as take advantage of digital facilities management technologies for their assets during operation. Even without the need to fulfill client requirements, construction professionals face a range of pressures – such as the scarcity of skilled staff – that make finding efficient working practices imperative. Those who adapt and implement new ways of working are well placed to benefit from further industry disruption in the future.
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