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Industry debate puts opportunities of collaboration in implementing BIM in the spotlight

Experts from across the whole building lifecycle involved with the successful implementation of BIM took part in a key session at the CIBSE Conference and Exhibition which examined the theme of collaboration from different viewpoints.

CIBSE welcomed both the Presidents of the RIBA and B&ES to the stage for a session that focused on ‘Delivering future construction through collaboration and BIM’.

Andy Sneyd, Head of Design Crown House Technologies and President of the B&ES chaired the session. His opening remarks contrasted the construction sector with other sectors, such as the aerospace industry, in their ability to date to harness the power of technology. Setting the scene, he encouraged delegates to consider how the construction industry will change as we embrace cloud computing and modern data exchange practices. 

Collaboration has been essential in every project my practice has worked on

Stephen Hodder, RIBA President

Stephen Hodder, the first President of the RIBA to speak at a CIBSE Conference, spoke further on the importance of collaboration in construction.

Stating "Collaboration has been essential in every project my practice has worked on,” Stephen Hodder opened his presentation with the benefits that it can bring.

Referencing Sir Michael Latham's report, Building the Team, he emphasised the importance of building teams and keeping them together to deliver effective teamwork and collaboration has been a key theme for over twenty years ago. 

Effective collaboration improves delivery, cost and timeliness. Describing the ‘4 C’s’ of collaboration as culture, contracts, clients and computing, Stephen Hodder also commented that design quality should not be diminished [as a result].

Completing the presentations, Paul Cooper, Director of Excellence at Cofely looked at the potential FM savings that can be enabled through this way of working. He stressed, through sharing of data, greater opportunities for a first time fix, analysing common faults and cost efficiencies being achieved. He warned however that while creating BIM data models through design and construction phases was proven, sustaining BIM through operate, maintain and enhancement phases must be considered too.

All of the speakers agreed that the role of manufacturers in this process demanded early engagement. Paddy Conaghan FCIBSE, Consultant, Hoare Lea commented that a core part of the CIBSE BIM Task Group was comprised of manufacturers. He added that CIBSE had been forward thinking in developing its BIM Product Data Templates which manufacturers had embraced.

This was a lively session on BIM and one which demonstrated collaboration in action.

>CIBSE Building Performance Conference & Exhibition