Are You BIM Ready for the Government’s April 2016 Mandate?

Hertfordshire University: Photo Credit: Willmore Iles Architects
Hertfordshire University
Photo Credit: Willmore Iles Architects

Building Information Modelling (BIM) is at the front and centre of the latest digital technology in today’s built environment. Early adopters within the industry and Government have successfully promoted this pioneering building technology. There is now almost a universal recognition of BIM within the construction industry, as well as widespread private sector investment in the implementation of BIM.

So as the Government’s April 2016 BIM Mandate approaches, why is BIM so crucial to transforming the industry?

Ian Quinton Managing, Director of RCM Building Boards and Facades shares his views on the positive impact that BIM will have on today’s construction industry:

“As the digital age is evolving, we are constantly adapting technology in order to enhance all aspects of the modern world – the construction industry is no exception but it is only recently that the true impact is starting to be realised. BIM has changed the dynamic of the construction business, by enhancing efficiencies and delivering well-coordinated and well-designed projects.

The use of BIM is crucial for Government projects, as there is a prerequisite for time efficient construction, as well as a vital responsibility to reduce our carbon outline through the application of low energy buildings – resulting in lower costs for the end user.

Aston University
Aston University

There has been scepticism, however, from some parts of the industry over the Government’s BIM strategy with some companies claiming that there is a crucial lack of training in this area and that it is too costly and time consuming to invest in, particularly for SME’s.

Despite these claims the overall acceptance that BIM has gained still seems particularly prominent. From my experience, the general consensus from our industry implies that the growing integration of BIM will have a positive effect with only a small percentage of construction companies stating that they will not be using the technology. More money is now being invested in BIM, with large jobs kicking off this year applying the use of BIM in more sophisticated ways than ever before.

In terms of procurement, BIM is a powerful tool that allows construction companies to quantify the requirements of their projects. This enables control of spending and time management, resulting in the reduction of wastage in these areas. It is essential that BIM is used in the early design stages of a project to ensure that there is capacity to not only clearly identify the elements of the project but through the use of BIM, companies are able to anticipate when they need to procure any given material or element. It is extremely difficult to transport the appropriate knowledge across all construction partners at the same time without the use of BIM, this can lead to the teams procuring the wrong materials at the wrong time, in different volumes.

RCM have invested in research to produce technical specification data for developing BIM models for all of our building board ranges and facade solutions. Most importantly we have subscribed to collaborative BIM platforms such as NBS BIM, NBS Plus as well as the RIBA Product Library to ensure RCM’s BIM product models and technical information are readily available to all construction professionals. These industry-leading linked digital platforms provide an online resource enabling designers and specifiers to research and select construction products and service information for all types of building design projects.

I believe that only by embracing the benefits of this technology can we truly compete in the future market place. These, without doubt, are exciting times for all involved in construction and the Government’s April 2016 Mandate has further focused our industry’s attention. As with the building solutions we all produce – we have to innovative to collectively take our industry forward into the next decade and beyond. “

Informative CPD Events

For those interested in finding out more, RCM provide informative CPD sessions including:   a guide to materials, applications and specification considerations for building boards, internal and external linings and rainscreen facades, covering:

  • What a specifier needs to consider
  • Board materials and benefits
  • Board applications
  • Work on site

For more details call 0845 1303725 or visit


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