Improperly managed BIM projects can often feel like a house booby trapped by Kevin McCallister. You might recall the Home Alone burglars were faced with burning doorknobs, paint can pendulums, slippery stairs, and (the one that makes me cringe) a blowtorch to the head.
Sure, they deserved it, but you don’t.
You might find yourself in a project with a problem at every turn. In your case, rather than a blowtorch to the head, you face model crashes, seemingly lost content, or inconsistent drawings.
In this article, our goal is to help you lay out a plan to prevent the mishaps and manage your BIM content more effectively.
A team without clear company standards is like a traveler without a map (or GPS). No one knows the plan. Everyone is making their best guess. This leads to inconsistency in your projects, frustrated team members, and clunky collaboration.
We’ve found that how-to guides and requirements manuals are imperative for the success of the team. Additionally, support teams should surround the company standards to not only assist the project teams with general questions, but also to enforce the guidelines. A BIM Manager cannot do it alone.
When teams lack clear naming standards, they often face duplicate content, confusing project navigation, and inconsistent drawing information that can lead to major on-site issues.
Consider establishing clear naming standards for the following:
– Common Views
When content is difficult to find, team members waste a significant amount of time and feel frustrated trying to find what they need. Many teams do not utilize a content management system, which often results in content that is scattered across personal and network drives.
You could cut content-seeking down even more by utilizing a content management platform with robust search features.
For example, UNIFI can help users find content quickly by creating a saved search. This allows team members to quickly access a search that holds the specific filters needed to get to the precise piece of content that they want. That way, they don’t have to constantly remember exactly how to get to that content.
Ignoring factors that could slow down Revit leads to slower performance, frustrated users, and issues that become greater problems than if they were addressed right away.
To avoid this mishap, consider implementing a system such as UNIFI’s Project Analytics, which notifies you of issues important to the health of your projects before they become major setbacks.
One major problem you can encounter with BIM Content Management is sharing content without permission. For example, you could share content that you purchased that may then be reused without licensed permission. You could also share private project information, which could result in a lack of trust in your firm.
To increase security on projects, we recommend that you limit user permission by utilizing tools such as BIM 360, which offers granular permissions for viewing, downloading, and editing content and project files.
To increase security on content, we recommend using a content management platform such as UNIFI, which allows you to customize user access and protect libraries. For more guidance on sharing content, we recommend that you check out our article on sharing BIM content with other firms.
A lack of proper training either in the main applications your firm uses or in proper design methods can lead to a lack of transparency, protection, and efficiency for your team. When left unaddressed, this can lead to model crashes, missed deadlines, on-site issues, and even lawsuits.
It often feels like a sacrifice for firms to take the time to pause projects to train team members, however, experts have actually found that it expedites the timeline instead.
To prevent this from happening, we recommend that you have a clear onboarding guide that: (a) trains users on each software used and (b) covers important company standards (such as naming conventions).
It is easy to have a process, but if the process isn’t designed well, it can slow down work, reduce the quality of work, and ultimately frustrate the people it was made for. Quite often a one size fits all approach doesn’t fit at all.
Instead of a one size fits all approach, we recommend that you look specifically at your company’s BIM goals. You may also look to specific market sectors or practice disciplines to identify key resources that you would need to face your unique issues. You’ll also want to consider how flexible your workflows are with the ever-changing BIM industry.
Resolving each of these possible mishaps can boost the overall efficiency and performance of your team. Once you implement the strategies we covered in this article, you’ll find that your frustration over project setbacks will be replaced with the confidence of Kevin McCallister.
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