PIM Smart LTD
Private Limited Company
3 Black Stick Road, Killyhevlin Industrial Estate, Enniskillen, Co. Fermanagh, United Kingdom, BT74 4EB
PIM Smart was delighted to be part of an award winning regional team submission for the Build Newcastle Live competition in 2015 where our BIM Region NI [formerly NI BIM Hub] team took away the award for BEST USE OF BIM FOR DESIGN, DRAMA & EXCITEMENT. You can read all about it in our portfolio article!
The 3 letters in the acronym BIM are subject to much confusion and debate within the construction industry. Depending on the context in which it is used, BIM can potentially mean:
BIM-Boozled? Amidst all the technical jargon and acronyms involved in BIM, it is important to bear in mind that BIM is a value creating process involving implementation of more efficient working practices – better work, not more work!
The basic underlying principle is that on construction and infrastructure projects, we should have access to the information we need, when we need it – irrespective of what you label this as! BIM is a way of working so our advice so ignore the subjective acronym BIM and instead focus on the objective processes that a Building Information Modelling [or whatever you want to call it] process entails!
In the UK [and accepted generally in Europe] the objective BIM process is laid out in a suite of 8 interlinked documents, standards & protocols [often referred to as the ‘8 Pillars of BIM’] – known as UK BIM Level 2 – which are in turn built on a foundation standard for collaborative working.
BIM is the hot topic in the industry right now and is subject to a lot of misunderstanding and inflated [sometimes deceptive] claims – or BIM-Wash.
At PIM Smart we have realistic expectations about what we can actually deliver in-house and we don’t wish to put ourselves or our clients at risk by inflating our capabilities beyond same. At base level, we produce and manage all our information at PIM Smart in accordance with the principles of the BS & PAS 1192 standards and we work collaboratively with our clients/contractors and other partners in the industry to develop on this base, as required, to develop BIM Level 2 compliant workflows on projects we support.
As with BIM-Wash, there are lots of descriptive labels knocking around in the industry such as ‘BIM Ready’, ‘BIM Compliant’ and ‘BIM Specialists’ however what does this actually mean in practice? In reality, as mentioned above, there are lots of different things the acronym BIM can actually mean and there are 4 distinct levels of BIM maturity against which ‘Readiness’ can refer to:
Alongside the UK BIM Level 2 standards, there are also a number of BIM enablers available which help to understand and implement BIM into working practices:
The BIM Delivery cube is an innovative communication matrix that links Work Stages, Stakeholders and Delivery Components together to offer BIM guidance and understanding to project stakeholders throughout the various stages of a project.
The CPIx Protocol is a suite of assessment forms along with a template BIM Execution Plan. The assessment forms are an invaluable basis for assessing BIM capabilities across the supply-chain when forming a team to tender for the supply of Building Information Modelling. The BIM Execution Plan describes how the chosen team intends to deliver Building Information Modelling as part of the tender documentation to the client.
The Construction Industry Council have published a number of useful guides and reports to help assist implementation of BIM within the industry including:
PIM Smart started its journey as a project to implement BIM for a subcontractor, eventually evolving into its own architectural technology and information modelling practice.
At first glance, implementing BIM can seem like a daunting and overwhelming challenge. However, through internal focus, BIM becomes much more valuable to your business when approached as a standard way of working, not a one-off solution to a particular project.
Our history section outlines some landmark moments in our BIM implementation progression and our blog contains some advice and guidance regarding BIM implementation we have learned and picked up during our journey.
Whilst a standard workflow approach for BIM has been realised in the UK BIM Level 2 suite of standards, how the standards are actually applied is highly malleable to particular project objectives, needs, requirements & procurement routes. At PIM Smart we utilise BS 1192 and PAS 1192 processes on all our works, however we are sometimes required to adopt a Practical Innovation approach when considering to what extent we implement the full Level 2 workflow on particular projects.
BIM Level 2 is essential to public sector works and large complicated projects however for smaller projects, a full BIM Level 2 approach may not always be practical or feasible across the whole project team. On such projects, whilst utilising the same underlying processes, we tailor our approach on each project we undertake to offer a flexible solution which still promotes and maximises the benefits of BIM Level 2 whilst also being practical, scalable and approachable to the wider project team and needs.
We maintain a pre-prepared a BIM Assessment for PIM Smart based on the CPIx Protocol which can be provided on request for consideration of how our services can assist you and your project requirements.
Eóin has completed the BRE Level 2 training for Stage 1 [BIM Fundamentals] and Stage 2 [Project/Task Information Manager] and is hoping to complete Stage 3 [Project Delivery Manager] in the near future.
He is also currently working towards membership of the BRE BIM Level 2 Certified Practitioner Scheme.
We are committed to promoting change within the construction industry towards a culture which enables more open and collaborative workflows. We have experienced some of the benefits of BIM first hand however the full potential of BIM is only realised when all project stakeholders – clients, designers, contractors & end-users – are fully engaged in the process from start to finish.
At PIM Smart, we like to share our experiences in the hope it will help inspire others to implement and use BIM so that we in turn can work more effectively and collaboratively with and within the industry. Having first established itself as a design service to underpin Roofscape’s sub-contractor roofing and cladding services and now established as an architectural technology practice, we have navigated our own unique journey on the way to implementing BIM processes.
Over the years we have presented at a number of academic institutions and BIM events and you can check out some of our content in our blog.
Alongside the development of BIM and IT generally within construction – and indeed other industries – so does the increase in information security risk. At PIM Smart we have established a number of measures to ensure the security and integrity of the information we author and store for the projects we support.
All online access to PIM Smart held information [including this website!] is secured using SSL encryption ensuring secure and private transmission of information between us and our clients.
All local copies of PIM Smart held information are stored on encrypted hard-drives on password protected PCs ensuring it cannot be accessed by unauthorised parties in event of theft.
We utilise a 3-2-1 Back-Up Strategy at PIM Smart to ensure we have a number of measures in place to provide data redundancy and back-up of project information in the event of corruption or system failure.
Each storage system we utilise also has history and version control capabilities allowing us to roll-back files to a previous point in time and allows for auditing of information throughout the project life-span.
PAS 1192-5:2015 is the Publically Accessible Standard regarding security of Building Information Modelling [BIM] data.
Our work PCs & mobile devices are protected with business level security software and all our internally authored information is accessed, managed, stored and backed-up [as outlined above] in line with PAS 1192-5 principles.
For larger, and data sensitive, project Common Data Environments hosting information across multi-discipline personnel, we recommend the use of specialist third party information hosting service providers as required.