BIM competency low in GCC says study
Dubai, December 21, 2010
The penetration of Building Information Modeling (BIM) in the GCC region is moderate (around 25 per cent), but the level of competency is underdeveloped compared to the West, according to a study.
The survey, conducted by buildingSmart ME, provides unique insight into the current state of BIM usage, while providing valuable indicators of how the industry can prepare for and facilitate increased BIM activity.
Face to face interviews conducted as part of the survey indicated that most firms engaged with BIM were in an ‘early adoption’ phase and were typically using BIM in its most basic capacity – as a tool for visualisation, coordination, drawing extraction and in a few cases, for construction planning.
“The region’s construction industry is at a decisive crossroad, and the purpose of the survey is to provide perspective on how companies which are implementing BIM within their organisations, and those that are looking to implement BIM, can gain tangible business benefits as a result,” said Tahir Sharif, president, buildingSMART ME.
“buildingSmart ME as an organization is dedicated to assist in the planning and development of BIM programmes and infrastructure across the region,” added Tahir.
The survey included respondents from key construction industry sectors operating in the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Oman, Bahrain, Kuwait and Jordan. The findings are reflective of the opinions of industry professionals with prior exposure to and/or experience with BIM.
The recognition of the value of BIM is strong, with respondents identifying ‘reduction in design errors’ (66 per cent), ‘improved quality control’ (64 per cent) and ‘improved productivity’ (64 per cent) as the primary benefits.
The survey uncovered concerns that the (lack of) availability of skilled staff and training may hinder the adoption of BIM in the future. Such concerns are supported by the findings on current capabilities and skills level. Of the respondents who had received BIM training, 46 per cent indicated that they were self-taught. Those that were self- taught were less likely to be regular BIM users than that those with formal training (64 per cent compared to 84 per cent respectively).
Overall the findings represent a market that is optimistic and aware, but inexperienced in Building Information Modelling. Real benefits are recognised, but not necessarily seen as achievable (ROI was identified as one of the least recognised benefits). Concerns regarding the need for training and skilled staff are well-founded and there is a clear call to industry bodies and decision-makers to bridge the divide and lead the industry forward, the survey said.
Governments, owners and developers are in a position to benefit most significantly from Building Information Modelling, and at the same time accelerate the penetration into the market through the mandating of BIM in development approvals, certification processes, as well as in prequalification and tender documents, it said. – TradeArabia News Service