- The National Institute of Building Sciences is targeting construction's stubborn productivity problem with an initiative to bring more digitization into the building process.
- The U.S. National Building Information Management Program aims to create a BIM standard throughout the entire life cycle of designing, constructing and operating in the built environment, NIBS said in a release.
- Led by industry vet Johnny Fortune, who joined NIBS as director of the national BIM program in June, the program recently held a second executive roundtable to present its launch and implementation plan, including a budget and steps to make the building process more efficient, less expensive and safer over the next five years.
Unlike other sectors such as manufacturing, the construction industry hasn't realized significant productivity gains through the implementation of technology. Indeed, construction has averaged just 1% productivity growth in the past 20 years, according to the NIBS release.
The BIM process virtually builds a structure in a digital environment first, putting each steel beam, floor tile and window in place to work through every aspect of construction before completing it in the real world.
While the U.S. has been a global leader in the development and implementation of BIM applications, the transition to full adoption by the industry has been slow. The NIBS BIM Program's goal is to accelerate that process.
“The U.S. National BIM Program will be successful through collaboration between public and private sectors and across the diversity of project stakeholders, namely owners, designers, constructors, suppliers, vendors and other involved parties,” said Stephen T. Ayers, interim CEO of NIBS, in the release.
NIBS began the planning process for the U.S. National BIM Program last year, with the aim to ultimately achieve a new level of industrial efficiency through digitalization. The program is the result of work from NIBS' BIM Council, which focuses on the requirements of U.S. building owners to document best practices and provide guidance on the adoption of digital technology to increase productivity and performance.
The non-profit, non-governmental organization said the BIM program will help the industry by accelerating the effectiveness of the supply chain, providing predictable processes, improving project outcomes, driving efficiency and fostering innovation, according to NIBS.