To BIM or not to BIM. That is not the question…
… Or is it? It maybe still is for the people in our building industry in Croatia. For many years now, globally we know that this is not a dilemma, but simply a starter to a debate.
I akin the progress of BIM in Croatia to that of the hard-earned Croatian victory at the 2018 FIFA World Cup semi-finals – long, exhausting, with extensions and shootout, getting more shocking as the match was coming to its end. We took a leap forward but still have steps to continue.
This is similar to what working in Croatia is really like. You are trying hard against all odds to design using BIM. Bearing in mind that integrated planning workflows are not what most people around me here in Croatia think it is, it is not a single piece of software nor a magic wand that will do the trick and make everything right. Too many colleagues are still reluctant to admit that they must work together with whoever will help them reach the goal.
It’s been eight years now here since we entered the BIM & VDC world. With a certain reluctance and with baby steps towards full BIM implementation. Being in such a troubled and small market, it isn’t easy. Mostly during this journey there was a sense of solitude and misunderstanding. While we still have a way to go, there has also been growth which has meant we have found rare like-minded people that make it all worthwhile. International communities of like-minded professionals have become our guidance and support to overcome the daily workflow obstacles and have also shown us the great diversities within all professional disciplines.
Despite this, not much has changed. There has been a lot of TALK: “We have to start using BIM!”; “I’ve heard it’s the next big thing!”; “Big firms are using it for the large-scale projects. We are too small for this.”; “We don’t have time.”…and the worst of all: “How much does it cost?”.
What has changed, is that there has been an increase in the number of conferences and lectures, however these are mostly academic presentations, with not many users exchanging experiences. On the other side approaching the academic structures is totally a different issue – welcoming words and smiling faces embrace the idea, but there is not much will to invest time and efforts to teach the young generations. There are also authorities who are not willing to do anything, because the government does not have funds to do it and they have little motivation to work the extra hour.
But the toughest part are the people in industry including all sides. The “old ways” are still too dominant and prevailing. Collaboration on a level that is required for present-day projects is hard to get and it is not due to the technology. At the end of the day BIM is a means of transparency. At the current state of our industry, transparency is not always welcome. The lack of willingness to act transparently though results in increasing building cost on side errors being made. The one who will pick up this bill is the ordinary tax payer, which means all of us. Therefore, we see it as our social obligation, to drive these new ways of doing things, to make our industry better again.
While acknowledging that BIM is our method for a successful collaboration, it only works if we share our experience and work together! BILT Europe is one of the few conferences that has emerged where you ARE exchanging experiences with Users. It is a very productive platform for personal and professional growth providing you with the further education needed to overcome the obstacles we face in our daily professional life. The need for change is prevalent within the industry and our society.
Hopefully we’ll see you there!
Written by Tea Helman Jukić of Architectural studio Helman & Jukić