There are many models showing the BIM process, but to date we haven’t seen one which states clearly how the supporting cast of organisations, which include; piling contractors, ecologists, geophysicists (who undertake scans for utilities, sub-surface objects etc), as well as ground engineering consultants, fit into the process.
Because we are providing data to support the design and validate that any potential remedial measures have been correctly implemented, we sit outside most models. How the data we provide is shared and communicated is quite often invisible to us.
The involvement of ground engineers in BIM projects is far from standardised, even amongst some of the bigger contractors. For the smaller projects that make up 80% of our client projects, it is very patchy.
Failure to include consultants and contractors who are not directly part of the design process will not deliver true project collaboration and it will be more difficult to realise the cost benefits.