NEWS: Survey highlights opportunities for manufacturers in construction sector

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Excitech survey shows architects are increasingly demanding data-rich models as opposed to simple geometry

There are significant opportunities for manufacturers to increase the specification and inclusion of their products if they can deliver information in the form that architects and contractors are increasingly demanding; data-rich models as opposed to simple geometry.

This was one of the key findings in the new ‘Building Momentum’ survey, a provider of technology solutions and services for the construction sector.

The survey, which focused on BIM for efficiency, collaboration, and growth for manufacturers in the sector, found that 75% of architects are now regularly or occasionally collaborating and sharing models on BIM Level 2 projects. This suggests that manufacturers should be closely evaluating their own familiarity with and preparedness for BIM based projects.

Respondents were drawn from senior roles in architect, contractor and construction companies including CAD and Design Managers, Structural Engineers, BIM Managers and Senior Partners in architectural practices.

The survey shows that manufacturers have some way to go to harness the competitive advantage that the provision of BIM models, and inclusion in BIM libraries, can offer. 75% of architects actively select and specify manufacturers’ BIM content that is easily accessible, over content that isn’t; half of the contractors covered by the survey feel that their supply chain lacks BIM knowledge; and yet 85% of manufacturers believe that when they do supply content in the form of a BIM model, their product will make it to the contractor procurement stage.

Graham Mansfield, Business Manager for Manufacturing at Excitech, said “A number of the respondents highlighted the mature stage of acceptance that BIM has reached across the construction sector and specifically among architects and contractors. Since these are the organisations that specify and order a manufacturer’s products, there are some useful insights that manufacturers might want to take note of.

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The key observation from this survey is that manufacturers that aren’t already being smart with content need to start doing so. This could help them achieve ‘trusted advisor’ status with their customers. Manufacturers can also extend the lifetime business potential of products that are accompanied by BIM models at handover to Facilities Management, and also embed themselves in early stage collaboration on their projects.”

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