BIMBeing: The Journey #9
#9 – Learning to climb…
Photo by Riccardo Bresciana from Pexels
Building a career is by no means a simple task, especially when the path you need to take isn’t clear. Nowhere is this more relevant in the industry than with BIM. BIM is still considered to be one of the relatively ‘new’ breeds of job roles (in spite of the fact it’s been around for years) and on the back of that comes a continued misunderstanding of the job requirements and responsibilities.
What are the BIM ‘roles’? How do we define them? What knowledge does a BIM person need? What tasks will they do? What will they deliver? What experience should they have? How do they go from the bottom of the BIM ladder to the top? You’ll find innumerable opinions on this topic but what you will not find is a clear, consistent standard to define it. Enter dbe.careers.
There’s a team of industry experts working right now to resolve this very issue. The first part of the BIM Career Ladder has already been released on this very website and development continues to finalise the process. The focus points are this:
- Define the BIM roles
- Define the BIM tasks/requirements
- Assess the individual
- Provide a score card (where am I now)
- Provide a career action plan (how do I progress)
The purpose is not only to better define the roles but to have a method of assessing the capability individuals. This not only benefits a recruitment process but will enable companies and individuals to properly plan a career path, understanding in a clear and concise format the strengths they currently have and the areas they need to work on in order to progress. It’s important that individuals are placed in the correct roles and that targeted training and support can be provided in order for that person to fulfil their potential and start climbing that ladder. It also supports management, assisting in the building of teams made up of individuals with complimentary skills that are able to successfully deliver projects.
The reality is that without any form of standard we’re in a bit of a mess. There are individuals that are plodding in their current position simply not knowing how to progress to the next level and there are those at the other end of the scale that are sprinting up the ladder, missing several rungs along the way. Whilst the former issue is a concern the latter is actually really dangerous, and we’ve all seen the result; those that have cimbed far too quickly, skipping too many stages and getting to positions they are simply not prepared to hold. We end up with this awful success rate where some of the sprinters may make it to the top and miraculously manage to stay there, others will spectacularly fall. With guidance in place we can make that success rate 100% and ensure that those reaching the top of the ladder are fully prepared to be there.
It sounds simple (at which point the team working on it would kill me), but it’s really not. Standardising anything has it’s challenges, particularly when there are so many existing opinions on what everything should look like. Many companies and individuals have been working on similar assessment tools over the past few years but everything has been very ‘closed door’, all cards have been kept close to the chest and as a result they have not brought us closer to an industry wide consensus. To successfully create this as a standard our only option is to practice what we preach; we need to collaborate.
The team behind dbe.careers have therefore opened the door, put the cards on the table and said “here it is”. They’ve set out the proposed format and content and now it’s over to us, all of us, the digital wizards of BIM, to make it work. We need to test, review and comment in order to make this truly work for everyone. The skeleton is all there, we just need to strengthen the muscle.
So, as I usually say at this point, it’s time for you to get involved! Visit the BIM Career Ladder section of dbe.careers, read the introductory notes, download the sample files and score yourself. Review the information and, if you’re feeling collaborative, return some comments! This only works when the developers receive feedback from industry; it is not a solitary study, it has to be driven by us.