SCAPE AND THE MISSING LINK IN LEVEL 2 BIM COMPLIANCE
The news this week that all delivery partners must be Level 2 BIM compliant to tender for Scape’s revamped national construction framework should come as music to the ears of BIM evangelists.
In this week’s press release, Mark Robinson, Scape Group chief executive, said: “The construction industry has a clear mandate from the Prime Minister to build back ‘better’.
I wish we could remove ‘back’ from that quote.
Despite the promises of ‘better’ outcomes since BIM was ‘mandated’ by GOV.UK 4 years ago, too many projects have failed to prove the benefit because the supply chain has not ‘had’ to deliver or has found ways to get out of jail. We know how to do it but we still give the ‘BIM idle’ the opportunity not to because there is no penalty for non compliance.
Over the years there have been numerous articles from the great and the good as to why this. I side with those who want clients to take responsibility and I go further, unless there is the genuine legal threat that you will not get paid if you don’t comply, short cuts will be found.
Covid has given us a unique opportunity to ‘reset’ the BIM clock. This procurement hiatus has given GOV.UK time to take breath, see what has gone wrong and now insist on Level 2 BIM compliance. The eternal optimist in me is excited to hear Scape’s mandate.
But let’s not kid ourselves, most of the supply chain still can’t spell BIM, let alone prove Level 2 compliance. What is Level 2 compliance? BSI kitemark? BRE course? How will it align with iso19650 which is moving away from the ‘levels’ of BIM.
A compliant project requires a compliant supply chain. A connected chain, not just some of the links. This chain has to include the client – a client that is committed to better outcomes and is prepared to take on the fake BIM suppliers.
But will Scape do more than just check and actually ‘force’ compliance? It will be a challenge but, as the procurer, they couldn’t be in a better position. Painful financial penalties will quickly shift the focus from ticking the PQQ BIM box to ‘how do we prove how good we are?’. Or will it become another ‘tickbox’ exercise to get onto the project to then not deliver what is needed?
As I said earlier, we know how to do BIM well. With a new ‘do or die’ imperative, we empower the BIM positive suppliers. No longer do they have to accommodate the ‘dim BIM’, now they can help them on the journey to BIM excellence, help the UK construction industry build better and set a global standard.
There’s huge potential and not just on public sector projects. I look forward, I hope, to seeing how brave Mark and his team will be.