I joined the thousands of built environment folk who travelled to London’s ExCEL for the three-day Ecobuild exhibition last week. As in previous years, it was a good opportunity to meet a few friends, gossip and get updated on key industry developments. I attended three sessions in the Better with BIM seminar room (one featured Ed Bartlett talking about BIM and FM from a KyKloud perspective; post) and also caught a few stand-based presentations, including ones at the RIBA Village and the Open BIM Network. Several of my former BIW colleagues were present on the latter, representing Conject, and I listened to UK MD Steve Cooper give a low-key Conject view on building information modelling.
Conject is clearly still developing its proposition for BIM, which is seen as integral to the next stage in the evolution of its Plan-Build-Operate application to reduce costs and carbon emissions. With other vendors – notably, but not only, 4Projects (post) – extending the boundaries of browser-based BIM viewing tools, Conject is looking beyond file-sharing, graphical documentation and COBie outputs, and stressing it’s about building information management.
Substantially more data is involved in BIM (“10-30 times as much”), and it needs to be more complete and fully interoperable if it is to help projects achieve the government target of Level 3 BIM adoption and support the operational phase of a built asset’s life-cycle, said Steve. Conject’s focus therefore appears to be on providing project control in real-time, offering an integrated view of time, cost, quality and carbon (nD) throughout the project. He stressed several times the need to manage workflows and to provide visibility of key management information, showing project dashboards with various graphs and information summaries for project leaders.
This was clearly a ‘helicopter view’ of where Conject is going with BIM. It is playing to its strengths in project cost control and project workflows, and is also pitching to client organisations who will need support for facilities management beyond handover (it is launching its SaaS-based FM platform in the UK towards the end of 2013; some Germany-based clients are already using it). I have been promised some further insights later this spring when the company plans to detail new services relating to BIM.