Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Should quantity surveyors fear BIM?

Should quantity surveyors fear BIM?

They definitely do fear BIM but the questions is should they?

No, not at all!

I have been planning to write a post about this for quite a long time but always something else was poping up.

Until today:) I saw this as a discussion topic on LinkedIn.

As you know, I do not like reading long and boring stuff. I quickly skim the text and if it is really something to spend my time and energy I would read it carefully then.

And, the first comment on the discussion just stroke me!

Wow! If I was gonna write the blog post, it would be within the same lines with Gary Bowen's comment. (His English is better than me tough :))

Here comes his comment that I 100% agree:

"Quantity Surveyors "fearing BIM" is becoming an increasingly common statement to make, as the initial reaction to BIM is usually that the QS's job is threatened with automatic takeoff processes. But in practice, this is clearly not the case. A fundamental aspect which is rarely covered by those who bring up this, is, 'Where can the QS provide value for developers on BIM projects?'

Very few QS's provide value by quickly rattling off the automatically generated volume of concrete below grade for example. Whether it's a BIM or traditional project, the key deliverable of a QS does not change - therefore there is no need to fear BIM as no change in a process will replace that deliverable.

Even if the QS is provided with a full breakdown of quantities in the model, in practice, these are rarely in the format required for pricing. After formatting assemblies and schedules into standardized pricing formats like materformat or uniformat etc, only one stage has been achieved. I.e. Only the model has been measured and priced. This is not the required task a QS should focus on... A QS should provide value by pricing the 'project' and not the 'model' - i.e. what elements of the model are missing, how much risk should be applied, is the building an efficient shape, are life-cycle costing options a high importance on this project, is the cost plan amount expected to be the final construction cost etc etc. By reducing the time taken to compute the quantities, the QS can then focus on more billable hours by providing these services. Providing value for a facility will never be replaced by others automatically generating quantities.

Perhaps fearing the initial investment in upgrading computers & software to handle models may be a 'fear' for small-medium companies, but I assume your question refers to general implementation and processes. In short, people should embrace the new opportunities and look forward to overcoming some of the road-bumps on the way."

I hope you enjoyed it too!
Have a fabulous weekend!
Diyane Koseoglu


  1. Quantity surveyors should put investment in upgrading computers & software to handle models remove the fear for small companies .like these are doing such a marvelous services for costumers

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