7 Tips for Adding Effectiveness to the Design Workflow

The process of designing and documenting buildings can be cumbersome and involved. Here are a few things to consider in running a more efficient company, especially for those using BIM.

Using Building Information Modeling (BIM) is helpful to the Architect and by extension to the other stakeholders for a variety of reasons. Credit where credit is due… much of what I am summarizing in this post was communicated by David Haynes at an Autodesk Training Seminar via Autodesk University. I found David’s presentation to be quite candid and informative. Here are a few highlights…

  1. If the Architect is listening to the client, he is able to develop processes that will allow and facilitate the client’s work being accomplished. BIM assists in automating that process.
  2. By developing a ‘Process Map’ of the way that the building will be designed and documented, one is able to determine ‘Pinch Points’ in the process, which are described as ways that the process is impeded and workflow is slowed… such as a single person who must approve a certain aspect of the process. The goal is to eliminate the ‘pinch points’.
  3. Using BIM, there is the possibility of creating many details that directly relate to the construction. Firm practice, though, tends toward wanting to reuse typical construction details. Taking advantage of the use of BIM means that the details used directly relate to the project. You must insure that the details that are added to your project add value to the work. Irrelevant details subtract value.
    The goal is to both start and end the process, to the degree possible, digitally. Much waste revolves around the use of paper.
  4. Localize the systems that are used in a design and design to the agreed upon budget for those systems.
  5. Examine the AIA document E202 for information on the use of BIM
  6. The BIM should be available to all stakeholders, especially the General Contractor.

I thought that the points made were helpful. For more information on running a more efficient design firm, you may also want to check out the Lean Architecture website.

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