Thursday, May 16, 2013

Have you heard the one about the ‘BIM Analyst’?

Bet you never knew such a role even existed.
I for one did not, until I was cheerfully invited through an email today to apply for one of ‘them roles’, a ‘senior’ flavoured one even, from presumable a number of different graded-ones. * (see ad here)

You must not take my level of un-awareness as a measure of what BIM roles are to be treated as feasible and practical and what ones as merely a fad.
Ever since I first got hopelessly entangled in trying to define the difference between the various terms of ‘BIM managers ‘that manage data only and ‘BIM managers’ that manage people that manage BIM data, I’ve been opting for a much simple way of looking at classifying people working within the BIM field, onto those that know what they are doing and those that do not.

When I first read about this role, I thought it was a merely a retort of the architects as a group to the IT industry on the whole for them steeling the precious term ‘architect’.

Then, I thought, it made sense. Good BIM practitioners do analyse data, some even specialise in the analyses of the data embodied within highly intelligent digital representations of buildings.

Finally, after many re-reads, I settled to treat the job-ad as a good-old HR creative writing.

The decider was the list of ‘requirements’ this SENIOR BIM analyst was supposed to bring to the table:

1/ the person had to have a degree in BA Architecture, Civil Engineering or equivalent – fair enough, a good startnot much to complain there;

2/ s/he needed to prove to have had a minimum of 3 year’s practical experience working in a BIM role across multiple sectors – starting to get suspicious; 3 years post grad, for a senior role, in BIM? Enough to get to understand how the industry operates AND learn BIM?

3/ s/he must be experienced in using ArchiCAD, Bentley, Microstation, Revit, Tekla and Solibri on live projects

A minimum 1-2 years experience in all of the above applications
...  a place to stop and take a deep breath. ....

From the medley above, I could distil at least 4 products that would each require a number of years of serious practice for anyone to say they were competent in it...
but... it goes on, with quantities and audits and IFC and COBie...

You can say I’m being overly pedantic, am splitting hairs, slowing progress of BIM uptake or whatever...  
After all, the ad says ‘minimum’.
And  this is the critical one: ‘minimum’ IS set too low – there is just too much needed to be learned to be a good BIM-mer  to be able to achieve this, 3 years out of school.

Surely, it can’t be in the industry’s interest to play at such low and terribly incompetent levels as this job-ad indicated.
BIM is a field that require maturity and experience from its participants. 
Look at law. Look at medicine.

(not sure of picture’s origin, sourced through FB)


  1. Ho, ho, ho. The candidate shall have been practicing BIM since before it was called BIM, and have used every major software tool in a wide variety of contexts. In other words, shall be more interested in building a BIM portfolio than in building anything else.

  2. Good content thanks for sharing with me BIM Implementation