Payback in BIM (ROI)

Payback in BIM (ROI)Several studies to analyze the return on investment in projects that used methodologies BIM work, but we are all aware of how impossible it be to get an accurate rate of return and even less to quantify the exact term return on investment.

Stanford University Integrated Engineering Facility published a report in 2007 based on a study of 32 projects from the US, Europe and Asia, which stated: “The study has shown that when used in a BIM project, Up to 40% of unbudgeted changes could be eliminated, the accuracy of the cost estimate increased to less than 3% and the time needed to generate a cost estimate by 80% could be reduced. “

In 2010 Allen Consulting Group published the results of its study on the impacts of BIM on productivity. “The findings of the study reported that the accelerated and widespread adoption of BIM in the Australian economy was likely to increase GDP by 0.2 basis points by 2011.”

Since 2012, the UK Government has undertaken various cost analyzes in relation to the overall objective of a sustainable reduction in the cost of construction by 15-20% by 2016. In its report of July 2014, it published data Of various projects:


  •  New prison, Wrexham, North Wales, has a cost reduction goal of 26% but will end in 2017.
  • Property Services group of elementary schools involving new buildings, extensions and reforms for 22 projects, has a goal of cost reduction of 14% fixed and had already reported a reduction of 7%.
  • Horizonte Project, improvement of road network with a goal of cost reduction of 17.5% in 5 years. In 2013, the report says that they carry a percentage of 15.
  • Crossrail – The railway project is the first major infrastructure project in Europe to fully realize the BIM life cycle concept. The company expects a saving of 10-15%

The University of Colorado, a university project in Portland – Oregon, Sutter Health Care, UNITEC, New Zealand ‘s largest technology institute, which proceeded to manage its facilities. Information development is being used to accurately plan and manage facilities and operation of equipment and contractors reporting a 23% annual return on project investment. These are some of the many success stories reported from A continuous form.

The cases of failures have not been published, but I am aware that there are several. For example I know cases that have not been able to carry out an adequate project management in BIM and have carried out two projects (one in BIM due to contract requirements and another in CAD with which the asset was built). In this case, what happens is that the expense is doubled in an absurd way. In other cases we find jobs that arrive at the LOD300 and that they lack much development so that they can be considered execution projects.
Motive? Evidently there was a lack of mentality, knowledge, etc. And here doubts come back. Is the use of BIM methodologies profitable? What is your return? Well I assure you that it is profitable, how much ?, can not be quantified, but if we value the experience of all the projects we have developed in the last 10 years, I dare to say that at least in the worst of scenarios we can venture That a 20% profitability can be guaranteed.
In a good scenario, we have done a project in CAD with a team of great professionals (5) for 15 days, the same project was done independently by a BIM team (2 people) for 4 days. In times represents an improvement of 76% and achieved an improvement in the whole of the final product.
In short, we see that there are very few companies with a good level of BIM / VDC implementation in which most of the staff is trained to model a LOD400 with ease, companies that work with a suitable BIM / VDC resource center (that is Similar to blocks, boxes, etc. of Autocad), we know very few cases of equipment that have the capacity to develop scripts to automate certain routines or repetitive actions. We also do not know many cases where the work of Facility Management has been taken into account, ie, the future needs of asset management should be taken into account in the design phase.
It should also be noted that with the use of BIM / VDC methodologies, the Technical Directorates require us to model various variants and constant modifications, which implies a greater work load, this situation also happened when working in CAD, but the number of variants Were requested was much smaller. The analysis of several variants contributes a greater degree of quality to the project.
Another aspect that can not be quantified is the trust of the final customer. In the projects we have worked on we have found a direct collaboration and a very fast and smooth communication with the properties, which has generated bonds of trust.

The greatest value or profitability of BIM / VDC is not in the project or in the technical office that is important, but in the work, in cost of materials, hours of work, auxiliary resources (cranes, auxiliary machinery, .

In short, the well-applied BIM work methodology is very profitable and there is no fixed return, but will depend on multiple factors.