Balfour Beatty is ramping up its commitment to implement business information modelling (BIM) in its operations, according to the company's design director.

Peter Treblicock told Construction News that the firm has a vision of rolling out BIM on a large number of its future projects and also advocated that Balfour's supply chain embraces the technology. Mr Treblicock explained to the news provider that there are plans in place to train every employee across the various areas of the group to ensure that they fully understand how using BIM would benefit the company.

However, the design director said that it must not stop there and suppliers should fully embrace BIM, especially at a time when Balfour is looking to reduce its supply chain from 15,000 to 10,000 names in the coming years. The company has already begun implementing BIM to around 60 live projects, which have values ranging from £4 million to £400 million. These include the likes of Heathrow Terminal 2B, the Forth Bridge in Scotland and the M25 maintenance programme.

Mr Treblicock told the source: "Some of them [suppliers] might not be BIM literate and they're not excluded from being part of our supply chain. 

"But we say to them, in 12 months' time we will review everybody’s progress, and if all things are equal and you have one supplier who is literate and two who are not, we will keep the one that’s BIM literate.”

BIM is becoming an increasingly popular tool within the construction industry as it gives contractors and builders crucial information about how the structure is put together. Users can access 3D visualisations to provide insight for creating and managing the building work and also note ways in which the construction process can be completed more efficiently with a reduced impact on the environment.

It can also help contractors see any potential problems that could occur before a single brick has been laid, saving valuable man hours as well as reducing costs in the process.

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