Life is a packet of pringles

Lets be honest, we’re all a little lazy at times. Even the most productive and efficient of people can still have their lazy moments and just want to eat pringles on the couch and not have to lift a finger. So its no surprise that our society is always looking for the next best thing that makes life that little bit easier. From our cars that tell us where to go and reverse park for us to our tablets at home that seem to be able to control the whole house. We seem to strive towards creating that one technology that can control and do everything for us, so we don’t have to lift a finger at all. It’s not that we’re a lazy society as such it’s just that who can say no to making life easier so we can focus on the good times.

photo-6Well there’s a technology that has come close to achieving all this, well for the construction industry at least and it’s no surprise that it’s BIM. I know, I talk about it a lot but it’s hard to ignore so just hear me out. We have 1D, 2D, 3D and 4D BIM, but there’s always room for improvement and so now there’s 5D. You’re probably rolling your eyes thinking “of course BIM has so many factors and processes, this girl will spend the rest of her life talking about BIM” but I promise 5D is the last, for now at least. Today’s lecture was by Caitlin Hintz from Mitchell and Brandtman on “5D Quantity Surveying”.

So as I mentioned, there’s the 3D BIM, which presents project information dynamically, whereas the 4D adds the element of time. And now that we have 5D, well 5D is all about the cost. We know by now the significant role architects and engineers play in large scale and also standard projects, but we shouldn’t forget about the quantity surveyors. If it weren’t for them and the significant savings in time and money they provide to the overall project, then the project may not be achievable whatsoever.

screen-shot-2013-10-15-at-9-42-57-pm-e1381834568984Lets take a look at Brisbane, currently underway is a $10 million project to create a restaurant precinct.  When Mitchell and Brantman came to work on the project it was already found that the architect and structural engineer was using models. So naturally, they also used models for their own benefit. Estimates were configured and elemental costs benchmarked along with the overall functional performance of the design. The QS (industry lingo for quantity surveyors if you haven’t caught on) provided feedback to the designers and the costs were analysed, reanalysed and alterations were made to meet budget, or reduce further costs.

Now back before BIM was invented or implemented, most QS spent 90% of their time calculating costs, a lengthy and tedious process. But now they can focus on the finer things in life, and that’s applying their precious wisdom to generate even more savings through interrogation of the data. Therefore, at the end of the day it’s a fast and effective way to determine the costs.

So BIM has enabled all the 5D QS’s to get back to doing the things they love, and not having to waste their precious time on boring chores like cost calculations. Because, well, 5D BIM does it all for them. It’s their technology that makes life that little bit easier. It may not look as fancy to the casual outsider, but for those involved in the field of QS I’m sure they agree that the time and cost savings can’t be argued with. It’s able to drive costs while providing a strong platform for negotiation with contractors and subcontractors through the visualisation of quantities. So at the end of the day, don’t be alarmed or accuse them of being lazy if you see all the QS’s out there eating their pringles on the couch, because at the end of the day they’ve done the hard yards and things are finally looking that little bit easier.


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