The architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) industry consists of separate players who work together to bring a project to fruition. By integrating these seemingly separate entities into a single industry, architects, engineers and contractors can work more efficiently to achieve a common goal. The AEC industry has several practical applications that facilitate the technology, outsourcing and exchange of information within the industry. To bring standardisation to the three different industry sectors a unified digital process was needed this became defined as Building Information Modeling.
The definition from the National BIM Standard says Building Information Modeling (BIM) is a digital representation of physical and functional characteristics of a facility. A BIM is a shared knowledge resource for information about a facility forming a reliable basis for decisions during its life-cycle; defined as existing from earliest conception to demolition.
BIM enables a single virtual information model to be generated and handed by the design team (architects, surveyors, civil, structural, MEP and services engineers) to the contractors and subcontractors and then on to the owner and facility operator. Each separate profession adds its unique discipline specific data to the single shared model. This facilitates collaboration between the varying teams working on the project and manages the impact of change on all dependent products and collaborators.