13 December 2018

Progression of BIM adoption and how it’s improving

The NBS National BIM Report 2018 told us that almost three quarters of respondents are now using BIM, a 12% increase on 2017 which was the highest year-on-year growth since 2014.

This year I’ve seen a shift in more people engaging with what BIM actually is and how it applies to them, going from something we’ve all talked about in theory to something much more practical. And perhaps what’s most welcoming to see, is that it’s not just architects engaging with BIM, more contractors and clients are asking for it which is having a bigger impact on the design community.

Although BIM adoption is not universal yet (a quarter have yet to adopt BIM) we have come a long way over the seven years that we’ve been monitoring BIM but we recognise there’s still more to do.

Classification and specification

I’ve welcomed all of the conversations I’ve had this year around classification, raising awareness around the benefits and impact that Uniclass 2015 is having on the industry. Uniclass 2015 is a unified classification for the UK industry covering all construction sectors. It contains consistent tables classifying items of all scale from a facility such as a railway down through to products such as a CCTV camera in a railway station.

Showing more people the advantage of having all of this structured information in one place is seeing others looking towards this as a solution to their problems. Asset managers, for example, want access to this information that is going to help them do their jobs for the next 10, 20, 30 years.

Slowly this is happening but more needs to be done to raise awareness of Uniclass 2015 going forward into 2019 and beyond. We’ve had some fantastic case studies this year from some large government organisations in the UK (Transport for London) and Australia (Transport for New South Wales), announcing their commitment to tagging all assets going forward to this classification which in turn is meaning those within the supply chain are now needing to find out more information.

With NBS Chorus we’re trying to create and develop this seamless link with Uniclass 2015 that hasn’t been possible in previous specification products.


When I joined BIM Alliance, I personally felt that a lot of companies had their own interests when it came to working together on various projects. But over the last two years that I’ve spent with the team here, I’ve really seen a better sense of collaboration from everyone involved. We’re sharing our problems, our ideas and our solutions across the board which is great to see and definitely what’s needed.

Of course there is always going to be a sense of commercial competiveness but working together to find better solutions, which can then be targeted better depending on the business you’re in, is definitely the attitude and direction we need to have going into the New Year and years to come.

BIM for the journey

2019 will see the first two international standards published for BIM, BS EN ISO 19650 parts 1 and 2. Focused around contents and principles and the delivery phase of assets, the move towards BIM Level 2 as a UK standard to an international one, is a decision that’s hoped to continue encouraging adoption of BIM within the UK, as BIM continues to be recognised as a technology and process that crosses geographies and so should have international standards.

The journey towards working better together in the UK and internationally is something I see NBS playing a huge role in. We have a solution to help, no matter where you are on your BIM journey. Whether that’s starting out and helping to define who does what on your BIM projects with the NBS BIM Toolkit, or working collaboratively with teams between the UK and Australia with NBS Chorus – we’re here for the journey.