What is the Information Manager role?
BIM has been making a massive contribution to the timely and smooth delivery of construction projects. This process has resulted in large amounts of digital data being created to capture all areas of the project. Because of this, a role is needed to handle such data, requiring a high level of control and accuracy, ensuring it is appropriately interpreted and that it reaches the right people at the right time. This role, aptly named ‘Information Manager’ has now been developed to help manage this process.
In 2011, the Government enforced BIM Level 2 as a mandate for any public sector construction projects. There are three places within the “BIM Level 2” documentation where the Information Manager role is mentioned:
- PAS 1192-2:2013 Specification for information management for the capital/delivery phase of construction projects using building information modeling
- Building Information Modelling (BIM) Protocol; CIC First Edition 2013
- CIC Outline Scope of Services for the Role of Information Management
What does the Information Manager role Consist of?
The role of an Information manager is highly skilled and involves challenges such as federating the asset model, validating the data and producing COBie outputs at each RIBA stage. BIM is all about turning data into information which in turn provides knowledge. If the data is missing, of the incorrect format, not delivered in time or just plain wrong then the information becomes non-existent or misleading at best, and the whole point of BIM is then missed, and the entire process becomes a waste of time.
- It is establishing and managing the common data environment – an online collaborative environment that can be accessed by stakeholders along with setting up procedures and processes to ensure the integrity and security of the common data environment.
- Overseeing the management and exchange of project information:
- Establishing the information structure and standards and deciding upon the agreed output format
- Determining the level of information detail for each stage of the project
- Enabling integration of information by the project team
- Keeping records and other administrative tasks
Why is the Information Manager role so crucial in BIM?
Where projects are contractor-led, it is generally accepted that the Main Contractor takes on this role (or they appoint someone to assist with this task). However, where a project is design team led, before the main contractor being selected, there is more ambiguity about who will carry out this role. In many cases, the best approach may be for the IM to be appointed by the client although this approach is rarely undertaken due to clients lack of understanding of the BIM process and the critical role that the BIM manager plays.
Appointing an experienced and skilled Information Manager policing, provides the project with the assurance that the right data will be captured in the correct format and at the right time. In many cases the most value is derived when the Information manager appointed is not beholden to any of the stakeholders with an interest in the project and is truly independent and free from bias. For the best possible result of BIM greatness then it is essential to involve the Information Manager at an early stage in the RIBA process
- Data is at the very heart of BIM. Without data, there is no information and therefore no knowledge and no value. A typical construction project involves many stakeholders including, contractor, architect(s), consultants, PMs, engineers, and building product manufacturers. The coordination of data exchange is at the very core of the success of the project to ensure that the Right data in the right format is delivered at the right time.
- Data needs to be validated at the point of delivery to ensure that it is correct and in context as important decisions are made based on its integrity.
- The Information manager role is very much an enabler for the BIM Co-Ordinator role, and indeed the two roles are perhaps sometimes best combined. These roles are both keys in the coordination and management of the project delivery.
What are the next steps?
- Find out more about how Majenta can help you with Information Management
- Get in touch with our team, contact us today