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What are the benefits of BIM?

Better project coordination and collaboration with stakeholders, efficient workflows, 3D visualizations, and resulting improved project outcomes are just some of the benefits of using BIM processes.

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What is BIM?

Building Information Modeling (BIM) is a process that begins with the creation of an intelligent 3D model and enables document management, coordination and simulation during the entire lifecycle of a project (plan, design, build, operation and maintenance).

What is BIM used for?

BIM is used to design and document building and infrastructure designs. Every detail of a building is modeled in BIM. The model can be used for analysis to explore design options and to create visualizations that help stakeholders understand what the building will look like before it’s built. The model is then used to generate the design documentation for construction.

What is the process of BIM?

The process of BIM supports the creation of intelligent data that can be used throughout the lifecycle of a building or infrastructure project.

  • Plan

    Inform project planning by combining reality capture and real-world data to generate context models of the existing built and natural environment.

  • Design

    During this phase, conceptual design, analysis, detailing and documentation are performed. The preconstruction process begins using BIM data to inform scheduling and logistics.

  • Build

    During this phase, fabrication begins using BIM specifications. Project construction logistics are shared with trades and contractors to ensure optimum timing and efficiency.

  • Operate

    BIM data carries over to operations and maintenance of finished assets. BIM data can be used down the road for cost-effective renovation or efficient deconstruction too.

Why is BIM important?

According to the UN, by 2050 the world's population will be 9.7 billion. The global AEC industry must look to smarter, more efficient ways to design and build not just as a means to keep up with global demand but to help create spaces that are smarter and more resilient too.

BIM not only allows design and construction teams to work more efficiently, but it allows them to capture the data they create during the process to benefit operations and maintenance activities. This is why BIM mandates are increasing across the globe.

View countries with BIM mandates

Global BIM Mandates

Many countries have standards mandating that BIM is used on new building and infrastructure projects. These countries include: Brazil, Chile, Denmark, Finland, Norway, United Kingdom, South Korea, Singapore and Vietnam.

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How to successfully implement BIM at your firm

Moving to BIM can seem like a daunting task, in this video we take a look at two strategies that will help your firm create an effective BIM vision and manage change during your transition to BIM.

Play video (3:23 min.)

What are the BIM tools for your industry?

Integrated BIM tools for building design, civil infrastructure, and construction will equip you to meet any project challenge – now and in the future.

  • Architects and engineers are creating high-performing building designs.

  • Use connected workflows to improve predictability and profitability.

  • Evaluate design intent while also communicating construction intent.

  • Improve MEP (mechanical, electrical, and plumbing) design quality and collaborate in real time to support the project delivery process.

  • Manage the design and construction of intelligent piping, structures, and processes more efficiently and collaboratively throughout project lifecycle and at hand-off.

  • Explore how structural design and detailing software helps you win new business and support project delivery.

Free BIM Resources

Building Design Guide

Learn how BIM workflows automate the ordinary and can help you unlock new levels of creativity and innovation.


Get personalized BIM-ready tips for transportation, land development, and civil structures in just two steps.

Change the map

Explore how the AEC Collection’s powerful set of BIM and CAD software provides every designer, engineer and contractor the tools they need.

More FAQs

  • What is the difference between Revit and BIM?

    The difference between Revit and BIM is that BIM is a process – a methodology – for project teams to interface with technology to deliver better project outcomes in the AEC market, while Revit is a software platform designed to facilitate that process. The tools in Revit are specifically designed to support BIM, allowing users to create a structured, intelligent model with information stored in it.

  • What is the difference between 3D CAD modeling and BIM?

    The difference between 3D CAD modeling and BIM is that, while both processes provide geometric expressions of buildings and infrastructure, the BIM process goes beyond geometry to capture the relationships, metadata, and behaviors intrinsic to real-world building components. Combined with technology of the BIM ecosystem, this data drives improved project outcomes in a way that 3D modeling cannot.

  • What are the advantages of BIM over CAD?

    Both CAD and BIM processes are used to capture and communicate the design and construction intent of an AEC project using a drawing representation, helping stakeholders understand what needs to be built, and how. BIM enables design and construction teams to leverage their technology investment to do much more. The BIM process supports creation and management of information across the lifecycle of an AEC project by federating all multi-disciplinary design and construction documentation into a common dataset. Since that data can be accessed in multiple representations, from 2D to 3D to tables, the information is far more accessible and connected than the disparate data sources associated with traditional CAD approaches.