Share This:


On Wednesday 3rd December Constructing Excellence Yorkshire & Humber (CEYH) hosted the Constructing Excellence BIM Task group Q & A session with Richard Lane, Director of Creonova Consulting and Training Development Officer for UK BIM task group. The Q & A was conducted by John Lorimer as part of his “Lorimer’s Lunch”  interview series for CEYH.


If hypothetically, the government removed the 2016 level 2 Mandate tomorrow, would the BIM transformation have already gathered enough momentum to carry on regardless?

The mandate has been incredibly valuable for establishing Government’s leadership around BIM, creating a broad conversation across the industry and pulling everyone together behind a common goal. It doesn’t guarantee success, particularly as it can be human nature at an individual level to resist when told what to do. Assuming that an increasing proportion of the industry now understands BIM and sees value in new ways of working I’m confident that transition would continue.

Have you seen any evidence of BIM implementation resulting in behavioural change/ more collaborative behaviours in the government departments you have worked with yet?

Definitely. From the outset clients are working collaboratively with their Tier 1 suppliers do define the specifics of BIM implementation within specific clients or frameworks. For example, in the development of template Employers Information Requirements documents.

There has also been been a definite increase in government departments working together, sharing knowledge to try and help each other for example Ministry of Justice, Department of Health and Met Police sharing ideas around standards for secure environments. Collaborative behaviours certainly aren’t universal but on the whole there has been a positive increase in government departments working collaboratively.

The public sector are risk adverse, how are they being empowered to do this?

The key for me is leadership. A great example of this is Terry Stocks, Deputy Head of the Estates Department, Ministry of Justice is setting the example by leading the implementation of BIM, two stage tendering & lean delivery through collaborative approaches.

Where do the barriers occur?

Most commonly where organisations are operating under business conditions which were set up prior to the implementation of BIM, where procurement methods, forms of contract and client requirements don’t support collaborative working or encourage trialling of new BIM working practices.

Is the BIM journey driving people to be more collaborative?

It helps. As long as the value is understood and the business environment is created to support it. As we approach the end of the 4 year BIM journey we are analysing progress made against the 10 tests of the hypothesis originally defined in the BIS BIM Strategy. (Details on government website here – point 3) Key elements of this are that BIM has to be Understandable (something we continue to work on) and Valuable.

Are we recording that anywhere?

We are internally reviewing departmental implementation against the 10 tests, but it is unclear at this time if it would be shared publically in that form or used to inform other outputs such as case studies.


Questions from the floor


Benedict Wallbank, SmartBIM – What percentage of Ministry of Justice and Ministry of Defence tenders are now going out with EIRs (Employer Information Requirements)?

Those departments have templates for EIRs which we are starting to roll out on newly tendered projects now. We still have some work to do to establish the detailed requirements related to the information exchanges and the Digital Plan of Work (

should help with this. We must remember that we are still in a transition period and as we integrate BIM as “business as usual” EIRs will develop & evolve.

Howard Jeffrey, Skanska – How are you addressing the management of expectations during the transition period? Also what does collaboration actually mean?

When I first joined the BIM Task Group I think we relied too much on the mandate in our engagement with clients. Since then we’ve evolved our approach to where the conversations are much more client led and value driven. Clarity is key, it’s a lot easier to collaborate if everybody is clear on what is expected of each project participant.

David Jellings, Solibri UK – In your unique position what are the common threads and avoid the word “collaboration”

Compliance is key!  Compliance with the 2016 mandate is being measured centrally within Government. Departments are defining the details of their implementation but with common criteria such as the transacting of data at agreed points in the process, the delivery of an EIR document.  The journey is different but the destination is the same.  We are all working to get value from the digital data.


lorimer    About Lorimer’s Lunch

John Lorimer has worked as a client, consultant, major contractor and sub- contractor in the construction industry across the UK, Europe and the Far East. He is Chair of the BIM Academy, a Board member of CITB, Visiting Professor at Salford University, member of the BIS BIM Steering Group and Chair of the Constructing Excellence BIM Task Group. He is also Director of his own Consultancy service, JLO Innovation, specialising in BIM, Procurement and Business/Culture change.

Lorimer’s Lunch is a series of interviews John conducts with different BIM advocates from across the sector. Questions are invited from an assembled audience as well as over social media. Keep checking back on the Constructing Excellence blog for details of the next Lorimer’s Lunch & how to submit your questions.