Sssshhh!!!! – Don’t mention Level 2! Hey! It’s crunchy dog time!

Hey there.

Greetings Earthlings.

Found this on a website a while ago

“Corporations will own…

The next horizon of innovation

We have entered a decade of disruption of large corporate business models, driven by a step change in the power of technology and the audacity and speed of start-ups.

To be fit for the future, visionary companies will deliberately reimagine themselves by injecting or attacking established models with new ideas fuelled by technology. “

from  – BCG Digital Ventures

Sounds appropriate doesn’t it?! The transition of our lives to digital is inevitable and is confronting us all around, only some are still holding back even now. How long can they hold out before the avalanche overwhelms them?

But…

Don’t mention the…

You might remember Basil Fawlty and the Germans sketch …..don’t mention the war.! (If you’re a Millennial or late Gen Y, then apologies – this is Boomer/GenX humour! ;O) )

There is a lot of talk about Level 3 and certainly the Task Group focus has shifted, as seen by recent media. That’s fine, we need to know what’s next and where we are going. But I don’t want anyone to see this is an opportunity for the abnegation of responsibility or commitment to developing and ensuring industry-wide Level 2 adoption as soon as possible. For all the talk about Level 3 and beyond, if we don’t see a move to Level 2 across our whole industry within the next few years, you can forget Level 3, it won’t happen. Simples. (Dear Earthlings – Level 2 is but a staging post on the journey, to get us all used to the concepts of using digital tools and shareable asset data in consistent, structured and accurate ways across the industry. This then gives us a robust platform to move forward and progress together.)

The “mandate”

The “mandate” has driven a lot over the last 5 years for central Government departments but the next tier down of public sector organisations and the private sector are left to rely on a combination of push and pull from the rest of industry, which has left many with a convenient excuse, “Well if the client isn’t asking for BIM why should we do anything?” or “It’s a private sector project, the mandate doesn’t apply to us”. The mandate has let too many, the majority probably, off the hook on this. Reliance on push/pull, peer pressure and client drive takes a lot of time, effort and support. In fact recent stats show how the spending profile in the industry has changed. Public sector funded projects account for less than 25% of our industry. So “The Mandate” applies to 25% of the industry, so we need to find a different kind of conversation for the rest of industry. Not forgetting we need to influence something like 2,000,000 people by 2020 in the process.

Don’t mention it!

In some quarters it has become fashionable to “not mention Level 2” . Which I think is missing the point of where we are really isn’t it?. However successful you are, and however good you are, you will need to be reliant on someone else at some point. So how good are they? Because their capability will affect your ability to deliver. There is a much bigger picture here.

The BIM hothouse

In the cosy BIM choir hothouse that has developed over the last few years, it’s warm, it’s hot, it’s nice to have our colleagues and friends and we think the same way and have our shared stories. Keep drinking the Kool-Aid chaps – you’ve invented your own version of a virtual reality…the only problem is that it’s totally detached from the real reality we face everyday in the industry!

Don’t get me wrong. There’s lots of great stuff being done to progress BIM by a lot of good people, but we are far from the point where we can say Level 2 is a done deal for everyone.

Repetition, repetition, and …

To keep repeating the messages around the Level 2 doesn’t make great news and in fact it’s quite boring isn’t it?!

But isn’t that what we really need???

Sure you can take the view well if they can’t be bothered to learn they can catch up when they’re ready, which again is missing the point. It’s interesting to me that few really look beyond their own commercial self-interest, not surprising I suppose – in  evolutionary terms I guess in the end it doesn’t matter, blood will be on the floor, careers and businesses will still end, anyway,  however “successful” we are. Believe me the reckoning is coming, chickens will come to roost, turkeys will vote for Christmas and the sky, metaphorically, will fall down.  The transition will be messy, and famous names will disappear into oblivion. There will be pain. Some will succeed and some will fail. We can see this from other industries. But those that adopt early, and drive through the learning curve, even if you started right now, you would be in good shape by 2020. It’s not too late……yet.

I’d like to minimise the pain and we can, but it has to be a collective effort. Millennials aren’t the issue, you see it’s the Boomers, GenXers and the rest stuck in the middle. People in mid to late career who will face challenging times when they really don’t want to and really can’t dodge this.

Long tails and BIM at the cliff edge

As the cutting edge move off to BIM Level 3 and beyond, the already long tail of our industry is stretching even further behind.

But remember, your BIM CDE (Common Data Environment) is only as good as all the stakeholders including the supply chain that are able to use it. This is the real challenge for some of the supply chain at the lower tiers at the moment. If they can’t participate effectively, then your lovely BIM just falls off a cliff – what then?

Impact and influence

Let’s be honest and look at the impact we’ve had over the last 6 years. How much of the industry has really been influenced to change? How many are still sitting on the sidelines for whatever reason?

We’ve already created a two-speed perhaps more/3/4/5 speed industry, it will only get worse if we don’t change, and start to look beyond our own interests and help give each other a leg up. Otherwise Level 3 will  just become a digital island in an analogue sea/industry. “Modernise or Die”, thus sayeth Mark Farmer. (Awesome report – read it!)

The cost or the price?

You might say well so be it, that’s the price of change and advancement – companies will die, careers will end or change path. And I guess that is true, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Hindsight is a wonderful thing. We could say that the mandate didn’t go far enough. But we are where we are and the Level 2 framework we now have is the envy of the world and rightly so.

THE change – me change – you change

We can change the course of history. We can make this work. We have to learn to help each other and work together, and this comes down to leadership. In fact it comes down to you and me. The will to go first, step up, not to wait, but to reach out, and work together.

But let me say that all again.

YOU can change the course of history. YOU can make this work. YOU have to learn to help us work together better. YOU can make a difference. Right now. Today. And everyday.

A butterfly flaps its’ wings in Australia, resulting in flooding in Cumbria. Chaos theory. Small actions and changes can make a big difference and unforeseen and great impacts.

JFDI

Remember Just Do It or more affectionately JFDI? We know what the F means. Now is not a time to keep on talking and over thinking anymore. Time is running out and the sands of time are no longer on our side. Pressures for change gather both within and without our industry. The guillotine falls, the window closes.

It is time……

We have talked and talked. We have the reports and studies. It is time to act, reach out and pull our recalcitrant industry up by its bootlaces and yank it kicking and screaming into what will be very soon the 22nd century.

 

So then grasshopper……what will YOU do?

 

Ciao ciao!

Cheers!

JOHN.

JOHNEYNON. – Is a journeyman architect, design manager, BIM Champ, writer, blogger, lecturer and speaker. You can catch up with him at www.zenanddm.com

 

 

 

 

 

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