Lifecycle Data Management and Information Integration
Monday, November 5, 2007 at 11:05PM
Toby Considine in BIM, Enterprise Interaction, Standards

(This post was prepared during a FIATECH workshop on capital project priorities)

Do you find capital projects seem to ask the same questions again and again. Promises made in programming are lost in delivery. Contractors are unable to guess what the designers wanted. It can be hard to discover if you got what you asked for, and if everything works as promised. Do you wonder if your staff will be able to maintain a new facility in the right way, with the right parts, so you are unsure you will get full value from your investment?


A 2005 NIST study of the costs of poor interoperability estimated that $16 billion was lost each year in the capital industry.


All information associated with the design, construction, and operation of a building is captured and maintained for the life of the asset. Standard interfaces let any authorized person access the information they need using the tool they want. All design information and choices are available to the contractor during construction. During building handover, the commissioning agent compares results to the goals and promises made during design. Maintenance personnel have direct access to all information they need for best results.


The most significant challenges are cultural and organizational rather than technical. Contracts must demand delivery and sharing of all information in existing standard formats. Business processes need to be recast to reflect new responsibilities and liabilities; contract language must be adjusted.


Eliminating the costs of re-creating data and improving operations through appropriate access to information will reduce costs of acquisition and preserve asset value. Common data formats will improve interoperability at every stage of the facility life-cycle, increasing accuracy. Interoperability will increase competition and drive innovation while increasing accountability.

Article originally appeared on New Daedalus (
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