Posts Tagged 'LinkedIn'

BOQ’s are dead, long live BIM!

There seems to be quite a bit of chat around at the moment about BIM so I thought I’d have a read of one or two of the articles that I found and share some of them with you.

The first article that caught my attention was from the JCT of all people in their JCTNews April 2011 publication that came out with ‘building’ magazine recently. Then along with that I saw an article in the RICS Modus magazine (page 17) about BIM take up in the UK. Then I found on LinkedIn a discussion in the building industry group that provoked some interesting comments, this also has a link to the NBS with the report they published in March 2011.

So, what is BIM and why will boq’s be dead?

BIM is – Building Information Modelling –  and it’s not new, it’s been around for a while.

Why will boq’s be dead? Well actually they won’t it’s just the way they go about being produced will change.  You see BIM is all about integrating all aspects of the design and specification on a project. Yes it’s about CAD and 3D modelling of projects, but the interesting bit about it is that if we all collaborate and get our act together we will be able to save thousands of pounds off the cost of construction projects. The hard part is getting everyone to buy into it and see the benefits, and at the moment there are too many sceptics around. And also the cost is too prohibitive on smaller projects – at the moment.

The report I liked the best was produced by the NBS as it seemed to portray things warts and all, and gave some great statistics of the participants in their survey, like:

  • 43% had never heard of BIM
  • 64% don’t agree that BIM is all about the software
  • 81% agree that it brings better co-ordination of construction documents
  • 85% agree that in 5 years time they see themselves adopting it for at least some of their projects

Why aren’t we using it more now? I don’t know, but the comments at the end of ‘BIM – the long view from architectural and design practice’ by Robert Klaschka from Studio Klaschka may give you the reason why, (that’s in the NBS report by the way).

Either way it’s an exciting future and I think as quantity surveyors we should be embracing this new technology and endeavouring to make everyone’s life easier in the construction process, instead of ignoring it and thinking it will go away!

If you want to read the RICS defintion of BIM click here

You can also follow Studio Klaschka on twitter @studioklaschka

How to manage your business RICS style

How quaint! While all around us people have been re-branding, re-naming, becoming expert Consultants in all sorts of property related matters, and operating under limited liability status in some form or other (because of our dear friends at HMRC) the RICS has produced a document called ‘Practice management guidelines – The management of surveying business’. It’s the quaint expression of “practice management” that got me. Maybe it’s just me, but are we still called practices?! This aside, the point is that the document is a guidance note. Just advice, so they say… But it comes with a health warning! Though it may just be a guidance note, it goes on to say that if you don’t follow their advice and you get a P.I. claim then the RICS will take a dim view of you. And the courts too apparently, so read on…!

The guidelines were first published in 1997, updated in 2003 and have now been updated again in 2010. They’ve even added references to CRM and social media, with LinkedIn getting a special mention. They also have ‘must do’, ‘recommended’ and ‘advisable’ sections, so make sure you’ve read and understood them!

To be fair, it’s a very good read with lots of useful information and tips for any professional in business. They give really good pointers on business management, people management and current legislation too, with references of where to go for further advice if you need it. I really liked the section on practice leadership, leading your management team and the part about understanding your team members and the eight generic types of personalities you might encounter, which they have labelled as follows:

  • The independent: prefers to be left alone and often finds it difficult to work with others
  • The entrepreneur: highly commercial type who is an excellent networker and deal maker
  • The traditionalist: considers the former professional ways are not only still best, but the only way
  • The plateaued: reliable and friendly but passed over for promotion and lacking apparent motivation for change
  • The former star: great ‘back when’, but living on the memory and reputation of past glories
  • The politician: canny operator, but usually on the look out for number one
  • The teflon type: difficult to pin down and make accountable
  • The ego: has an opinion on everything and is always right (in his or her eyes anyway).

I particularly liked the teflon type who they suggest:  “know all the loopholes and dodges, so involve them in reviewing procedures and contracts.” So if you’ve got one of these that’s the tip on how to deploy them!

What I don’t understand though is why they chose to reproduce the second edition questions as an appendix again?! Confusing. But all in all I really liked it. This an example of good work by the RICS and, in my opinion, some genuinely useful spending of our membership fees.

I actually happened to visit the Great George Street HQ yesterday (see photo). It’s the first time in a year or so I’ve been and I’d forgotten what a lovely old building it is. I used the members room, though it felt a bit deserted… but then it would be wouldn’t it… they’ve sent everyone to Coventry! 😉

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If you would like to read the Practice management guidelines then you can download them here, but sadly only if you are an RICS member! If you are not a member and would still like to take a look then please email me and I will forward you a copy.

Social Media and all that

Whats your view about social media at the moment.

Do you use it to interact with your customers and target audience?

Are you finding it harder or easier of late to speak to the decision makers, do you think social media will make any difference for you? Is it just another phase we are all going through. Do you find that a lot of the ‘experts’ that you come across haven’t been involved all that long? So what makes them expert do you ask? 

So where do you stand on all of this, is it something for you? Should you care and be involved? Well I think it’s something we should all take note of – like it or not, it’s here. And to stay for a while to come. The thing I like most about it is it’s engaging, and people will genuinely help you if they can. But it’s two way, don’t expect to take all the while, you’ve got to give too, otherwise you’ll get nothing from it.

It does seems to me that the smaller the business the more nimble you are and the more responsive you will be. The larger construction companies just don’t quite seem to get it yet.

Well that’s the conclusion I came to when I read this really interesting article form Nick Pauley at Pauley Creative.  In fact having a look at some of the articles Nick has written on his website could be a lesson to a lot of us in Construction.

Made me think about what we are doing, so look out for some subtle changes to our website as a result!

There was also an interesting tweet I came across in the week from Guido Gihaux that had a link to a youtube video about the use of social media in the UK – well worth a view, a lot of other people have picked up on it too.

So all I should say for now is follow me on twitter, link up with us on LinkedIn and become our fan on facebook!

Adjudication Injustice

Now here’s a thing, I started a discussion recently on Linkedin about an adjudication issue we had crop up with a client of ours.

The issue was that we had successfully defended a claim against our client. We beat them fair and square as the saying goes. Now I’m not one to boast about our achievements (maybe I should!) but I saw it as all in a days work and how we go about doing things: Give the client the service they want (tell them how it is, mind you!) pay your dues and let’s work together on the next project. Just be professional about things, you know?

So here’s the issue: As I say, we defended the referral notice successfully with the adjudicator ruling in our client’s favour. He also decided that the other side should pay all of his fees too. Here comes the justice part: The other side (being advised by a reputable claims consultancy business I’ll add) have decided that they will not pay the adjudicator’s fees. Basically they don’t like the justice that has been served on them. So guess what… Yes, you guessed it… The adjudicator is signed up on the basis of joint and several liability. So our client has to pay the fees in full and then spend more money trying to get that money back too! Now to me that’s not really justice for our client. He has, quite rightly, defended a claim made against him; it’s been ruled that he’s right, and now because the other side don’t like the result for something they started, our client picks up that tab too! He’ll never get his money from the subcontractor as I fear they will not be around. As the theme of the comments made make… That’s life and the way of adjudication! Suck it up and get on with it!

If you want to read all of the comments or participate in the discussion (have you ever come across the situation where the other side refuses to pay the adjudicators fees?) you’ll have to join the Contract Risks Management Group – Construction Industry on Linkedin. Or otherwise you can post your comments here!


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About Me

I’m now the Managing Director of Mynott Associates Limited my own specialist measurement business. I’ve been in the industry all of my life since I left school. My first job was with Bovis Construction as a management trainee where I trained to become a quantity surveyor. I’ve worked for contractors all through my career, I am FRICS, FCIOB and MCIHT qualified and act as an RICS assessor. I’m also a keen Arsenal supporter having followed them from a young boy

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