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Study Quantifies Value of BIM for Complex Construction Projects

Complex construction projects such as hospitals, laboratories, airports and high-tech manufacturing have the greatest risk for costly problems, but a new study by Dodge Data & Analytics, conducted with the partnership and support of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, demonstrates that the use of BIM has a high impact on reducing the risks and increasing the success of these projects.

To download the new study, "Measuring the Impact of BIM on Complex Buildings SmartMarket Report," visit

Owners, architects, engineers and contractors with significant BIM experience rated the impact of BIM on 23 separate complex project outcomes throughout the design and construction process, with the largest percentage noting the following:

  • 74% of contractors and 64% of architects report BIM has a high impact on improving the constructability of the final design, which can reduce or eliminate expensive rework in the field, and improve cost and schedule performance.
  • 73% of owners find that the use of BIM has a high impact on increasing their understanding of proposed design solutions, increasing their involvement in the design process and their satisfaction with the finished building.
  • 71% of engineers find that BIM has a high impact on improving the quality and function of the final design, traditionally thought impossible to do without increasing cost.

"As an industry, we need quantified metrics throughout the design and construction process to establish the solid business case for BIM on complex projects," states Renee Tietjen, Senior Architect, VA BIM Program Manager for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. "This was our goal in commissioning the study, and we hope that it is both a guide and an inspiration for project teams everywhere to continue careful evaluation of improvements from BIM and all the contributing factors that drive them."

Metrics for positive outcome improvements cited by BIM users in the report include:

  • 40% of owners find that use of BIM on their complex projects accelerates project completion by 5% or more.
  • 41% of contractors report that BIM reduces final construction cost by 5% or more.

The research also examines the drivers that enable these results. Better construction documents and improved teamwork and collaboration are widely recognized by all respondents as major contributors to project success. In addition, 63% of owners and 72% of contractors consider early trade contractor involvement to be a critical factor to achieve improved outcomes.

"Dodge's BIM studies over the last eight years have consistently shown that the industry sees value in BIM," says Steve Jones, Senior Director of Industry Insights at Dodge Data & Analytics. "However, this is the first study to start quantifying that value across hundreds of BIM users. There are enough successful completed BIM projects now to shift the conversation from stepwise process improvements for individual team members to tangible, repeatable and scalable impacts on overall project outcomes. That's what will truly transform the industry."


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