Andy Stolworthy

Lessons learned as an early adopter of BIM

  • 14 Apr 2016

GUEST BLOG: Andy Stolworthy, BIM Manager for ASSA ABLOY UK Specification, discusses how their early experience of developing BIM objects taught them an important lesson in data. 

BIM is far from a new concept. In fact, its origins can be traced back to 1962 whilst its use along with CAD software has been prevalent in the construction industry for over 20 years. 

The introduction of the Government Soft Landings and Construction 2025 strategy, which saw BIM level 2 become mandatory on all public funded projects this month, changed things at every level of the construction industry. And whilst the degree of success to which it has penetrated the sector is debateable there is no doubt that is has become a mainstream requirement. 

When we initially created the UK Specification division, we were clear that a value add service was key to winning specifications above and beyond our product capability, and BIM was very much integral to this. From the early days we had a desire to play a part in making BIM work for us and our clients. 

So, whilst we weren’t pioneers of the BIM movement, we were an early adopter as a manufacturer and this came with a very steep learning curve. 

Throughout the process (from understanding the concept to making it a reality) our view of BIM changed. The more we understood and spoke to architects and design-led contractors the more we realised that BIM wasn’t just about creating objects that fit into a certain software or work within a larger model but it’s about the quality of the data you provide. 

This is when our journey took a turn and we realised that the true goal for us and the real benefit for our clients was about adding value not meeting a required standard or being able to say “we’ve got BIM objects.”

To that end we started thinking about the data clients needed with a doorset and how we delivered that too them. Yes, BIM is still important but so are whole life costings, sustainability data and creating a single source of supply across multiple packages.  

First and foremost architects and designers need data from manufacturers but how and when this data is delivered will vary and will continue to evolve. BIM has been highlighted as an effective way of communicating this data and one we will continue to use and develop. However, to truly add value and improve our service we believe it must be used alongside other methods of communicating important and valuable data.

Leave a Reply

Latest news


Vent-Axia welcomes editorial published in BMJ on ventilation reducing COVID-transmission

With further easing of lockdown restrictions on 17 May, pubs, restaurants, gyms, offices and other businesses should prepare for reopening by checking and improving their ventilation, says Vent-Axia.

Posted in Air Conditioning, Articles, Building Industry News, Building Services, Facility Management & Building Services, Health & Safety, Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning - HVAC, Interiors, news, Posts, Research & Materials Testing


500,000 homes later: Barratt revisits past seven decades of homebuying to mark major milestone

Leading national housebuilder Barratt Developments PLC is celebrating the completion of its 500,000th home, with the launch of a new digital tool which takes a nostalgic look back through the past 60 years.

Posted in Articles, Building Industry News, Building Products & Structures, Building Services, Facility Management & Building Services, Information Technology, Innovations & New Products


Senior brings its aluminium solutions to the ‘Steel City’

Leading manufacturer Senior Architectural Systems has successfully delivered the full aluminium fenestration packages to two new contracts in Sheffield.

Posted in Aluminium Products, Articles, Building Industry News, Building Products & Structures, Building Systems, Case Studies, Curtain Walling, Doors, Facades, Glazing, Restoration & Refurbishment, Retrofit & Renovation, Walls, Windows


Centre of excellence for special educational needs is improved with Selectaglaze secondary glazing

A new school and centre of excellence for special educational needs in Chester’s historic Abbey Square features Selectaglaze secondary glazing. This is part of the refurbishment of two Grade II* Listed Georgian buildings.

Posted in Articles, Building Industry News, Building Products & Structures, Building Services, Building Systems, Case Studies, Glass, Glazing, Lighting, Posts, Restoration & Refurbishment, Retrofit & Renovation, Windows