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Centre for Digital Built Britain


It is widely recognised that public sector procurers have played a key part in the UK’s take up of Building Information Modelling (BIM) and this has been due, in the main part, to the central Government mandated adoption of BIM from 2011 onwards. Since the BIM mandate deadline of April 2016, which required all central Government projects to include Employers Information Requirements (EIR) as part of their procurement documents, Government Departments and Agencies have continued their journey towards fully embedding BIM into their organisations as ‘business as usual’.

This ongoing drive towards mature BIM adoption is increasingly in response to the need for through-life operational benefits rather than short-term capital phase efficiencies. These benefits are brought about by the provision of assured information  to enable the improved management and operation of assets, resulting in significant efficiencies being realised in those parts of these owner/operator organisations where there are notable long term costs, costs that significantly outweigh short term capital costs. Despite the drive for BIM shifting towards an operational focus, these benefits cannot be achieved if through-life information requirements aren’t defined as part of capital procurement in line with a standard defined and aligned information management process. Meanwhile, the procurement of assured information for their existing legacy estate, that can also be included in an estate/portfolio wide Asset Information Model (AIM), is also being considered by many organisations, as the benefits of owning assured information are increasingly being realised.

The Public Sector ISO Transition Working Group (PSITWG) first met in June 2019 with the aim of building on Public Sector BIM adoption to date and allowing Departments and Agencies to collectively plan a consistent transition to the new BS EN ISO 19650 standards. This transition will include the adoption of processes, provision of technologies and consistent knowledge sharing, with the aim of helping to deliver to these standards. The group helps to provide consistent use of terminology, understanding of information management processes and technologies, and also a better approach to procurement, in turn helping suppliers to provide efficient delivery of information/data to the following Departments and Agencies that are part of the group:

  • British Antarctic Survey
  • HMRC Estates
  • Construction & Procurement Delivery, Dept of Finance (NI)
  • Homes England
  • Defence Infrastructure Organisation
  • Ministry of Justice
  • Defence Science and Technology Laboratory
  • Network Rail
  • Department for Education
  • Office for Government Property
  • Environment Agency
  • Parliamentary Estates Directorate (House of Commons)
  • Government Property Agency
  • Public Health England
  • HS2 - Infrastructure Directorate
  • Scottish Futures Trust
  • Highways England
  • Transport for London

The primary objective of the group is:

To ensure that Information Management using BS EN ISO 19650 standards and the UK BIM Framework is consistently, efficiently and effectively implemented.

In addition to ISO transition, in the 2020-21 financial year one of the key objectives of the group will be to continue to develop a common understanding and approach to the development of Organisational Information Requirements (OIR) and Asset Information Requirements (AIR), aligned to both BS EN ISO 19650 / the UK BIM Framework and asset lifecycle events, to enable procurement and evidencing of the need for consistent information and data. The aim will be to provide the following a best practice framework for capturing and developing OIR and also support and guidance material.

The PSITWG OIR subgroup aims to demonstrate the purpose and value of OIRs to organisations by:

  • showing how they provide input to project AIR, which can support better organisational decision making and operational asset management;
  • showing how they contribute to the development of Project Information Requirements (PIR) which outline what project information is needed to answer or inform high level strategic objectives at key decision points;
  • showing the benefit of connecting board room level strategic objectives to asset management;
  • demonstrating that relevant stakeholder engagement early in the process is invaluable in defining appropriate information requirements;
  • highlighting how information and data feedback helps achieve better performance, increased efficiencies and higher productivity; and
  • demonstrating that OIR can can change over time depending on business needs. 

Other deliverables over the next year will include:

  • increased communications to publicise the workings of the group, with the aim of engaging key stakeholders and the wider buildings/infrastructure community, including publishing case studies suitable for inclusion on CDBB website.;
  • information management related work with the aim of sharing consistent current approaches to Government Soft Landings, asset data definition, verification and validation, acceptance rules, processes and skills, using currently available technologies, including those that help deliver an Asset Information Model Common Data Environment (AIM CDE); and
  • developing a common understanding of the secure segregated approach to the delivery and storage of information & data.

The PSITWG plan to have a busy productive year, with the aim of sharing, and as a result advancing, the hard work of its members and their industry partners.