News

UKAS tasked with creating new BIM certification

27 October 2016

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has tasked the UK Accreditation Service (UKAS) with establishing a new certification scheme to show that companies comply with Level 2 BIM

Currently there are several competing certification schemes for BIM Level 2 available in the market, run by BRE Group, BSI, Lloyd’s Register and Ocean Certification.

UKAS says it has been asked by BEIS and the Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure (CPNI) to investigate a way to form a common, as yet undecided way of achieving BIM certification which will hopefully help deliver the Government Construction Strategy and avoid confusion for those seeking accredited certification for their BIM Level 2 activities.

Once a common approach has been agreed by BEIS and CPNI, it is anticipated that a pilot assessment programme will be undertaken to develop the necessary assessment and accreditation capability for this activity in accordance with international conformity assessment standards.

Dan Rossiter, BRE’s senior BIM communicator, welcomed the announcement: “I am glad that UKAS have announced that they are considering extending their accreditation activity to include BIM. 

“BRE Global already runs a number of UKAS-accredited certification schemes and meets with them on a regular basis. I’m confident that BRE Global will actively pursue UKAS accreditation for BIM once it is available, and assist UKAS in any way possible. This is definitely a positive step towards a joined up approach to certification.”

Mark Bew, chairman of the government’s BIM Task Group, announced the plan for new certification as he officially launched Digital Built Britain at a conference in London.

Digital Built Britain is the latest stage of the UK’s BIM Task Group programme and brings together a number of digital and innovation programmes under one funding umbrella. Originally announced in the 2016 Budget, Digital Built Britain aims to deliver reductions in whole-life costs and carbon emissions, while improving productivity and capacity by using intelligent building information models, sensing technology and secure data and information infrastructure.

Garry Fannon, head of BIM at Willmott Dixon, does not believe the new accreditation scheme would be a major disruption to the current market as many contractors had already made their choice of scheme.

“There are already a number of BIM certs in the market, personally we’ve chosen to go with BRE. If UKAS develop their own approach that is fine,” he said.

John Adams, head of BIM services at BIM Strategy, added that he thought a new scheme could help encourage people engage with BIM, which is good thing: “Anything new in helping people get BIM certified is good. What we need is some overall direction and structure.”

BRE Global already runs a number of UKAS-accredited certification schemes and meets with them on a regular basis. I’m confident that BRE Global will actively pursue UKAS accreditation for BIM once it is available, and assist UKAS in any way possible. This is definitely a positive step towards a joined up approach to certification.– Dan Rossiter, BRE