BESIX is Belgium's first construction company to obtain BIM Level 2 certification

12 January 2018

In December 2017, BESIX Contracting, through its Engineering department, was awarded BIM Level 2 certification by BSI Group, by meeting the criteria of the PAS 1192-2 standard (design and construction).

We are very proud to have obtained this certification, which rewards BESIX's strategic vision and its consistent investment in the implementation and intensive use of Building Information Management in numerous projects since 2010. Certification brings with it significant competitive advantages, including accelerated tendering processes and positive effects in risk control, safety and productivity.

BESIX, "Big in BIM"

"BIM" is an acronym for "Building Information Modelling". It is a set of methods and technologies that optimize the design, execution and management of a construction project. With BIM, the building is represented in a three-dimensional model, encompassing all relevant information.

For BESIX, BIM is the essential interface between the physical and digital aspects of the construction industry. Since 2010, we have been exploiting the new opportunities that BIM brings to the sector. We have put together a strong team that has participated in over 70 tenders and projects around the world. The successful implementation of BIM in these projects is dependent on having properly trained professionals and the right support technology.

Four maturity levels

BIM comprises four maturity levels (from 0 to 3). These were defined by the Government Construction Client Group (GCCG) in the United Kingdom. Level 2 is currently the highest level for which certification is obtainable. It is defined by a collaborative work environment in which 3D models are shared and databases pooled. This collaborative aspect relates both to internal stakeholders and external partners (suppliers, subcontractors and clients). BIM level 2 has been mandatory for government projects in the UK since 2016. BESIX is however the first Belgian construction company (and the second in Europe) as well as the first general contractor in Europe to receive BIM level 2 certification.

As yet there is still no ISO standard for BIM (see below). For this reason, most BIM Level 2 certifications are based today on a certain number of standards developed by the BSI Group (United Kingdom). Following close collaboration with the latter, BESIX recently obtained certification by meeting the PAS 1192-2 standard relating to information management requirements during the design and construction phases.

Benefits of certification

The PAS 1192-2 standard is an international benchmark for BIM best practices, which allows certified companies to guarantee their clients that work is carried out to stringent BIM standards. This certification, unique for a Belgian construction company, offers significant competitive advantages. First, being based on an standard that carries authority around the world, it eliminates the need for the client to conduct a BIM capability assessment. This speeds up the tendering process, saving both time and money for all stakeholders.  Compliance with PAS 1192-2 also has positive effects in terms of risk control, safety and productivity. The certification lays the foundation for future ISO standards 19650-11 and 19650-22, which are expected to be introduced after 2018. Finally – and proof of the importance of BIM level 2 – BESIX is now in charge of the PAS 1192-2 part of the university certificate in "BIM, integrated design and management" organized by the Louvain School of Engineering, the UCL Faculty of Architecture, Architectural Engineering and Urban Planning, and ECAM.

The next steps for BESIX in BIM are:

  • Intensifying the collaboration between BESIX's two Engineering departments (in Brussels and Dubai), and with the Group’s subsidiaries, in order to generalize the use of BIM level 2 throughout the Group and to ensure knowledge sharing between the different players;
  • Continuing to position itself as a key player in the generalization of BIM practice in the markets where the Group operates, by participating in symposia, working groups and conferences;
  • Strengthening partnerships with key players (clients, works maintenance managers, subcontractors, academic sector, research institutes, etc.).