Square Peg Round Hole: The Problem with BIM to Maximo

Building information modelling (BIM) is reshaping the world of building design and construction, by integrating data shared by different teams across multiple sources and converting it into a 3D virtual model. BIM effectively creates a single source of truth about a project which can be accessed by all stakeholders across the lifecycle of the asset, facilitating more efficient coordination and collaboration.

However, when it comes to asset management, BIM needs to be integrated into IBM Maximo  in order to leverage its full capabilities. This can be like trying to fit a square peg into a round hole, where the BIM model has been updated with data that is valuable during the design and construction phases, but not necessarily relevant or easily-interpreted by the operations and maintenance teams.

This is why it’s essential to partner with a trusted partner that can bring together digital engineering and asset management to create ongoing value  ̶  for a true BIM Maximo integration.

The Challenge of BIM Integration

One of the key challenges is a limited or emphasis on how BIM can effectively support asset management activities , even when asset owners are involved in the development of information requirements from early in the process. This stems from a lack of understanding of the relationships among the data elements on the BIM and ongoing maintenance sides of the project.

There is a fundamental difference between a project information model (PIM) used in design and construction, and an asset information model (AIM) needed for operations and maintenance. With teams focused solely on their area of specialization , design and construct teams create and use PIMs that are very rarely conditioned and ready for use as an AIM.

What Is Model Conditioning?

Model conditioning, along with consideration of use cases for asset management, results in a model integration effort to create value for Maximo users. This involves examining all available data structures across design and construction (D&C) and operations and maintenance (O&M)  ̶  including locations, spaces, items, assets  ̶  to identify which data from those objects can and should be imported into Maximo.

The objective of model conditioning is to match objects containing construction information that will be useful during asset management, and understand which operations and maintenance database object they will move to. It may consider a wide range of possible use cases, including:

  • conditional monitoring
  • inspection forms
  • asset visualization
  • graphical work planning
  • real-time reporting

Integrating Models into Maximo

IBM Maximo has a standard feature to automatically import data from BIM models. Two applications have been added to support BIM integration: COBie import which streamlines the data import process to allow BIM management from one location; and a 3D BIM model viewer which allows service requests and job plans for assets. The BIM model, in the form of a COBie spreadsheet, can be imported into Maximo locations, assets, systems, and classifications  However, this process can be cumbersome and not suited to infrastructure and industrial projects. Through customized and automated processes this can be resolved by experience digital delivery partners.

A trusted digital delivery partner can also facilitate the integration process by determining best practice for constructing the BIM model and importing the data seamlessly into Maximo. Standard operating procedures and design specifications can then be attached to any future project to ensure that design-build data is always in an accessible format for ongoing asset management.

In Conclusion:

When BIM is successfully integrated with Maximo, it becomes a powerful tool for providing O&M teams with up-to-date, accurate information created during building design and construction  ̶   bridging the gap between build and operate.

But bringing together data from different teams and phases of the project can sometimes feel like fitting a square peg into a round hole, but it does not have to. To solve this challenge, organizations can work with a digital delivery partner to map data from the PIM, which respects the design and construction phases and needs, into Maximo ultimately delivering an AIM that is ready to use and of value to operational staff for the life of the asset.

Visit the COSOL Global team at Maximo World 2023, along with DBM Vircon’s  Alastair Brook, our Global General Manager-Digital Engineering, and Ciaran Doyle, Regional Lead-Digital Engineering, to witness live demonstrations of BIM and Maximo integration in action across industrial, mining, and infrastructure sectors.