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How can Building Information Modelling (BIM) support the New Rules of Measurement (NRM1)

Wu, S; Ginige, K; Wood, GD; Jong, SW


S Wu

K Ginige

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Dr Gerard Wood
Associate Dean Academic QA & Enhancement

SW Jong


The emergence of BIM has remarkably changed the way the
construction industry operates. BIM through its extensive
digital capability of virtually representing physical and
functional characteristics of a built facility creates a shared source of information among the construction project team thereby forming a reliable platform for the decision making process to take place throughout the whole life cycle of the facility. It has shifted the industry from traditional paper based information management processes which typically tend to be cost ineffective, tiresome, error-ridden and time consuming, to automated processes facilitated by sophisticated technology that bring a number of advantages in terms of time, cost, and quality.
BIM’s capability of automating measurements through
extracting quantities directly from digital building models
is its key benefit towards quantity surveyors as it clearly
accelerates the traditional estimating process. BIM based
estimating can be executed in three ways, namely, by
exporting the measurements to spreadsheets, by directly
linking modelling tools with estimating plug-ins, and
using specialised BIM estimating tools. However, quantity
surveyors in the UK construction industry are yet to
integrate the comprehensive use of BIM into their practices.
The key reason for the limited usage of BIM in quantity
surveying practice is the unavailability of BIM based cost
estimating or take-off software tools that fully adopt the
UK practices and standards of measurement.
Attempting to bridge the gap of a BIM based estimating
or take-off tool that adheres to the UK standards and
practices of measurement, this research investigates
the required information from a BIM model to support the estimating process according to the RICS standard of
NRM1 order of cost estimating and elemental cost planning.
Additionally reviews the technical requirement for BIM
based software tools to support NRM1. A comprehensive
literature review, a series of in-depth interviews with BIM
experts, and a workshop with a group of quantity surveyors,
on BIM in general; application of BIM in quantity surveying
functions, estimating and cost planning in particular;
standards for cost estimating and cost planning laid the
foundation of this research. The information requirement
outlined in this report provides overall guidance for the
quantity surveyors on the types of measurements a BIM
model can generate, and the ways of utilising the quantity
information in a BIM model in cost estimating and planning.
The review of technical requirements enables the quantity
surveyors to select the most appropriate BIM based cost
estimating tool for a specific scenario from a number
of those available. The research reviews the four most
well known tools in the UK market, namely, Solibri model
checker, Autodesk QTO, CostX and Causeway BIMmeasure
based on a set of criteria which is relevant to the NRM1 cost estimating and cost planning exercise.
The study reveals it is essential for the project team to agree on a set of requirements which is defined from the viewpoint of cost estimating and planning to enable the quantity surveyor to use BIM more effectively. Having formed the basis of such information requirements it suggests that the efficiency and accuracy of cost estimating and planning processes can be significantly improved by supporting BIM models with NRM 1 requirements.


Wu, S., Ginige, K., Wood, G., & Jong, S. (2014). How can Building Information Modelling (BIM) support the New Rules of Measurement (NRM1)

Report Type Project Report
Publication Date Jan 1, 2014
Deposit Date Jun 17, 2015
Publisher URL