How can I become a BIM manager

Become self-employed as a BIM manager

Digitization has made rapid progress in recent years. And so it is not surprising that many business models are based on the potential of digitization. In this article, ambitious start-ups can deal with a very new business idea that is all about digitization: Become self-employed as a BIM manager. BIM stands for Building Information Modeling. This digital solution is being used more and more frequently, especially in the already stable construction industry. Basically, it is about controlling workflows and work processes on and beyond the construction site more efficiently. The BIM manager is a new and quite complex job profile that is characterized by a high degree of future orientation. In that sense, it's not an exaggeration from one Trend job to speak. In this article, the essential framework conditions for starting a business as a BIM manager are highlighted.

Digital site manager: what does a BIM manager do?

Building Information Modeling describes an innovative digital working method for planning, creating and ultimately operating various structures. In addition to houses, automotive and healthcare solutions can also be considered. The basic idea of ​​digital models in the construction sector is that everyone involved has access to relevant data and changes at all times. What has been drawn up to now is implemented with 3D models and flexible forms of communication. Changes are therefore immediately apparent, necessary consequences (e.g. adjustment of the cost calculation) can be carried out immediately. This new job description is indicative of the fact that digitization has also reached the construction industry. In the long term, the method has the potential to replace classic construction planning.

Classification in the status quo

So far it has been common for architects to create a design using CAD. These drafts are presented to everyone involved in the construction project. If there are changes due to official requirements, the drawings must be updated and made accessible to everyone again. In this respect, it quickly becomes clear why digital solutions can make such processes much more efficient. BIM (Building Information Modeling) is able to change the entire planning culture. The BIM manager is responsible for ensuring that all parties involved work together optimally. From the planning phase to the completion of a project, he holds all the strings in hand. In this respect, a BIM manager must check all 3D project data for correctness and monitor all processes. He is responsible for the infrastructure of a project in every respect and he has to design all document templates for all parties involved. Ultimately, his main task is to be able to guarantee compliance with customer goals at all times. The complexity of this new job description can also be seen in the fact that BIM managers should develop individual strategies for each project.

Setting up a business as a BIM manager: becoming self-employed in a future-oriented area with a lot of potential

  • Analysis of the initial situation: who needs BIM managers?

  • The potential for success must be visible in the business plan

  • Requirements to become self-employed as a BIM manager

  • Merit as an independent BIM manager

  • Future prospects after starting a business?

Starting point for starting a business as a BIM manager

Even if it is a very young job description, the economy is increasingly looking for BIM managers. Anyone who wants to become self-employed as a planning engineer in the construction industry has a great competitive advantage with the BIM qualification. More and more companies and potential clients are realizing that processes can be implemented more effectively with digital 3D models. If a construction project is coordinated by an experienced BIM manager, a faster and more cost-effective implementation can be expected in the truest sense of the word. In this regard, digital site managers such as the BIM Manager are increasingly needed now and in the future.

What is characteristic of the novelty of this business idea is that there is no such thing as a 'classic' apprenticeship. As an interface to all those involved in the project, he must have not only digital, but also construction-specific knowledge and experience. Industry insiders emphasize that many years of professional experience in construction projects are particularly important for BIM managers. In addition, there are now training courses and advanced training courses to qualify for this promising area. Given this, anyone who wants to become self-employed as a BIM manager has to prepare for the challenges in the long term. Many years of experience in the construction industry prove to be important for a business start-up anyway, in order to build a sustainable network. Ultimately, it has to be about standing out as a sought-after expert in this field. The educational background is not uniformly prescribed. Anything is conceivable from technical draftsmen, building technicians and engineers, as long as relevant professional experience has been gained.

Long-term prospects for starting a business

At the moment, the prerequisites are very good to become self-employed as a BIM manager. There are only a few skilled workers and most of them are employed by companies. In purely structural terms, these are good prerequisites for working flexibly or on a project basis with companies. Many architecture graduates lack the necessary experience. Therefore, the trend can be observed that many companies train such specialists themselves. In the future, it can be a solution to complete this type of training in a company as further training and then become self-employed. At a later point in time, however, the competitive situation with other independent BIM managers can be more tense. From an international perspective, there are also promising opportunities for BIM experts from Germany who are highly regarded. In this respect, international strategies can also be worked out in the business plan to be prepared.

Reveal future potential with the business plan

At the beginning, prospective start-ups need to be clear about the scope of the business idea. This has direct consequences for the planning requirements and the necessary financial resources. If you want to get started as a lone fighter, it will be difficult given the complexity. In practice, the BIM coordinator is often preceded by a second activity. In this respect, a powerful team should be indispensable, especially when it comes to international projects. A building information modeling company must then be founded that is strategically placed in the market with a view to utilizing competitive advantages. How this should look like must be set out in the business plan for BIM managers in a compact and success-oriented manner. Since setting up a company will sometimes require large sums of capital, the business plan must convince potential donors and investors.

In general, it shouldn't be difficult to sum up the advantages and potentials of digital models for efficient processes. Ultimately, it will also depend on the founder himself or his qualifications and personality. In the business plan, it is important to show that he is striving for sustainable growth with courage and a clear strategy. Incidentally, the location does not play a very important role in founding a company. Thanks to digital processes, everyone involved is always up to date and can be reached anyway. In combination with various forms of communication (video conferencing, etc.), even larger distances can be bridged without any problems. Anyway, a certain willingness to travel for important discussions or negotiations is an important prerequisite for which independent BIM managers should be open. This is especially true in the event that international projects are sought.

Define the target group and focus in the business plan

Depending on the experience and qualification background, it must be clarified in the business plan which target group the activity as an independent BIM manager should be aimed at. In terms of demand, the construction industry appears to be the most sustainable option. But the automobile industry also opens up diverse perspectives. A niche strategy is also worth considering if a very rare qualification in this area can be made available to customers. This results in convincing added value that can be brought into focus in marketing. Consideration can also be given to a advisory activity come. In this regard, construction companies and architectural offices can be advised on how the potential of Building Information Modeling can best be used and implemented. An advisory activity can also contribute to project acquisition.

Marketing and customer acquisition as an independent BIM manager

Anyone who visibly positions themselves on the market as a sought-after specialist should not have any problems winning customers or projects. The best way to get visibility in today's business world is on the Internet. And for experts in the digital world, it should be a matter of course to effectively present themselves or the company. With a view to customer and order acquisition, the focus shifts to which clients should you work with? At the moment, architecture and planning offices in particular are looking for the expertise of BIM managers. It is therefore advisable to sound out possible partnerships at an early stage in setting up a business. Experience and a large network are worth money for BIM managers, especially in the initial phase, because projects quickly emerge through contacts.

Requirements to become self-employed as a BIM manager

Since the tasks of the BIM Manager are very varied and demanding, practical and technical knowledge (especially with regard to central digital technologies) is essential for a successful business start-up. A degree in civil engineering or architecture can be helpful, but is not a mandatory requirement.Newcomers from technical professions also have good chances. Above all, the digital skills must be available right at the start of the business start-up, as these are the essential characteristics of BIM managers. Since the job description is quite new, there is still no well-established horizon of expectations. This is a great opportunity for career changers to successfully become self-employed.

Before commencing business operations, a trade must be registered. The range of services to be described depends on whether and, if so, which evidence has to be provided. Anyone setting up a company should think about the legal form and liability aspects. If the merger with other BIM managers is planned, a partnership agreement should be drawn up.

Another formal requirement for working as a BIM manager is taking out professional liability insurance. This creates effective protection against financial claims that can result from errors in work.

Salary as a BIM manager?

Information on earnings as an independent BIM manager should be treated with caution, because the job description is currently establishing itself on the market. Since it can become very important in the near future, the earning opportunities can still develop significantly upwards. Salary portals currently assume gross monthly earnings of EUR 3,500 to EUR 6,500, although annual top salaries of over EUR 100,000 appear possible depending on the industry and size of the company. Independent BIM managers have the opportunity to achieve a significantly higher monthly income with knowledge, service orientation, attractive unique selling points and a high level of workload. This assumes that the cost burden is kept within a lean range. The advantage of starting a business in an early phase of a professional field is shown in the fact that the price and salary structure is not yet frozen. Therefore, there is an opportunity to use a clever pricing policy to make your own earning potential as an independent BIM manager as attractive as possible. Competitors who follow have to stick to the established industry standards at a later point in time. Well-paid experts with excellent training are unlikely to be interested in a price competition anyway.

A look into the future ...

Anyone who hesitates to become self-employed as a BIM manager should still deal with the expected near future. Industry experts rate the opportunities for experts in Building Information Modeling as excellent. Degree programs are under construction. This fact alone shows that this is a future-proof field of activity. Since there are only a few skilled workers on the market at the moment, the prerequisites for becoming self-employed are very good. In addition, clients and companies will soon no longer be able to avoid BIM. Many European countries have already made this method mandatory for construction projects in the public sector. In the near future, digital processes in all construction and production areas can ensure that planning and monitoring processes can be standardized. It does not have to be explicitly emphasized that an enormous efficiency or business potential becomes visible here. It is important to use this as a BIM manager with a courageous and well thought-out start-up.

Summary for the business idea 'become self-employed as a BIM manager'

  1. It is a future-oriented, trend job that is based on the progress of digitization. The building and construction industry is also increasingly relying on digital technologies

  2. The advantage of digital processes is that changes are immediately understandable for everyone. This results in great efficiency potentials that are of economic interest to companies / clients

  3. BIM managers are at the interface between people and technology. They ensure that construction projects run smoothly

  4. There is no standardized training yet, skilled workers are few and far between, but companies are looking for them

  5. Independent BIM managers can hope for above-average earnings. The development cannot yet be fully foreseen as this business area is only just establishing itself. Current figures for the salary as a BIM manager indicate a mean five-digit figure per year

  6. In the near future, BIM can renew existing structures and processes in the construction sector in a more sustainable manner. This procedure is already binding for projects in the public sector.