It should come as no surprise that many construction companies encounter various challenges in terms of their application landscape. Companies that are involved in the design of buildings or tunnels, for example, use applications that demand a lot of graphics processing power from their computer systems. That’s why you still see BIM modellers dragging along heavy laptops and people paying far too much money for servers in data centres that are often not even being used. This is a shame, as well as unnecessary.
Just as with your Microsoft Office package and your email, you can now easily access all your BIM applications. The new ‘N-series’ machines on the Microsoft Azure cloud platform offer more than enough computing power to set up a BIM Cloud Workspace. Below are the three main advantages at a glance.
1. Everyone can get started right away
The first good news is that you can get started quickly with BIM Cloud Workspace. That is, you won’t be embarking on a months-long IT project. In fact, you don’t even need an IT department to get started with BIM Cloud Workspace. All workplaces are ready in the cloud and can be accessed the moment your organisation needs them. Additionally, you can also link a self-service module to your BIM Cloud Workspace. If one of your employees need a particular app, they can request access themselves. This way, you avoid losing valuable time.
Furthermore, you’ll also have access to the latest versions of all the apps in your BIM environment. Having to install the right version on each workplace is now a thing of the past.
2. You only pay for what you need
It actually makes perfect sense: only paying for what you really use. Unfortunately, this isn’t yet the case in every construction company. Ask yourself: how often do you really use all the available server capacity you purchased? This is different with BIM Cloud Workspace. If you’re launching a major new project, we can instantly scale up enough servers so you’ll immediately have enough capacity available to make your drawings and corresponding calculations. When the project ends, we can easily switch off the machines. From now on, you only pay for the capacity that your organisation actually needs.
3. Access to the right version any time, anywhere
The name kind of gives it away: BIM Cloud Workspace is located in the Microsoft Azure cloud. By storing the BIM models in the Azure cloud, you can make sure that everyone will have permanent access to the latest versions of construction drawings, for example. Because all changes are processed in the centrally stored model, you avoid circulating multiple versions of the same model.
The only thing you need is an internet connection about as fast as the connection on your mobile phone. As a result, you can also easily work from the site hut from now on. Of course, you will also want to use a suitable device to view or customise your BIM models. Theoretically, you could do this on a smartphone, although that probably isn’t the most efficient way to work. In any case, your heavy laptop is no longer needed.
And this is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to why BIM Cloud Workspace is the ideal solution for your construction company. You might also want to know a little more about cost savings and efficient collaboration within the cloud. If you have more questions than are answered in this blog, please download our white paper ‘Cutting-edge collaboration because of cloud-based BIM’.
Ruben van Gogh, Avanade Cloud Solution Architect
I focus on business propositions and service development with regard to specific business cases, such as BIM Cloud Workspace. My role is to understand the business needs of the customer and translate them into a technical solution.