The increasing adoption of cloud-based software has helped many contractors create, share, and utilize project data with project stakeholder, ushering in a new era of collaboration and construction data. The number of construction apps is also rapidly growing. Contractors are now regularly juggling a variety of solution-specific apps on the jobsite, with new ones coming out all the time.
For project teams focused on the day-to-day of getting the job done, the choices can be overwhelming. Testing, vetting, learning, and adopting new technologies can become a job all on its own. Also, using different systems creates disconnected project data, that spreads throughout multiple silos, limiting its effectiveness.
This has led to the rise of the construction app ecosystem. Autodesk’s BIM 360 platform seeks to solve these problems by delivering an open platform to connect all of your construction data and workflows throughout the entire project lifecycle, from design, preconstruction, and execution to handover and facility management.
How Does the BIM 360 Ecosystem Work?
The BIM 360 integration ecosystem makes it easier for contractors to harness the power of connected construction data.
There are two sides to integrations with Autodesk’s BIM 360 platform. For one, customers can build their own integrations using Autodesk’s BIM 360 APIs and Forge development tools. Autodesk BIM 360 applications are built on Autodesk’s Forge cloud development platform, which enables customers and partners to build with the same BIM 360 APIs powering BIM 360 applications. Whether you are interested in automating your construction workflows, reducing manual data entry or building a custom app, BIM 360 can support your integration needs with secure access to your account, project and construction data via the API. Customers have used the BIM 360 API to do things such as push data from ERP systems directly into BIM 360 Account Admin or to build custom dashboards using BIM 360-connected data.
The BIM 360 ecosystem also partners with third-party app providers so that their apps can integrate with BIM 360. BIM 360 has over 67 integration partners (and counting) that help foster productivity in the office and on the jobsite. Autodesk vets and validates applications, so you have a place to find technology solutions that meet your unique construction needs. These solutions also share data with the BIM 360 platform, making it easier for contractors to harness the power of connected data to better understand and make decisions on a given project.
Why Should AEC Professionals Care?
A project team can collaborate and communicate more easily, reducing risks in areas such as safety and cost.
A construction app ecosystem such as BIM 360 connects project data through the cloud in real-time throughout every project stage, leading to more predictable and profitable outcomes. As an open platform, it allows the connection and sharing of data from other software applications into one single source of truth for project data. This enables transparency and better decision-making, with all users knowing the status of the project at every stage. It also allows the entire project team to collaborate and communicate more easily, reducing risks in areas such as quality, safety, schedule, and cost.
By digitizing workflows, collecting and centralizing data, and integrating technologies, contractors can take advantage of emerging technologies such as AI, visualizations, and real-time project metrics. Contractors can harness the power of machine learning and AI applied to their project data with BIM 360’s Insight module. As data silos are broken down, artificial intelligence will play a greater role in how buildings are designed, constructed and operated, and new solutions will be identified, developed, and refined.
Contractors also can take advantage of data analytics to drive better outcomes. By connecting project operations data, through platforms like Rhumbix, to financial performance, teams can get greater insight into project performance. This is why we are proud to announce a new integration between BIM 360 and Rhumbix.
The BIM 360 Ecosystem Welcomes Rhumbix
Rhumbix's time & materials tracking will be integrated with BIM 360's cost management tool.
The upcoming integration of Rhumbix and the BIM 360 Cost Management module is an exciting addition to the BIM 360 ecosystem. Rhumbix's Time & Materials Tracking software will be integrated with Cost Management to help general contractors and subcontractors better manage their T&M (aka “field change order”) process via a cloud-based paperless solution for reporting, tracking, and approving T&M tags. Autodesk users will be able to see the details involved for T&M tags inside of the Potential Change Order (PCO) module of the BIM 360 Cost Management tool. This allows for transparency and understanding of what the true costs of a PCO are.
Field-level data collection such as that done by Rhumbix becomes even more valuable when multiple systems can utilize this data. With integrations such as these, contractors can begin to experience the true benefits of digitization by connecting and unlocking the power of their data. You can browse our integrations here.