BIM (Building Information Management, Modeling, Model) vs. EVM (Earned Value Managment) vs. TCO (Total Cost of Ownership)

BIM, EVM, TCO (or TCM – Total Cost Management) are all inter-related  

BIM is the life-cycle management of the built environment supported by digital technologies. 

TCM is effective application of professional and technical expertise to planand control resources, costs, profitability and risks. Simply stated, it is a systematic approach to managing cost throughout the life-cycle of any enterprise, program, facility, project, product, or service. This is accomplished through the application of cost engineering and cost management principles (I assert this aspect is somewhat incorrect…it not only cost engineering and cost managemt principles, but rather the application and integration multi-discipline competencies;…but hey this definition is from the AAECI, so how can I complain?). , proven methodologies and the latest technology in support of the management process. It can also be considered the sum of the practices and processes that an enterprise uses to manage the total life-cycle cost investment in its portfolio of strategic assets.  (Source: (PUBLIC REVIEW DRAFT) AACE® International Recommended Practice No. 82R-13 EARNED VALUE MANAGEMENT (EVM) OVERVIEW AND RECOMMENDED PRACTICES CONSISTENT WITH ANSI EIA-748)



EVM has two critical flaws…

1. No mention of the need for collaborative project delivery methods, examples in construction sector being IPD – Integrate Project Delivery and JOC – Job Order Contracting.  I argue that EVM is little more than an accounting number crunching exercise unless embedded within a collaborative project delivery methods.  (History BTW proves me write on this… just as in the case of ISO 9000, consultant made millions while little true improvement in fundamental business processes was gained).

2. No mention of functional as well as physical metrics.  Both are required in terms of a product, building, etc. 


So, what is needed?

A complete ontology for each sector (built infrastructure, products, etc.).  A life-cycle management strategy noting all required competencies, process, technologies, stakeholder, etc. etc.

For example…


And a rich listing of metrics.


Facility Management Process/Technology Roadmap – BIM, IPD, JOC, TCO, EVM, IWMS

If you believe Cloud Computing is “hype”, “unsecure”, “won’t be accepted as an enterprise-wide solution”…. WRONG.

Significant change is upon the AECOO (Architecture, Engineering, Construction, Operations, Owner) Sectors, and many are unprepared.

BIM… as a process (not as a 3D visualizuati0n tool) will be commonplace, in parallel with cloud computing, total cost of ownership, as well as efficient construction project delivery mechanisms such as IPD (integrated project delivery) and JOC (Job Order Contracting).

Currently used techologies and processes such as IWMS (Integrated Workplace Mangement Systems), EVM (earned value management), and LEAN are interim at best as they do not provide the level of domain-knowlege, ease-of-use, or scalability, collaboration and interoperability needed to be efficient.

IWMS systems, for example… like Maximo, TMA, Planon, etc.   have roots in legacy applications and/or specfic knowledge-domains (such as CMMS-commuterized maintenance management, or CAFM-computer-aided facilities management/space planning/utilization).  Despite attempts to provide equivalent levels of sophisitications across all requisite domains, they appear to struggle at best.

Similarly, processes sush as EVM or ” earn-valued management” are being applied to Construction Project Management.  While this may represent a step forward for many construction firms and Owners, is far too simplistic to enable facility life-cycle management and/or total cost of ownership (TCO) level decision support.

The convergence of BIM as a process and Cloud Computing provides the enabling platform for facility life-cycle mangement.   The future is now.