You might be asking yourself, what is a BIM? It’s simple really, a BIM is a Building Information Modeler. Got it? Probably not… Well, we’re here to help you understand what exactly a Building Information Modeler (BIM) does and just how important they are to your new home build. Lucky enough for us, I had the opportunity to do a little Q&A with this great group of individuals. Let’s get to know the BIMs!
Q: What led you to Veridian Homes?
RYAN: I have worked at Veridian Homes for 5 years now. While in college I worked for a residential construction company where we did everything from the ground up, but I really wanted to get into the behind-the-scenes aspect. So working as a BIM where I can draft and estimate the houses at the number one homebuilder in Wisconsin was a perfect fit.
JOE: I’ve wanted to work in residential design ever since I was 16, when I first walked through a Parade of Homes model. I’ve always had a passion in construction. My main goal was to be able to design my own house someday.
DAN: I first heard of Veridian back when I was in college. During the summers I worked for Marshall Towne Millwork, which is a sister company to Veridian Homes. After graduating college, I saw a posting for an Assistant Personal Builder position at Veridian, and I came in to interview. During the process, a BIM position came up and it turned out that would be a better position for me. So I interviewed for that position and 4.5 years later, I am loving my job.
Q: So, what does a BIM do?
JOE: The primary purpose of a BIM is to bring all the puzzle pieces from construction and design together in an architectural presentation and adapt that presentation to the customer. We’re generating a visual package which will be presented to the customer and hopefully capture their interest. Not only does this package/presentation contain the customer’s original vision and ideas and but also contains the pertinent building and accounting information for our departments to secure a successful closing.
RYAN: Everyday, we “touch” the house from the very start to the very end. It all starts with the lot fit, which shows how the home fits on the lot and what exposure that home will have. Then we get the “redlines” or marked up plans from the NHS with all your ideas and changes and from that we start drafting your home. After we have you sign off on your home plans, we then start the estimating process where we order all the parts and pieces of your new home down to every outlet, stud and doorknob. Lastly, while your home is being built if the PB’s or trades need any additional material or if any changes come through on the plans we are the ones who get those materials ordered as fast as we can.
DAN: On a daily basis, we will do a lot fit in which we place the outline of the house on the specific lot to see if it fits then see if exposure is needed. We also will do some sort of drafting daily for a house. We will estimate the house out to get all the parts and pieces. Some of the other things we do are issuing VPOs for trades that need extra supplies or extra labor cost. Price request are a daily thing to if a customer wants something more custom in their house.
Q: What do you enjoy doing most within your role?
PATRICK: I enjoy the variety of tasks I get to do between my role as an estimator and drafter. No two houses are exactly the same. We are always working to improve on process on the front end to improve the quality on the back end. As if a detail on a drawing is not correct or a purchase order it may mess the trades up and we are always trying to update those to eliminate more work when it gets to the field.
RYAN: My favorite part of being a BIM is seeing the different ideas people come up with for their unique spin on a home. No two homes are the exact same and there is always something new that is being thrown our way. There is no shortage of amazing & unique ideas people come up with.
MOWBRAY: I enjoy interacting with everyone and drafting homes.
Q: Without naming names, tell us a favorite customer or work story.
PATRICK: One of my more memorable stories was when a New Home Specialist, who was newer at the time, had me sign framed set of elevation plans for the customer for one of his first closings. I thought that was very unique and a nice added touch for both him and the customers. We also got to tour the Milwaukee parade home a few years ago for part of a day and we all thought it was impressive as a lot of work by a lot of people came together to put it together and make it a reality.
JOE: The construction department took on the BIMS in a bocce ball tournament a couple of months ago. The construction dept. figured they were going to sweep the tournament and take home the trophy. Unfortunately for them, the BIMs prevailed victorious. (See photo above.)
DAN: I have had a couple of custom homes that I really liked. One had a loft space for a second floor, which was very unique. The other was how a customer turned the back of his garage into a custom shop for himself.
Q: What do you love about working at Veridian Homes?
RYAN: I love the overall atmosphere of our company. From the open layout of our office where no one (not even the owner) has their own office it is an open door policy. The communication we have with everyone that works here makes sure that the job gets done correctly and in a timely fashion. We are all here working together to make your big step into one of homes just a little bit easier.
PATRICK: We are a culture of continuous improvement. We have processes written down and documented to make sure that we perform better than the rest of the industry. We are always encouraged to give feedback to make improvements as needed. We stick to our closing dates. We always have focused on the quality ever since I have been here and focus more on it now even though we have grown.
I am proud to tell others what I do and where I do it.
I am proud to tell others what I do and where I do it. We are a green builder and have been one even before the “go green” movement really took off. Our environmental standards and stewardship far exceed the industry standards.
MOWBRAY: I love how all of the BIMs are always looking out for one another. I really enjoy the family attitude and environment here at Veridian Homes.
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
RYAN: I love to play sports but mainly soccer. I still play soccer on a weekly basis with friends I played with in high school, as well as with some new friends I’ve made along the way. I coach Soccer in the McFarland area, which has been an eye-opening experience the last few years. Other than sports, I love to hang out at home with my wife, 7-month-old daughter and our two Australian Shepherds. There is never a dull moment in our household.
PATRICK: I like to take walks by the lake when I have free time. Work out at our fitness center. Attend a local sporting event at UW or a Madison Capitols game every so often. Watch a football game at my alma mater UW-Platteville. Go Bucky! Go Caps Go! Swing the axe, go Pioneers!
MOWBRAY: I enjoy spending time with my family.