4D BIM applied to logistics management: implementation in the assembly of Engineer-to-order prefabricated concrete systems

Abstract The management of prefabricated building systems demands an intense exchange of information between the the plant and the construction site, in order to synchronize the production of components, logistic operations and site assembly, especially in engineer-to-order environments, in which the degree of uncertainty tends to be high. The literature suggests the use of Building Information Modeling (BIM) to facilitate the sharing of information and to support decision-making in this type of environment, as well as the application of Lean Production concepts and principles. Particularly in relation to the assembly process, 4D BIM can be used to simulate some operations, supporting production planning and control. This paper proposes a set of guidelines for using 4D BIM and Lean Production concepts and principles to support logistics management for the assembly process in engineer-to-order concrete prefabricated systems. Design Science Research was the methodological approach adopted in this investigation, which was based on an empirical study carried out in a company that delivers prefabricated concrete structures. The main contributions of this study are related to the use of BIM 4D for standardizing logistics operations, and for managing information related to system status