Capturing Reality: A Laser Focused Investment Reaps Big Rewards
Schemmer Associates, a full-service architectural, engineering and construction firm is best known for its comprehensive scope of service that ranges from design to construction across many market segments in the public and private sectors. Founded in 1959, we are grounded in our past but remain fully committed to the future. Located in four states and eight offices throughout the Midwest, Schemmer is providing services to clients from coast-to-coast and border-to-border across the United States. The need to collect as-built conditions quickly and more accurately caught the attention of Joshua Murphy, the BIM/CADD Manager at Schemmer Associates.
The idea to add scanning to the Schemmer workflow initially came about as a potential benefit to one of its primary services -- space utilization assessments, where knowledge of as-built conditions is essential, using Autodesk solutions. In recent years, the company had been involved with more than 40 of these assessments, so streamlining the process of obtaining as-builts quickly, was the primary goal with the objective being to reduce labor hours while increasing assessment output.
Murphy had seen the Leica BLK360 laser scanner while attending Autodesk University previously, and inquired with U.S. CAD about the potential value of adding this to support their project needs. "As soon as we had that data from the scanner in our 3D modeling software and saw the level of detail and accuracy of the point cloud, we knew that the technology could be an advantage over traditional site visit recording methods," Murphy says. "Now we just needed to demonstrate a clear ROI." To build buy-in, Schemmer rented the Leica BLK360 scanner for a year as a way to evaluate the benefits. "The timing worked well as we had just won a big project that would require documenting existing conditions over a span of months. The BLK360 was the perfect tool for this effort and allowed us to develop accurate real-time and cost-saving numbers," Murphy says.
"Turns out, the user experience was the easiest to win," says Murphy. "As soon as our team started modeling, they saw the advantage. It's so much faster than any other methodology. It's so much faster to model off of a point cloud- a 100 times better than traditional methods," he adds. "Our design team loves it." After a full year of evaluation, Schemmer purchased the RTC360. Over the last two years, the scan-to-BIM workflow has become an integral part of nearly every project that includes as-built conditions. Murphy adds, "We do a lot of scanning at risk in advance of project bids. Often a client will come back to us even when we didn't win the initial job. So we're finding it's a great way to build relationships."
"Scanning has become such an integral part of our toolbox, that our goal is to have someone in every department able to use it. Right now, we need it so much that we often look to our U.S. CAD partners to support scanning on projects" says Murphy. Moving forward, he would also like to take advantage of augmented reality. Murphy concludes, "I see the day very soon when we'll be able to view a model or point cloud in the field using AR goggles to verify work completed or resolve issues. For now, the scanner and scan-to-BIM workflow has paid for itself over and over, with the help of Autodesk solutions."
- BIM Collaborate
- Assessment of Needs
- Pipeline Development
- Process Automation
- Strategy & Planning
- Workflow Optimization
- Optimize Accelerator Delivery
- 3D Modeling
- 3D Scanning