PlanBEE, an award winning higher apprenticeship scheme now in its second year, is an initiative for built environment education which has been developed by a consortia of north east businesses including BIM Academy, Cundall, Ryder Architecture, Sir Robert McAlpine, Turner & Townsend and Xsite Architecture, delivered by Gateshead College and Teesside University.  The scheme, supported by the Chartered Institute of Building, the Institute of Civil Engineers and the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, takes a different approach to traditional career routes into the built environment aiming to cut across the established methods of separate professional disciplines, focusing on collaboration.


BIM Academy is a proud sponsor of the programme and starting this month, our new apprentice Cody Sherriff will be publishing a monthly blog of his experiences working alongside the consultancy, technology and research team.


Read Cody’s first instalment below:



My introduction to BIM began with Revit training, an incredibly useful two day course which gave me an insight into a building’s design process, used frequently in BIM.  Following this, I was welcomed into the BIM Academy team and given an in depth briefing of what the consultancy does both as a collective team and as individuals.


Because of BIM being an intricate process, the team gave me the opportunity to research information on BIM and the various applications within it.  As a result of this, I learned that the team specialise in consultancy and research to develop their client’s projects and the management of their plans more efficient.  BIM can be implemented to all projects, regardless of whether they are old or new.  A great example of this is the Manchester Central Library project – it holds great significance because of its innate historical aspects and the need to convert FM data into BIM data.


I gathered greater understanding of data management behind projects when I was assigned to audit a COBie spreadsheet.  This required me to analyse data to make a well informed judgement on whether it contained all the required asset information.  It was good to see the work I was doing making a difference and having an impact on working conditions.


Overall, my time so far at BIM Academy has been very productive.  I now have a good understanding of BIM and what the team here do, and have already had the opportunity to influence projects in areas such as data management.


Look out for the next instalment of my blog coming next month.