BIM (Building Information Modelling) is a method that involves the production and management of digital models of the physical and functional attributes of buildings. This process also makes it easier for engineers to collect and process information about a building. The DNA of BIM is information. Ninety percent of the data in the world today has been created in the last two years alone, and our current output of data is roughly 2.5 quintillion bytes a day. However, only 0.5% of this information is being used meaningfully. BIM has the capacity to use the information we generate. By automating design optimization, BIM computer software will be able to automatically sort through thousands of possible design permutations and select the top designs that meet a project’s requirements.

The Balkan region includes countries that, according to some studies, have become the most attractive locations for outsourcing, due to the low cost of workers and a high number of highly educated, multilingual and experienced professionals. Furthermore, the region has the youngest population in Europe and is located strategically in a closer time zone to many main European countries.

Generally speaking, IT is in the highest demand on the international market, followed by graphic design and multimedia in the second place and marketing services in the third. But, when it comes to an increase in demand, during the last few years, 3D modeling and BIM services are among those that have had the fastest growth rate.

We performed detailed research on the number of freelance jobs offered on popular freelancing platforms, and discovered that there are around 1500 jobs openings monthly in the field of 3D modeling, and around 600 jobs when it comes to BIM and Revit. Frankly, these numbers are quite modest in comparison with the IT industry, but if we take a look at the number of bids posted to each of these job openings, it is easy to conclude that the overall number of people offering BIM services on these platforms is very low.

Furthermore, after researching into people who are working with BIM and promoting themselves on Freelancer and Upwork, one can conclude that the majority of these professionals are from England, USA, Sweden and other countries with a high standard of living. With that in mind, it is easier to comprehend why these services are offered at much higher prices compared to the prices workers from the Balkans are able to offer.

Finally, the most important conclusion of this investigation is in the fact that there are not enough freelancers doing BIM, especially when it comes to developing countries. It is certain that the number of job opportunities would increase with the higher number of people offering these services, since these freelancing platforms are the synonym for IT and Marketing, and there is still a lot of room for other industries to spread out, especially for BIM.

Furthermore, an increasing number of countries around the world have recently issued new regulations concerning the application of BIM to all public buildings and have set due dates for the implementation of these rules and standards. In 2017, the BIM Innovation Capability Program (BICP) created a report which is summarized in the table below.

Austria Likely to be in place 2018
Brazil Roadmap under review / consideration
Chile BIM mandated for 2020
China BIM required through the 12th national Five-Year Plan
Denmark Mandatory requirement since 2007 (extended adoption in 2011)
Dubai Mandated since 2013
Finland Senate Properties 2007

Most of the global construction firms will have to work in BIM. Therefore, an immense expansion of BIM around the globe can be expected very soon, as well as a great many new job opportunities on the worldwide market. As it usually happens, very quickly, firms will be looking to achieve high quality at the lowest prices possible. This is where the comparative advantage of the Balkan region will come to the forefront. With a lower standard of living, the expected wages of workers in developing countries are lower in comparison with those or workers living in highly developed regions, which in turn affects the rates they can offer. Accordingly, there is huge potential for the Balkans in conquering BIM market opportunities.