What’s the logic for CLASSIFYING BIM DATA?

Classifying data means structuring it in an agreed way so that different actors can easily find what they need and understand it. A classification system is like a common language. In BIM, classification lets people, software and machines share and use building information efficiently and accurately.

The importance of classification is growing as teams for building projects get more complex and international, and as projects themselves generate more and more data which is then relied on to automate processes, make better decisions and operate devices.

Different classification systems have been developed for different types of BIM data and actors, and for different geographic areas and situations. Below are some examples.

Uniclass 2015

Uniclass 2015 is a unified classification for the UK industry covering all construction sectors.


The OmniClass Construction Classification System (usually referred to as OmniClass™ or OCCS) is a classification system for the construction industry in North America. It follows the international framework set out in ISO 12006-2.


MasterFormat is a standard for organizing specifications and other written information for building projects in the U.S. and Canada. It is a product of the Construction Specifications Institute (CSI) and Construction Specifications Canada (CSC).


UniFormat, a product of CSI and CSC, is a standard for classifying building specifications, cost estimating, and cost analysis in the U.S. and Canada.


CoClass is a Swedish classification system for the built environment.


CCS is a Danish classification system for the built environment.

TALO 2000

TALO 2000 is a Finnish classification system.

NS 3451 & TFM

These are Norwegian classification systems.

NS 3451TFM

Industry Foundation Classes

Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) are the buildingSMART data model standard.

buildingSMART Data Dictionary

The buildingSMART Data Dictionary (bSDD) is a library of objects and their attributes.


The international standard for uniform classification of technical products.

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