GIS Strategic Plan and Cost-Benefit Analysis

Talk to us at the earliest stage of conceptualizing a large geospatial project. What technologies need to converge—GIS, GPS/LBS, remote sensing, ITS, comms, etc? Who are the stakeholders and collaborators? How do the financials look? The system will roll out in the future, so it must meet the technological needs of the future. And it must be financially sound if management is to support it during the period of development.

Because we work at the cutting edge of geospatial technology, we can help you plan for tomorrow's needs, today. We help you to craft a technical vision of the system at work, from generalities to specific use cases.

We also have a formal planning methodology: Structured Technical, Economic and Policy Strategy (STEPS™).

Technical Strategy

What outputs are expected of the system? What inputs and processes are required to achieve them? The inputs are data, personnel and training; the processes are system functions. Technical planning demands a comprehensive enumeration of data and system functionality, and the ability to evaluate vendor offerings to ensure that they meet the stated needs. Accuracy requirements of the outputs must be examined, and matched with the quality of the inputs. Quality directly impacts costs, and benefits.

Economic Strategy

Think of GIS as an investment in geographic data. What will the system cost, and when? What benefits will it bring, and when? Improved morale and nebulously stated productivity benefits do not justify the investment. The benefit/cost ratio should be at least 4:1. In other words, double the costs and halve the benefits and you should still come out on top.

Policy Strategy

Who are the players that are critical to the success of the project? Are certain data sets proprietary or confidential? Will the outputs be freely distributed, or should one anticipate certain restrictions, or pricing policies? What risks do you face? What are the costs of security, enforcement and marketing?

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