New resources: Esri & The Science of Where podcast & WhereNext magazine

November 1, 2017 Joy Chan

Are you looking for ideas on how to transform your business with the power of location intelligence? Check out Esri & The Science of Where podcast and WhereNext magazine. These new resources for executives in business and government provide valuable insight on how you can use location-based data for better decision-making.

Esri & The Science of Where podcast

“It used to be about delivery and now it really is about logistics,” says Jack Levis, senior director of process management, describing how technology has changed the work at United Parcel Service (UPS).

On the new podcast, Esri & The Science of Where, top-tier business leaders like Levis talk about why digital maps and analytics are now essential to their businesses.

By using more accurate maps, UPS is saving millions of dollars. In fact, Levis says if UPS can save 1 mile a day on each of their trucks, that’s annual savings of $50 million a year.

Esri & The Science of Where showcases the ways location information—relating to business assets, customer analytics, labour force, demographic trends, consumer behaviours and more—drives faster, more effective decision-making.

If you’re a decision-maker in government or business, this podcast provides valuable insight on how you can gain location intelligence as more data becomes available to you.

The Esri & The Science of Where podcast is available on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, Android, tunein, blubrry and RSS. Subscribe to the podcast

WhereNext magazine

Using geographic information systems (GIS) to reveal societal trends and analytics is the focus of WhereNext magazine. In the article, “Commerce as a Crime Deterrent”, two professors talk about what they learned using GIS to track the rise in local crime when a retail outlet closes. Tom Y. Chang and Mireille Jacobson first examined the closures of medical marijuana dispensaries, which have often been stereotyped as magnets for criminals.

However, the researchers found otherwise: when a dispensary closed, they saw a significant crime increase in the blocks immediately surrounding it, compared to the blocks around dispensaries which remained open.

The same was true for restaurants. Crime increased when a restaurant closed. But as they wrote in their article for the Harvard Business Review, “crime disappeared as soon as the restaurant reopened”.

So, how does knowing facts like these help your business?

Many executives have “fallen into the trap of thinking that digital transformation begins in the IT department, rather than in the boardroom,” writes Chris Chiappinelli, editor of WhereNext, in his article,  “Digital Transformation: A Walk-Through Guide”. He argues that developing a digital strategy is an essential first step. Without that, there will be no big return on investment. Developing a strategy is also a chance to rethink business and customer relationships. 

Once a digital strategy is determined, Chiappinelli says the following activities are a reliable path to digital transformation—formed by a combination of process change and technology support.

  • Digitize location information

  • Leverage the computing power of the cloud

  • Perform advanced analytics

  • Deploy mobile data collection

He then presents an example for each of these steps, including this one for advanced analytics.

Perform Advanced Analytics on Big Data

Challenge: One of the largest banks in the US sought to identify prime locations for its branches and services throughout the country. Planners needed to weigh a vast assortment of data, but with the information scattered across spreadsheets, analysis was limited and time-consuming.

Action: The bank digitized a key component of its branch-planning process, allowing executives to analyze powerful streams of big data on market trends and customer needs in various locations.

Outcome: With that digital information portrayed intuitively on a map, executives now have the insight they need to establish operations in the most profitable locations, where they will best serve customer need.

If you’d like to read more about advanced analytics, digital transformation, the Internet of Things and the business impact of location intelligence, subscribe to WhereNext.

About the Author

Joy Chan

Joy Chan is the Marketing Communications Manager for Esri Canada. She is passionate about sharing how GIS makes the world sustainable and how you don’t need to be a cartographer to make great maps. Joy has a Master of Science degree in Integrated Marketing Communications and has over 15 years’ international experience in the technology industry.

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