Bad Data Can Cost You A Lot, Even If It's Free

Your GIS is only as good as the data that goes into it.

GIS is everywhere these days, pun intended. You'll read about the advantages of using GIS to enhance your business, the value of location intelligence and visualizing your business data over a map to reveal new insights about your mobile workforce, inventory management, and customers.

Through readily available online mapping applications, GIS is accessible to just about everybody.  It can have a big payoff in terms of productivity with minimal investment in time and money.  What's not to like? GIS fits nicely into so many industries.  This idea has been explored numerous times all over the internet,

On GIScafé:
"A banker needs to understand that map visualizations will drive up her loan revenues, or expose risky investments early on. A police chief must know his maps will be quickly constructed and communicate critical details when shared during a crisis. A sales team needs to know territory maps drive accountability, and sales planning mapping tools make sales trips more efficient and more productive, helping them to achieve their goals."
On HubPages:
"GIS can revolutionize your business strategy and enable you to capitalize on things that you didn’t even know existed before. A small initial investment in a GIS system can easily lead to large profit increases and significant expenditure decreases by improving the efficiency and effectiveness of your business plan."
And lots of other bloggers out there like this topic very much, so I won't spend more time touting how great GIS is here. If you're reading this article, you're likely already up to speed.

Before jumping on the mapping bandwagon, if your company hasn't already, what we hear less about is is the actual data that goes into a GIS. Where does spatial data come from? How does it get created? How does a commercial organization acquire it? And, one very important question; how can you tell if data is reliable, or suitable for particular purpose? Bad data can cost you a lot, even if it's free. The reliability of the data going into the system affects the results that you get out of it, and those results ultimately support day to day decisions in your business.

First Base Solutions is a data provider, through our flagship service, MapWarehouse, so this is a topic we've thought a lot about. We not only resell well-vetted partner data like floodplain and parcel mapping, we also create imagery and mapping data in house, along with the tools, training and infrastructure to support its use.  If it comes from MapWarehouse, you know it's reliable quality, fast and easy to obtain, geared for business users like yourself and comes with excellent service and support.

The final question, is the data suitable for a particular purpose?  That will, of course, depend on what you plan to do with it. We welcome your questions. Even if you're not sure what to ask, just call us at (905) 477-3600 and we'll help you get started today!


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