Monday, December 10, 2018

Tips To Sell Your Boss On MapCast

Fill out a requisition and hope someone signs it, or...


You see the value in the service, but how to convince someone else? Leverage the rapport you have with your manager combined with the tips below to get your company on MapCast. Here's how to talk to your boss like a boss.

If The Boss Says...
  
"The way we've always done it works fine."

Change is hard, there will be resistance. Your boss probably spent a long time and lots of money on getting the current system running as well as it does and feels hesitant to throw it away. The 'ain't broke, don't fix it' strategy doesn't usually cut it when it comes to technology though.

Assuming you already use aerial imagery or maps in your research now, whether it be paid services or Google maps, remind your boss of how things were done before that. By comparison, switching to MapCast from a download and save method will be a much smoother transition than from paper to digital. Once you connect MapCast to your existing software, it will function like any other data layer in your CAD or GIS project.

Related: Imagery on Demand 

"That sounds hard. I don't have time to learn new things."

MapCast didn't reinvent the wheel. It's the same imagery from First Base Solutions you've come to rely on, now delivered via WMS for a seamless user experience, meaning you won't have to back burner your actual work while you pause to search for data; the data comes to you.

The learning curve for MapCast depends on your proficiency with your existing software to use the WMS connection options. For most, this simply involves copying and pasting a URL we provide. Format compatibility, georeferencing, projections and reference scales are handled automatically for you. Once you're connected, clicking visibility off or on like any other data layer is as complicated as it gets.

"That sounds expensive."

Focus on value over cost. Cost is easy to understand, value is a little more touchy feely. You'll make a stronger point if you come to the conversation equipped with a few facts that are specific to your job function.

An annual subscription to MapCast starts at $700, that's roughly $58/month. Is this cost equivalent to an hour or two per month of your time? Now get out a stopwatch. Track how much time you personally spend on accessing source data.
  • Searching MapWarehouse for image tiles
  • Checking online for updates to open source data and verifying quality
  • Rummaging through local file directories 
How much time and money is spent on data management?
  • Format conversions and projection issues
  • Buying and maintaining digital storage
  • Employee training
  • Installing and maintaining software and security for your collection
Once you know much of your time is spent on data access and management, you can quantify how much this activity costs the company in wages per month.  Is the figure more than $58? Before even considering the value the service's imagery brings to the project, making the switch to MapCast is already saving you money by eliminating some daily administrative tasks. The value is productivity.

"Our company isn't big enough to need tools like this."

MapCast is not out of you league. Services for teams of any size are available, ranging from solo missions to governments. Bandwidth based packages start at 500MB/month, which is the typical usage for one person using it routinely, with bandwidth options available for teams of any size. Sharing your URL allows you to share the service between as many users as you like within your bandwidth limit.

"We might use it a lot for a short time, but I don't want to commit for a year."

MapCast can still work for you if you have project based work with a busy season and a low season for data needs. Consider MapCast bandwidth like a data plan on a phone; subscribe to to the lowest level you'll consistently use per month. At times when you have a higher need for data, bandwidth will top up automatically and you pay for bandwidth overages on a month by month basis. You don't need to commit to a high service level if you expect your use to fluctuate.

"I don't see other companies using it, so why should we?"

Other companies are using it. It delivers the exact same imagery you're using, just instantaneously on demand. The differences are in the efficient work flows and lower costs on the back end of the project, not in the deliverables.


Related: WMS? TMS? WMTS? An explanation in plain English without the WTF 

"I just like the idea of having a copy of things I can keep and look at whenever I want."

Still a possibility, and a good option for sites you'll be working at long term. The imagery on MapCast can be purchased in 500m x 500m tiles from MapWarehouse to be downloaded and saved locally for this type of situation. For browsing the conditions at many sites quickly and preliminary assessments, however, MapCast is the better option.

"Maybe next year."

You may need to wait and schedule this discussion again next year before the budget is set. In the meantime, keep up tracking your time spent on data access and maintenance, plus the data costs to go in with your strongest argument for MapCast next time.


MapCast Facts

  • MapCast is a web map service (WMS). When you want to add an aerial image base layer to your CAD or GIS mapping project, you can choose MapCast as the source instead of an image file saved locally.
  • MapCast delivers unlimited access to Ontario’s largest web mapping service though an annual bandwidth-based subscription.
  •  MapCast is highly scalable. When you subscribe, you'll be provided with a unique URL that can be shared by unlimited users. There are multiple bandwidth plans to suit your individual needs.
  • MapCast is an efficient way to access current and historical Ontario imagery and elevation data, Alberta imagery, and will soon include bonus data from open sources such as roads, water features, and green spaces, styled and kept up to date for you. 
  • MapCast works with the software you already use, so there's virtually no learning curve. There is nothing to install and nothing to maintain. 

 Getting Started With MapCast (1:39)

MapCast Users Tell Us Why

Experience
First Base Solutions has been around since 2000. At that time, saving files to disk was the norm; so was buying music on CD. Offering aerial imagery through various mechanisms like streaming is a better fit for many of our customers' business models today. Our flagship store, MapWarehouse, will continue to be available for users who prefer to pick, pay, and download one image at a time.

No Learning Curve
The advantage of getting directly to work with a new tool without the need for training is an easy sell in any industry. MapCast integrates seamlessly into your workflow since it connects to virtually any desktop mapping software in use today.

Loyalty
The numbers tell the story here. In the past, MapCast was sold under the name FBSWMS, which doesn't exactly roll off the tongue. The marketing was non-existent, but we still had subscribers; the early adopters who were seeking it out. Relaunched in 2015 as MapCast with enhanced back end features for managing bandwidth, the numbers grew. MapCast users tend to renew their subscriptions or even level up to a higher service tier about 85% of the time.

Value and Convenience
The service saves time on sourcing new data, and allows access to view any and all imagery available through MapWarehouse without the commitment of paying for a specific coverage. Everything is up to date and available at your fingertips.


Still not convinced? Please contact us for support.


http://www.firstbasesolutions.com/