5 Ways Companies Work With Geospatial Engineers

In any business, prospective clients – and even sometimes puzzled friends and family – regularly ask: “What do you do?” Hopefully the “elevator speech” that you worked for weeks or months on hits all the right notes with the person you’re speaking with and they reply:

“Awesome! I think we need THAT!”

Meanwhile, back here on earth, the reality is: that usually doesn’t happen. In our world, we’re often met with something like this:

“We already do engineering.”

It’s unfortunate when that’s the end of the conversation because there are many ways that Geospatial Engineers can support companies. Here are 5 examples:

The “Engineer’s Engineer”

This is not to be mistaken for being a helper or an assistant. This is:

Engineers with one skillset working in partnership with Engineers who possess another skillset to accomplish something bigger than could be accomplished before.

In this business, the key to success is a desire to solve problems, and this is the perfect storm for being able to do so in a huge and meaningful way.

Sometimes on projects certain requirements are needed. Examples include a P.E. stamp, a certain drawing or plan and profile. That’s where the Engineer’s Engineer can come in and bring value. They can provide that needed service and allow you to see the process in action. They can even guide you through the process which can clear a path for you to do what they do on your own some day. Think of it as more of a true consulting effort versus simply getting a certain task completed to get you to the next step in the process.

The “Staff Engineer”

“Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?”

“That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,” said the Cat.

“I don’t much care where—” said Alice.

“Then it doesn’t matter which way you go,” said the Cat.

Similar to this exchange in the Alice In Wonderland story, it’s very easy to get to a point in a construction or Network owner business when you really don’t know the next steps. That’s not a signal of anything except HERE WE GROW, and that’s a really exciting thing for a telecom business.

In this scenario, a staff engineer can be a perfect fit on a project basis rather than long term. The need may change and the business may decide to grow an in-house engineering team down the road, but even that falls into the “How do we do that?” category (more on that later). Working with Engineering consultants allows a business to bring an already trained up A team to the party to dive in and be effective almost immediately.

The “Front End Engineer”

We see this scenario a lot with Network owners: up until this point the Network owner has been able to handle everything on their own. Then they reach a point where the next steps are getting too big to handle on their own. Not because they can’t as in they don’t know how but because they can’t  as in the projects are getting too big and the timelines quite short. In this case, retaining a Geospatial Engineer can allow for the up front Engineering needs to be cared for using GIS tools to keep things moving along quickly, and once the project is ready to go to construction the Network owner can step back in and manages the project themselves as they are accustomed to doing. Of course, this sounds like the dream scenario, and often it’s a great solution. On the other hand, there are times when having the added expense of a Staff Engineer is the better route long term.

“The Engineering Consultant Part 1”

The solutions provided by a Geospatial Engineering Consulting firm are highly scalable and can also help with the ebbs and flows of a business. Leveraging data allows a GIS consultant to get a quicker snapshot of a much larger project that is rooted in good data points to help clients make a more informed and ultimately better decisions. When we partner with businesses in this way, WE (everyone involved) can help drive efficiencies into the business as well. Examples include automating hand-offs, simplifying reports and getting the entire team working off the same “sheet of music”. Our “job” in this case is to help you simplify the complex.

“The Engineering Consultant Part 2”

We mentioned earlier that there are things our teams do for clients that we eventually teach our clients to do on their own. While not the norm (due to the costs associated with it), there are extreme instances when a company decides to build out their own in-house engineering department. Having built our firm from ground zero, we make sure clients considering this path understand how much time and resources the endeavor will require, and in the end there are times when this significant investment is the best next step. In these situations, an experienced Engineering Consultant can guide clients through everything that needs to happen from start up to ongoing. It’s a herculean effort and the right fit for a small number of companies. But when it is the logical next step, we’re equipped to guide companies through the process.

Now do you see why it’s so unfortunate when a conversation ends with “We already do engineering.”? There are so many different ways that Engineering Consulting firms can work together. There is so much work to be done in the marketplace now and in the future and it’s our sincere belief that the more companies work in partnership, the more opportunity there is for everyone which ultimately helps the consumer.

Have additional questions about Geospatial Engineering? Contact us and we’ll let you know what might be the best next step based on your vision and goals.

Using Dashboards Effectively In Telephony

While telephony has been around for a long time, technology has become the game changer that has moved the industry forward. For the provider, this is true at the nuts and bolts materials level of fiber optics and it’s also true at the planning, implementation, and management level of the industry. The team at our sister company Millennium assists customers with the materials to make fiber projects tick and our team at Millennium Geospatial works with companies to plan, implement, and manage fiber projects.

We find that most companies that we work with need/should have a Dashboard to help them manage projects as well as overall efficiencies within their company. Once organizations understand what a Dashboard is and what it can do, they usually agree and invest in a Dashboard for their projects.

What is a Dashboard?

By now, everyone on the planet has likely interacted with a Dashboard. The COVID19 Dashboard built and maintained by Johns Hopkins University is one of the most widely known and used Dashboard in existence at this time. We all are able to see rates of infection at any given time and in any given place using that map. The data is easy to see and use and it updates in real-time using geospatial data.

Who uses a Dashboard?

Anyone who needs/wants to measure something that involves geographic locations can benefit from having and using a Dashboard to track data. We find that there are 3 types of Dashboards that are the most useful to companies:

Operational

An operational Dashboard will tell you what’s happening in real time. The Johns Hopkins Dashboard is an example of this. We use Dashboard technology on this very website to update the map documenting our past projects so that visitors can interact with the data and assess our experience in a very hands on way before they even have to reach out and connect with us. Operational Dashboards are utilized in areas of the business where day-to-day monitoring is needed.

Strategic

A strategic Dashboard contains less nitty gritty detail and is ideal for members of an organization that want to review high level data. If decision makers in an organization need/want to project where to focus resources in the future, a strategic Dashboard can help present the data in a way that makes high level decision making more effective.

Analytical

An analytical Dashboard creates an environment that allows users to dig deeper into data. While productivity is something that can be viewed as a high level, using an analytical Dashboard allows a user to dig into crew productivity, supervisor productivity, daily production, yearly production and more.

Can’t decide which kind of Dashboard to go with? No worries – data can be tabbed within the Dashboard framework so that every department can see what the need to see in the way they need/want to see it.

How long does a Dashboard last?

Geospatial data is fluid and a Dashboard can continue to be effective for as long as data is being fed into it. Dashboards are the business tool gift that truly keeps on giving!

Interested in seeing this information as a story map? Click here and check it out!

Every Dashboard is built custom to the needs of the team(s) that will be using it. If you’re interested in discovering how a Dashboard can help your team, please be in touch!