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:
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.
“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.
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 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.
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.