GeoWorld August 2012

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I n geotechnology circles, enterprise GIS has been a hot topic for the last decade. GIS software compa- nies headline each new product release as being the perfect tool for achieving enterprisewide adoption, and most organizations' goal is to have enterprisewide adoption of the technology. Many organizations profess to have enterprisewide GIS because they've implemented some type of Internet or intranet browser that repackages GIS data into a viewing application. Other organizations believe they achieved enterprisewide GIS because they've enabled various departments with a mix of GIS tools. However, before they can truly achieve the goal of enterprisewide GIS, they must first understand what it means. There's no authoritative definition, but the following can serve as a checklist of key components for achieving enterprisewide GIS: - zation with an easy-to-use GIS toolset? - tional data (spatial and nonspatial)? organization, providing a common technology plat- form for all staff? answer questions on their own? users' jobs done? your discreet user clusters? - larly by the public? that help them with needed data or to solve prob- leaders and elected officials? yes. Because of the economic downturn, agencies are examining all facets of their bottom line. Numerous GIS implementations have been scrapped, staff have been laid off and programs dismantled. Is this because the technology is just a nicety, a non-mission- critical frill? No, it's because the technology hadn't become indispensable and wasn't interwoven into the fabric of daily operations. The chasm between saying you have enterprisewide GIS and actually having it can often be vast. Enterprise Bounty in Wayne County Organizations of all types and sizes can achieve enter- prisewide success. Wayne County, N.C., for example, has been focused on enterprisewide GIS since it formulated a strategic GIS plan six years ago. Before then, GIS existed in various departments without an organizational vision or strategy. says Chip Crumpler, GIS coordinator for Wayne County. 2O12 / WWW . GEOPLA CE . COM 19 Wayne County's enterprise GIS also enables citizens to access critical information about their community. Wayne County, N.C., provides GIS data through a variety of portals.

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