The largest factor when deciding to purchase is almost always money; determining whether something’s value is worth its cost can be a both stressful and unclear task. Making the decision to invest in a GIS application can produce similar effects. Though implementing a GIS application can feel like a daunting financial investment, it often ends up saving its users money, time, and peace of mind.
For Austin Water Utility, implementing a GIS system allowed its conservation inspection team to collect data digitally. Their previous system relied on collecting information on paper and later manually entering the data into a tracking system. This method required staff to put in overtime hours and management to hire temporary personnel. With their new application, Austin Water Utility can collect and track their data digitally, allowing staff in the office to access data from the field in real time. By eliminating the need for extra man hours to input their data manually, Austin Water Utility calculated $400,000 in savings from implementing a GIS system. Not only did the company save almost half a million dollars–they also experienced other benefits, such as their staff feeling less overwhelmed with their workload.
For Austin Water Utility, the value of GIS was well worth its price, as the application ended up paying for itself (and then some!). Although not every GIS user will experience $400,000 in savings from implementing a GIS application, most users will agree that the value of GIS is well worth its cost.