The Infosys Labs research blog tracks trends in technology with a focus on applied research in Information and Communication Technology (ICT)

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Location Intelligence - Part 2

 

Every organization leverage technical innovations towards better understanding of their business markets, customers and competitors with an aim to improve productivity, business performance and generate higher revenue. Location Intelligence is one such technical innovation which involves integrating and analyzing location data to build insights and take active decisons based on market & customers geography.

In continuation of the previous blog on "Location Intelligence", understanding LI into more detail.

Decisions like where to open a new supermarket to ensure its attractive enough for nearby residential suburbs, building rail routes to cover majority of population and be cost effective, delivery/logisitcs decisions by postal departments/retail stores/warehouses/manufacturing hubs to optimize the cost and increase productivity - each of these require a good understanding of geography, and location specific information.

With over 60% of the Business Data in organizations contains some or the other Geographic attribute like Address, Routes, Distances, Proximity to other business locations, regional informations/demographics etc. The ability to visualize spatial data, understand relationships between different locations can help organizations make strategic business decision process more effective, context sensitive & timely. The location based dimension to the business intelligence can open doors for organizations to explore the business growth, new opportunities/markets, expand existing profitable business locations, optimize the logistics & transportation routes and cross leverage the information within organization.

Location intelligence is not something new, we all use it daily to reach our office and back home, or during the weekend travels using our GPS or maps. What it brings to the table is the geographical context to the decision making process.Few years back we had been using hardcopy physical maps, more recently internet based maps like google, yahoo etc and today its mashups - combining various data sources and applications into a single unified view which allows us to take better decisions faster.

The diagram below depicts the simplistics model of what location Intelligence brings to the table:

 

LI.jpg

 Figure 1 - Location Intelligence Drawn

Considering the huge amount of data gathered over several years around the movement of Hurricanes, and their impact study with the increase or decrease in the products being sold in that region can give organizations better predicatability and optimization towards pushing or removing product lines for the coming year.

 

 

Storms.jpg

Figure 2 - Hurricane Patterns data visualized over past several years

 

Lets understand the key components of Location Intelligence Systems:
1. Underlying Science of GIS (Geographic Information Systems) and GIS systems
2. Data from various applications in context of organization business - Data Integration
3. Business Intelligence systems including Data Warehouses
4. People operating in the organization
5. Hardware hosting those applications
6. Advanced visualizations, maps, context sensitive dashboards

Location Intelligence resembles BI in various ways and one of the key commonality is that it's a representation of Information worth hundreds of underlying database tables. The other common factor is the objective of both is to ensure that organization leverage the benefits of timely, relevant Information towards maximizing the growth potential.

Interesting in coming years would be to see how many organizations are seriously thinking about moving onto LI bandwagon.

Comments

Good ones, Yogesh. These hold lot of business potential in the days to come. Adding customer segmentation info to the spatial intelligence is going to be even more effective. Will it lead to social engineering concepts...

This is an imminent technology and the way it's been narrated, i must say, it's insightful. I think, almost all the businesses deal with location in one form or the other. However, there are a set of businesses for which the location details is a core business information. This would include sectors like transportation and logistics, travel services, property insurance etc. These companies can be major beneficiaries of location intelligence.

Nice article Yogi. Its really worth to be location sensitive in today's compititive market specially when company's have less cash. Good to add product in potantial market by location or remove some product line.

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