Thanks to all our 2016 members who completed their membership and answered a few quick questions. The Board of Carolina URISA was curious about the current focus of our professional organization and its role in offering training (for all levels of GIS staff) to the Carolinas.
Among all the other organizations someone could become a member of, is providing training and networking part of our niche? Does the online training (included with membership) and in-person workshop (discount for members) provide value to the GIS community?
Also, the Board was interested in knowing what role the members take within their organizations, specifically with GIS program management. For those in the program management role, what process is taken to review and improve GIS operations?
What did we learn from the survey?
Training: It appears most of our membership gets some training as needed, while others maintain a formal training plan for staff. What would be the best practice? We would like to hear your thoughts!
We would like to encourage you to think about your projects for the next year, perhaps evaluate what software you support and have limited knowledge about or could be deployed in your organization to further your GIS initiatives. Many organizations begin their budget planning at the beginning of the year. Have a list of training and conferences (along with the cost, including travel) ready to propose. If you don’t ask for funding, you will never get!
We hope you will consider GIS-Pro 2017, it is in Jacksonville, FL this year. Also, consider the URISA Leadership Academy to learn how to be a leader in GIS and take your skills to the next level. Finally, as a member benefit we offer online training through GeoSpatial Training Services.
GIS Program Management: The majority of our membership appears to be in some position of decision making or coordination of GIS program activities. It’s possible some of those who answered no, also assist in coordinating, but perhaps are not aware that they do. How many of us in program management operate our GIS at 100% effectively and efficiently? Does your GIS operation utilize GIS best practices? We would like to hear from you!
URISA launched the GIS Capability and Maturity Model in 2013 as a tool to self-assess your GIS program. If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it! This tool is free on the URISA website for individual self-assessment; however, the assessment service allows you to compare your program to an average of others similar to your agency.
Think of it like a checklist to help form your goals and initiatives for the next year and beyond. Review as the program manager or take the team approach to facilitate some enlightening conversation. For someone not in the program management role, completing the GISCMM may allow you to improve your knowledge of how the organization uses GIS and give you an edge in thinking about the program and furthering your career.
Check out the URISA GIS Management Institute to learn more about the free GISCMM and the Assessment Service subscription. ( Visit URISA GMI )
What can Carolina URISA do for you in 2017 (and beyond)?
We appreciate hearing from you, thanks to all who left comments. (No, afraid we don’t mow lawns.) Can CURISA help broadcast to its members some advisory opportunities to review white papers? Continue to support the NC GIS conference, provide Geospatial Training courses online, and other free and low cost training with networking opportunities. Provide a course on the GISP exam prep or the process of getting your GISP. What would you like to help CURISA do for your GIS community in 2017?