ECCE offers a full range of GIS consulting services in light of the larger IT environment. Our services are focused on applying GIS technology in conjunction with appropriate strategic planning, implementation, and application development methodologies resulting in enhanced capabilities for decision making and locational development strategies. ECCE's consultants follow a structured organized approach for initiating, deploying and implementing GIS projects. They have worked on GIS projects, from concept to completion, and are aware of the intricacies, complexities and problems that face such endeavors. They are keen to ensure that, clients' requirements and expectations are met in a timely manner with optimal price/performance ratios. The GIS consulting services cover projects based on any combination of desktop, Intranet, Extranet, Internet and other media of interaction
ECCE 's GIS consulting services focus on the responsible implementation and application of GIS technology. ECCE 's GIS services include:

a) GIS Situational Assessment
A typical situational assessment is undertaken to review existing operations within an organization for the distinct purpose of identifying issues and concerns related to the cost effective implementation of GIS technology. Because of the high cost in implementing GIS technology it is imperative that all operational and technical issues be identified prior to a committed investment. The situational assessment summarizes the existing operational environment, evaluates the potential opportunities for implementation and identifies critical success factors.

b) GIS User Needs Analysis
Geographic information systems are successful when they comprehensively and consistently meet the needs of users. The development of a successful GIS depends on well defined user requirements. The user needs analysis reviews existing operations and identifies a comprehensive list of users, the prioritization of information products, the prioritization of data required to satisfy information products, and a definition of system requirements, or functional capabilities. The user needs analysis should provide the foundation for evaluating different GIS software offerings. The key element of the user needs analysis is the translation of user needs into GIS functional capabilities.

c) GIS Software Assessment and Acquisition
The software assessment involves an evaluation of GIS software alternatives based on the results of a comprehensive user needs analysis. It is critical that user needs and functional requirements have been defined. A major pitfall in implementing GIS has been the failure to match GIS capabilities with user needs. The high cost of GIS software necessitates that user needs be understood prior to a software assessment.
The software assessment focuses on rating GIS capabilities based on a weighted prioritization of specific functions. However, the software assessment must also consider secondary technical factors, such as: user interface, documentation, training, system management and security, etc., as well as operating system characteristics, such as DBMS interfaces, supported computing environments, software modularity, programming interfaces, and supported data structures. All these components combine to provide a sound and objective foundation for selecting the appropriate GIS software offering.

Our close relationships with the leading GIS software vendors, in the local and international markets, allows us to provide cost effective and fully supported options to satisfy the software acquisition process.

d) GIS Implementation Planning
After selecting an appropriate software option, it is necessary to develop a detailed implementation plan to direct the acquisition process, start up, and the operational phases of implementation. Typically the implementation plan includes a strategy to address critical issues such as database design, data conversion, and the definition of realistic milestones and schedules. The implementation plan is essential for the successful implementation of GIS technology. Our GIS experts have the qualifications, experience, and knowledge to provide guidance, advice and support for the development of successful implementation plans that suits the client's environment, requirements and constraints.

e) GIS Operational Support
ECCE also provides on-going support services for operational implementation. These services focus on addressing immediate implementation issues that will minimize start up time and result in a cost effective application of GIS technology.

f) GIS Database Design and Data Management Methodologies
Database design is based on well understood user requirements. Since the cost of building and maintaining the GIS database is typically 80% of the total GIS investment it is critical that proven methods of data modeling are utilized during the database design stage of implementation. This includes conventional relational database design; modern object oriented database design; data warehousing techniques; software engineering techniques; as well as spatial database design. The integration of conventional methods of database normalization, modern methods of object oriented database design are supplemented with spatial data issues of data accuracy, data quality guidelines, and seamless spatial access requirements. The database design process is absolutely the most critical phase of GIS implementation. The GIS data architecture provides the foundation for future capabilities, application development, and the generation of information products.

g) GIS Database Compilation
This includes the requirements and issues related to the compilation of new data and the conversion of existing digital and non-digital data. Most GIS software provides several different functional routes to get to a destination and selecting the optimum and most cost effective one is often difficult. The integration of secondary and primary data sources is often a concern. Issues such as appropriate map projections, data structures and formats, data precision and accuracy standards, relevant map scales, edge matching concerns, and feature topology must also be considered.

h) GIS Systems Integration
GIS is a long term investment that matures over time. The substantial investment required for GIS technology and the accompanying data dictates that the technology be integrated in a corporate manner with existing information systems of the organization. Failure to consider the implications of GIS technology on existing information systems and procedures will result in costly failure. ECCE provides full systems integration services to ensure that, where appropriate, an Enterprise GIS can be developed in a successful manner.

Due to our considerable experience with industry leading GIS software offerings; ECCE is well positioned to provide these services in a manner that will satisfy user's needs and improve operating efficiency. The high cost of implementing and operating a GIS environment necessitates that clients get the most out of their GIS infrastructure for it to be cost effective.

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