Eighty percent of all business data has a location component. The source of this oft-quoted figure is not known, but the statement is logical, since almost everything we do as individuals and as businesses is location-based. You live in a house that is located at a given address; you go to work in a building that has a specific location; you call on a customer who is across town, or across the country, at yet another place. A business sources widgets from a factory in one location, while inventory is stored in another. Internet traffic moves from router to router in widely disparate sites. Individuals, businesses, governmental units, organizations—all are location enabled, with communication moving among their different positions on the planet. Add this item to the list of the few things in life that are certain: death, taxes—and location.
Location-based “x” (LBx) is the recognition that all products and services are connected to location, whether they have to do with supply chain, transportation costs, distribution, proximity to the customer or suppliers, competition, or the performance of the product or service in various markets. Therefore, all business processes are location-based—you fill in the “x” for your business need: location-based inventory, location-based advertising, location-based product development, location-based supply chain management, etc.
The ability to track, monitor, and control facilities, assets, and information from a location perspective delivers real-time visibility to business processes, operations, and competitive considerations. Developing a location perspective first requires that all relevant information be geo-coded into a standard format that can then be stored and easily extracted, analyzed, and presented.
Location information already underlies every business process. Therefore, once businesses realize the power of location, the interactive intelligent map and 3D models will become the PowerPoint presentation, newspaper, and communication tools of the future.
A geospatial business paradigm is taking shape. Some call it location intelligence, geospatial business intelligence, or location advantage. We call it LBx.