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Our Insights

My Top 3 Takeaways from ESRI GeoConX 2019

October 31, 2019

By Robert Krisher
Senior GIS Consultant, POWER Engineers

GeoConX seems to get bigger every year and 2019 was no exception. The conference reported record attendance of over 1,150 GIS professionals from around the globe and 62 booths in the largest ever partner Expo. Seeing Jack Dangermond at the conference was also a pleasant surprise that highlights Esri’s commitment to the utility market. There’s a lot to cover about GeoConX, but I’ll narrow it down for now to my top three takeaways.

Utility Network

Now that several utilities have gone live with the Utility Network (including the first electric distribution implementation for Guam Power Authority, performed by POWER Engineers this summer), everyone wants to talk about it. Customers at GeoConX were eager to speak about their experience with the Utility Network. Some spoke to how it was going to benefit their operation, others gave retrospectives on implementation, and several customers talked about all the activities that they’re currently going through to prepare their organization, data, applications and integrations for the transition.

Version Viewing Web App

But it wasn’t all Utility Network at GeoConX. During the plenary, Esri demonstrated several recent advancements in the platform. While everyone had their favorites, the one that stole the show for me was their Version Viewing Web Application. Esri has always been a powerful tool for GIS staff, but there has also always been a struggle to get this information out to less-GIS-savvy users. The problem is compounded when these users need access to proposed features. The version viewing demonstration by Esri showed a tool that would allow an office or field worker to use proposed features in the GIS without first learning how to use a complex GIS application.

Problem Solving Products

The final thing that really stood out to me was the large number of customers who are leveraging ArcGIS Enterprise or ArcGIS Online and Esri’s off-the-shelf mobile products to solve problems. It seems like almost every customer I talked to was using Collector, Workforce, and/or Survey123 to meet their needs. If your business is considering buying a new piece of software to support some sort of mobile workflow, I highly encourage you to see if you can accomplish it with the software you already have!

Stay Tuned for More Insights!

Like many of you, I learned a lot during this conference. You can look forward to some new Our Insights articles here on the POWER website as I put this new-found knowledge to use.