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Geography is no longer helpful only to geographers, scientists, and academicians. You'll find geographic elements throughout databases and business applications. The central part of most business decisions we make involves some part of geographic information.

o GIS for Auditing
o GIS for Branch Siting
o GIS for Competitive Analysis
o GIS for Regulatory Compliance
o GIS for Demographic Analysis

Solutions for Banking and Insurance

o BusinessMAP
o ArcView Business Analyst
o ArcView
o MapObjects
o Internet Mapping
o ArcGIS

Geographic Information Systems (GIS)

GIS technology provides financial users with insight about their customer's purchasing habits, financial behavior, and needs for additional products or services. As a result, banks are able to target their best prospects and not misdirect marketing and advertising resources. GIS also allows financial institutions to fulfill mandatory compliance requirements.

1. GIS for Auditing

Financial institutions face a steady stream of audits from within and outside the company. GIS software helps banking and financial institutions turn statistical and geographic data into meaningful reports for auditing.

GIS-generated CRA maps protect banks against accusations of discriminator lending practices by visually displaying the bank's dispersion of accounts. Internally, the same information can be used by the bank to keep track of the bank's lending practices, accounts, and business practices.

Solutions for Auditing:

GIS Solutions for auditing include
o BusinessMAP
o ArcView
o ArcView Business Analyst
o ArcGIS

2. GIS for Branch Siting

GIS offers a better way to find the right site for a new bank branch and to examine how the location of current branches impacts performance. With a GIS, you can blend customer surveys with census data to visualize market penetration, market share, and trade areas. When markets change, GIS can help you plan exit strategies and asset disposal.

Solutions for Site Analysis:

GIS solutions for site analysis include:
o ArcView
o ArcView Business Analyst
o MapObjects
o Internet Mapping

3. GIS for Competitive Analysis

Perhaps no industry is as complex, or changes as quickly, as banking and financial services. The most successful companies in this field have entire departments dedicated to making sense of the constant stream of market information.
Leading financial institutions are increasingly using GIS to help them visualize market situations, analyze competitor information, and build realistic models that predict how changes in strategy might affect their business.

Solutions for Competitive Analysis:

GIS solutions for competitive analysis include:
o ArcView
o ArcView Business Analyst
o ArcGIS

4. GIS for Regulatory Compliance

The banking industry is required to comply with many federal regulations. GIS-generated CRA maps protect banks against accusations of discriminatory lending practices by visually displaying the bank's dispersion of accounts. Since the regulators themselves use GIS to determine the rate of compliance, a lender can be much more certain of compliance when using the same methodology.

Solutions for Regulatory Compliance:

GIS solutions for regulatory compliance include:
o ArcView
o ArcView Business Analyst

5. GIS for Demographic Analysis

Demographic analysis is the basis for customer service, site analysis, regulatory compliance, marketing, and many other business functions. Leading financial institutions are increasingly discovering the unique ability of GIS to give insight about their customer's purchasing habits, financial behavior, and needs for additional products or services.

Understanding your customers and their habits is essential to making good business decisions. Understanding the demographics of your customers also allows you to target direct mail, sales brochures, and media buys.

GIS allows you to build and map demographic profiles based on the customer information you've collected and stored in your corporate databases. GIS can help you tie it together based on a geographic component, such as ZIP Codes or addresses, so you can map patterns not readily apparent in spreadsheets or other software.

Solutions for Demographic Analysis:

GIS solutions for demographic analysis include:
o BusinessMAP
o ArcView
o ArcView Business Analyst

6. Internet and Intranet

GIS can now be used to provide World Wide Web-based mapping functionality for better customer service, such as ATM or branch locator tools to help users find the ATM or branch closest to them.

This same technology can be used to provide accessible and visual internal reporting tools for your company Intranet to better manage investment portfolios, analyze risk, predict real estate investment performance, interpret branch performance, and determine which promotions and marketing campaigns match the needs of consumers in individual trade areas.

o Real Estate
The real estate industry has always known geography matters—after all, real estate practitioners coined the phrase "location, location, location." Since location is what GIS is all about.
o GIS for Commercial Real Estate
o GIS for Residential Real Estate
o GIS for Title Companies
o GIS for Appraisers

Geographic Information System (GIS)

GIS allows the real estate practitioner to integrate a wide variety of data into one common format, a map. The presentation of a wide variety of data affecting the desirability and value of a property on one or two maps can give a far more accurate picture of the property's suitability as a first time residence, acquisition for a portfolio, or site for a retail outlet than any number of generalized market studies, photographs, and marketing text.

1. GIS for Commercial Real Estate

Geography is critically important to the commercial real estate market. A less than optimal business location can make or break a business no matter how good the service or product.

Most corporate real estate executives are acutely aware of the value of GIS in siting restaurants, stores, warehouses, and corporate offices. Some of the more important factors to consider when locating a business are proximity to suitable customers, location of potential competitors, crime rates, transportation infrastructure, local labor pool characteristics, and environmental risk factors such as floodplains, toxic sites, and others.
Solutions for Commercial Real Estate

ArcView Business Analyst was expressly designed to meet the needs of the commercial real estate industry. ArcView Business Analyst is a customized version of ArcView GIS that requires no previous knowledge of GIS. All the data and functionality required by professional commercial real estate practitioners to begin sophisticated GIS based real estate analysis is included with ArcView Business Analyst.

ArcView Business Analyst can be used with ArcView GIS extensions such as
o ArcView Spatial Analyst, which can be used to create continuous surfaces representing demand and constraints upon that demand.

o ArcView 3D Analyst, which can be used to graphically represent multiple dimensions of data such as available office square footage in relation to the surrounding labor pool.

o Internet Map Solutions allow you to publish interactive maps on the corporate Intranet or present selected applications to the public through the Internet. Many commercial real estate companies are now presenting their listings in the context of an interactive map on the Internet.

2. GIS for Residential Real Estate

Many realtors have discovered the value of showing available residential property on a map prior to actually showing the client the property.
Many times the lack of a nearby school or proximity to a busy road/highway will disqualify the property before it can be shown. Conversely, proximity to a park, greenbelt, or entertainment facilities may practically presell a property. Presentation of listings on a map is also an excellent way to gracefully introduce the subject of disclosure into the transaction.

Solutions for Residential Real Estate:

A variety of GIS software that can be used effectively by real estate brokers and agents.
o BusinessMAP, which includes a street network for the entire United States, can be used to show the location of listings as well as contacts stored in today's popular contact management software.

o Atlas GIS provides more flexibility by allowing you to add demographic data to your maps as well as other pertinent data provided in ESRI's popular shapefile format.

o ArcView GIS lets you display property photos and video along with the map, and can be used for routing to various properties. ArcView GIS also has the capability of displaying aerial and satellite imagery as backdrops for local maps. ArcView GIS is extensible via a series of extensions, so as your needs grow ArcView GIS can grow right along with you.

3. GIS for Title Companies

Title companies were among the earliest adopters of GIS in the real estate industry. Applications range from relatively simple customer care mapping services, to preliminary title searches, to the creation of GIS-based land information systems (LISs).

LIS projects may involve the conversion of an existing paper-based land registration/taxation system to an automated interactive GIS system or even the creation of GIS/LIS from historical records and aerial photogrammetry. The latter projects are of particular significance in developing countries and countries privatizing the ownership of real property.

The title industry has just begun to implement Internet-enabled GIS systems as marketing tools. These applications typically feature free public access to a county's parcel ownership data and maps with a gateway to a fee-for-services section.

In the fee portion of a site, proprietary data and reports can be ordered and/or downloaded and title searches can be initiated. Some of the more innovative applications are linked to a local real estate board or MLS provider and are of particular value to a wide range of real estate professionals, from real estate brokers to appraisers.

Another recent development in the title industry is maintenance of title information, GIS maps, and document imagery in spatially enabled RDBMSs.

Solutions for Title Companies:

Due to the title industry's wide range of applications, ESRI's low-end and high-end software and services all play an important role. The ArcExplorer data viewer can be used as a widely distributed GIS viewer for data created with ArcInfo, our professional GIS software.

Spatial Database Engine spatially enables your RDBMS, allowing you to store spatial information and maps using the same system you use to store other data. These spatial data can be viewed, mapped, or served over an Intranet or Internet using Internet Map Server (IMS) solutions.

4. GIS for Appraisers

Appraisers have many off-the-shelf tools available for establishing the current market value of subject properties. However, many of these tools lack data that can dramatically impact the value of a property.

GIS allows appraisers to map both currently listed properties as well as those recently retired from listing services, resulting in much more current data than the sales information provided by national data providers.

Applications from national sales data providers also usually require a parcel number, so if no parcel number is provided for the sale it is either lost to the system or difficult to find. In either case, the data are unavailable to the "automated" valuation programs provided with the data.

Since GIS applications can map recently sold properties based solely on their addresses, an appraiser can "see" all properties selling in a given area.

The value of property can be affected by such mitigating factors as crime rates, condition of surrounding neighborhoods, floodplain status, and proximity to nuisances such as known environmental hazard sites or noxious or loud manufacturing facilities. A "mansion" next to a waste disposal site in a floodplain is worth far less than an identical mansion fronting a greenbelt!

Solutions for Appraisers:

All of these factors can be mapped using Atlas GIS desktop mapping software or ArcView GIS desktop software. Both provide mapping capabilities; ArcView GIS also allows you to show images (such as photos or video) of a subject and show comparable properties in a presentation type setting.

Many home lenders are using GIS to review appraisals—the appraiser using the same tools has an advantage in promoting his or her services.

o Geography Matters to Retail and Commercial Business

Businesses manage a world of information about sales, customers, inventory, demographic profiles, mailing lists, and so much more. At the very core of this information is a geographic location, an address, a service boundary, a sales territory, and a delivery route that can be illustrated and interactively managed and analyzed on a map.

o Media

GIS: Report, Analyze, and Communicate

A geographic information system (GIS) combines layers of information about a place to give you a better understanding of that place. GIS software, such as ArcView, provides the data model and tools needed to store, analyze, and display information about places.
Reporters can map everything from census data to crime statistics to traffic accidents quickly and accurately. With wireless and Internet access, data can be retrieved at the scene or before the reporter even leaves the office. GIS provides journalists with more effective tools to report the news and put it in context for readers, and also manages the networks that facilitate media subscriptions and distribution.

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