Electric Utility GIS Mobility Reading List

The electric utilities built their facility maps on paper for decades, then later implemented GIS. Yet after all of those years dealing with paper, utilities still clung to using paper even for their GIS. Today things have changed. Utilities are finally abandoning paper to extend their GIS onto mobile devices for use in the field.

This reading list provides a broad overview of mobile GIS applications for electric utilities. These resources are not exhaustive but will provide information about the capabilities, how they work, why they are important, and what other utilities have done.

Utilities are extending the use of GIS in the field with mobile solutions

The first place to look for a high-level view of the benefit of field apps is the one-page summary of the value proposition of GIS mobility apps. Because they are contained on one page, we call them our posters. Here are two posters dedicated to GIS for mobility. The first is the poster for operations management. Much of the operations take place outside the office. The mobility poster is for field operations, which is closely related.

The Transforming Operations Management with Location Intelligence and the Optimizing Mobile Workforces eBooks expands the content on the posters. They provide customer success stories about how mobility solutions greatly enhance crews’ performance in the field and provide feedback to managers in the office and service centers.

Field Operations Webinar Series

This three-part webinar series covers inspections, maintenance, capital work, and advanced field applications. The following are the videos for the three half-hour webinars:

Improving Inspections and Maintenance

Optimizing Capital Work

Transforming Field Work with Advanced Technologies

In addition, Esri held a two-part webinar series expanding on the above webinar series. Topics included tools for better awareness, safety and mobile GIS tools for effectively capturing information from the field that is often lost or misplaced. Here are the videos:

Tactical Awareness

Collect and Capture

Esri also held a webinar focusing on mobility, including a customer case study: Here is the link to the video:

GIS Mobility for Utilities – Take the Power of Location Anywhere

Story Maps

Building the Electric Network is a great resource for those wanting to know more about the electric grid and how GIS can model it. This Story Map provides foundational material about electric operations, GIS, and mobile solutions.

Here is an excellent example of the use of Story Maps to tell the tale of Digital Transformation at MZEC for Maintenance Field Activities.

Customer Success Stories

Read about actual customer business drivers and experiences with ArcGIS Mobility solutions.

Mobile-Friendly App Advances New Utility Services

Utility Focuses on Field Mobility

Bridging the Gap between Line Workers and Environmental Regulations

Florida Utility Creates Digital Twin of Electric Assets with Highly Accurate Field Operations

Improving Contractor Workflows with Mobile Apps

Communicating Safety with ArcGIS Field Maps

Location Intelligence Optimizes Joint Use Pole Attachments

Tohono O’odham Utility Authority Transforms Utility Services with GIS

More Detail

To learn more about what the community and Esri professionals are saying about ArcGIS Field Maps, check out the community blogs.

Additional Resources

These product pages get you started on the whole world of Mobility and GIS:

ArcGIS Field Maps

ArcGIS Navigator

ArcGIS Quick Capture

ArcGIS Survey123

Field Maps Designer

Thought Leadership Blogs

For several years, Esri and Energy Central have brought thought-provoking blogs to the broad electric utility community. Here is a sample of some of the mobility-themed blogs:

An Operations Lesson from the Spreadsheet Department

The Resiliency Sports Analogy

What is a Map to You?– Is it Cool?

Muscat Electricity Distribution Company – Getting Smarter with GIS

All I Want To Do

Stanley’s Leaning Pole

Four Things I Learned About Digital Transformation from a Stop at McDonald’s Please let me know if you have a resource you think should be included in this reading list. As always to learn more about how GIS can benefit electric utilities, click here.

About the author

Author of four books: GIS for Enhanced Electric Utility Performance, Modeling Electric Distribution with GIS, Empowering Electric and Gas Utilities with GIS and Power System Analysis by Digital Computer, he is a sought-after speaker and thought leader. His blogs have been widely read. He has lectured extensively and taught courses at Northeastern University and the University of Massachusetts. Bill holds a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Northeastern University and an M.S. in Electric Power Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Prior to joining Esri, Bill was the vice president of electric operations for a major electric and gas utility. Bill is a registered engineer in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. He currently is the Director of Electric Utility Solutions at Esri, the world's largest GIS company.


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