Dealing with GIS Staffing Issues
Would you ask your electrician to fix your plumbing? Probably not! People who perform GIS come from many disciplines and possess varying levels of expertise. I like to think we are very spatial people, but I believe few are experts in everything. Just because someone is in the construction business does not make them an expert in plumbing, electrical, carpentry, and other skills. Performing GIS functions does not make someone a programmer, database guru, or network administrator. Often the consumers of GIS inadvertently think we are proficient in all of these roles. As an organization grows beyond the single-user desktop application, considerations should be given to securing a staff that is knowledgeable in several key areas of GIS. This article discusses the essential roles and responsibilities commonly required to support a GIS program and offers suggestions for reducing the role conflict and staffing issues that may arise in your organization.