Location is a Key Component


FOR SCOTT PREBLE, LOCATION HAS ALWAYS BEEN PART OF his career. He started his career as an aerospace engineer for Boeing. When the aerospace industry contracted, he moved on to Wall Street and brought aerospace techniques, such as TCP/IP across satellite to their transaction systems. He became chief technology architect for Citibank Lending Divisions, and grew into the roles of CIO and CTO within various industries. He was CTO of FritoLay, CTO for MGM Mirage Casinos, and Divisional CIO for LPS Default Systems, which builds software for the mortgage industry. Today he is CTO for Open Technologies Solutions, focusing on scale and higher SLA’s including digital banking strategies. Behind the scenes in his technology career has been location, which has enabled him to be creative and manage risk at the same time.

By correlating location data with assets and people, Scott Preble has built software systems and purchased location- based solutions that have saved the mortgage industry $1 million dollars a year in fines; gave Frito Lay detailed location tracking for logistical planning, delivery of fresh products and truck fleet maintenance; and increased casinos revenues by targeting VIPs and more.

Many CIOs may not see location as part of their responsibilities, especially in organizations where a GIS department already exists. However, as IOT (Internet of Things) comes barreling down the pike, at a much faster pace than expected, CIOs will have to embrace location. You can’t do IOT without location. IOT by definition is location-aware devices relaying information across a sensor web of connected devices, and smart everything designed to improve efficiency, productivity, and information.

While many CIOs may not have the geospatial background of Scott Preble, they will not need it. But the CIO of the future will by default become a Location Intelligence Officer. Once you get hooked on location intelligence, you will never look back because it will not only inspire you to think differently, it will reveal information you never thought possible.


LBx What is the profile of a good CIO?

Preble CIOs need to be somewhat schizophrenic. They have to balance minimizing risk, hitting product rollout and financial targets, while still being visionary. CIOs need to think out of the box to be a
differentiator in the marketplace. I have combined the principles of “imagineering” that I learned at Boeing, with the risk management principles of security, low-risk high-delity trading on Wall Street. You can’t always be creative and run a stable financial business, but you can introduce new solutions that will be game changers for your business and still meet your risk management goals.

LBx What has your background in geospatial and location-based technologies and solutions taught you?

Preble Out of college, my first engineering job was working on cruise missiles. You can’t fly cruise missiles and avoid them being shot down without a map or route for the missile or understanding the GPS-guided sensors. At Frito Lay, we built a tracking system for our truck drivers in order to improve productivity. You can’t track assets without location.
At MGM, we focused on customer experience and ensuring that VIPs stayed on MGM properties while in Las Vegas. You can’t understand or in uence customer behavior without location. At LPS, we focused on managing a massive footprint of real estate properties across the country. You can’t e ectively manage and control costs related to assets without understanding the weather impact; and you can’t understand weather impact without location.

LBx How can CIOs without the benefit of your background in geospatial and location embrace
location-based solutions?

Preble First it is important to recognize that if you have assets in a company, you want to be able to track them. Depending on the industry, you will want to track them to eek out pennies that can add up to millions of dollars in cost savings, to di erentiate yourself in the marketplace, to grow top line revenue, or to manage risk. There are many location-based solutions on the market today from consumer applications to enterprise-ready. Many companies are building their own in-house applications with the various tools available. I have done both, and I have worked with many different suppliers.
I am really encouraged by one particular company, Earthvisionz, which has gured out a solution that is easy to implement and risk-free. Most importantly, their solution integrates assets with location data such as weather. If you have a lot of assets, you have a lot of data and a lot of costs; when you connect location to the asset data, it makes a big di erence. Companies like Earthvisionz that make the solution simple—with no real development, where they house the data, and you track and view the data—make it easy for CIOs to simultaneously be creative and manage risk. Every CIO should check out plug-and-play solutions to see what is possible.