The Path Forward

Moving Forward on Digital Infrastructure

What are the decisions your community needs to make?

SNG has over 20 years of experience with digital transformation in communities and regions, rural and urban, across North America. We offer a pragmatic alternative to longer and more costly broadband feasibility studies. We approach digital infrastructure as would a government financial officer with a holistic and longer-term approach to the costs and benefits of essential infrastructure and services for a community.

Based on our experience of what it takes to move a community or region through a digital transformation, below are questions local leaders should be asking and next steps they should be taking when considering broadband and digital infrastructure investments:

Should we invest?

Economic feasibility assessment of community benefits from investing in broadband and smart city initiatives – do benefits outweigh costs? If yes, community investments in the future can be self-financed.

Outcome: Decision to invest founded on the benefits from investing in broadband and smart city initiatives with storyline for community

Are we ready?

Community Readiness – are local stakeholders bought-in and is the community ready to take-on broadband and smart city initiatives? If not, what are the gaps that need to be addressed?

Outcome: Assessment of readiness and buy-in of local stakeholders, along with priorities for broadband and smart city initiatives

Where and how do we focus?

Current state of broadband and market demand assessment to understand how residents and businesses are connected, using and benefitting from broadband – as well as capturing demand and sign-ups for new services.

Outcome: empirical evidence base on whether residents and businesses are getting the broadband they are paying for – and the level of broadband and value-added they want and need

How do we implement?

Community infrastructure and technology assets assessment and planning – What do we have? What do we need? Uses market data from current state of broadband assessment for prioritizing and scaling implementation.

Outcome: investment cost, partner definition, system design and engineering, operations and maintenance plans, organizational structure, business planning, etc. that will provide the community the platform for digital transformation and innovation

When do we implement?

Financing for the digital infrastructure, including self-financing options (e.g. Broadband Improvement Districts) and other sources, and contracting of firms to implement.

Outcome: With benefits outweighing costs, stakeholder and community buy-in, market demand assessment, the community can make a case for moving forward and financing as a solid community investment.

How do we achieve community benefits?

Once the digital infrastructure is in place community benefits are achieved through driving adoption and utilization of the digital infrastructure and online applications by engaging local businesses, organizations and households.

Outcome: Community benefits are realized from the use of technology and digital infrastructure. With a process to drive adoption and use, the community ensures benefits will be realized and quicker pay-off of the digital infrastructure investment.

Did we achieve our goals? How do we measure outcomes? What’s next?

Once the digital infrastructure is in place and efforts made to drive utilization, how will you know that those investments are achieving the desired outcomes? With the right metrics and tools to measure outcomes and community impacts on an ongoing basis, you can track progress towards goals, as well as make necessary adjustments.

Outcome: Documented outcomes and community impacts from the digital initiatives reinforce the value of investments, solidify community buy-in, and increase the ability to optimize ongoing plans and target evolving outcomes based on empirical data.

For more information about tools that can help your community, please see how SNG analytics works for you.