In December, we began using the Google Maps engine to visualize data in the maps section of our labor market research software. The switch to Google Maps helped paved the way for an exciting new feature that is now live in Emsi Analyst and Developer—Drive Time, an easy way to select a region based on the time it takes to drive from any city, address, intersection, business, or landmark.
The Benefits of Drive Time
Drive Time allows you perform more robust regional analyses. You can use it to pinpoint specific regions, which you can then analyze using Emsi’s county and ZIP code data. Drive Time is available for all occupation, industry, demographic, and educational program tables and reports in Analyst and Developer for US and Canadian clients.
Drive Time is a great way to determine labor shed—the supply of workers available in your region. Is a specific area around a business site losing workers or gaining workers? What’s the education level of those workers? This kind of information can be very useful in site selection talks.
Businesses like to know that a region can meet their needs before they relocate or expand. If there aren’t enough qualified workers or people in a certain demographic within easy driving distance, then it may be time to consider a new location. Having detailed demographic data that’s easily sliced by Drive Time can make site selection negotiations smoother. And that same information can be helpful to higher education institutions who want to analyze the supply or demand for a program in a custom region or determine whether they should establish a satellite campus based on drive times of potential students.
FAQs for Drive Time
Q: Where do Emsi’s drive-time estimates come from?
A: Drive times are calculated by a third-party data provider, Route360°.
Q: How is the Drive Time area calculated?
A: It uses road speed limits to determine how far someone could drive from your origin point in the given amount of time. Note that it assumes normal traffic flows.
Q: What’s the maximum time I can analyze using Drive Time?
A: Two hours.
Q: How does Drive Time know what data to include?
A: It pulls ZIP code or county data for every ZIP code or county included in the Drive Time’s area. You can exclude particular ZIPs or counties by clicking on them in the map or deselecting them from the list below the map.
Q: Does Drive Time include employment by place of residence?
A: No. Drive Time is only a means of region selection. It doesn’t change the nature of the data in any Analyst or Developer report. The industry or occupation reports still show employment by place of work (with the exception of reports using self-employment data) and demographics reports still show population by place of residence. However, we are currently developing employment by place of residence data.