Organizations Partner to Launch Data Tool to Provide Free Updates About Open Businesses Amid COVID-19
Friday, May 22, 2020

The DeKalb Chamber Partnership, DeKalb County Economic Development Partnership, Visit DeKalb, and Community Foundation DeKalb County have come together to launch Open For Business DeKalb, an online tool that enables local businesses and nonprofits across the county to communicate with customers, clients, and donors for free in real time. The tool was created by GIS Planning in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, as an interactive, mobile-responsive mapping directory for communities that ensures customers can find open restaurants, stores and services in their region at no charge.

Businesses can list themselves for free on Open For Business DeKalb (http://www.openforbusinessdekalb.com) to help residents find the businesses and services they need. Organizations and businesses can provide customized details including websites, services offered, modified hours, delivery or curbside pickup options, promotions and gift card stimulus programs. Residents can search for area businesses by categories, including grocery stores, pharmacies, banks, health facilities, hardware stores, pet stores and automotive shops, among others.

Open For Business DeKalb is a simple-to-use data tool, powered by Google Maps, using various “layers” for precise queries. Businesses and nonprofits are prompted to directly enter information on their current status and the content is verified by the organization hosting the GIS tool. GIS Planning also added free map layers, including a COVID-19 case map updated daily by the New York Times, and a job-loss vulnerability index using recent employment data from Chmura.

Open For Business DeKalb currently features over 30 organizations, helping residents discover delivery and curbside food options. That number is expected to quickly rise as businesses and nonprofits add their listings. All DeKalb County businesses and nonprofits are welcome to add themselves to the site. You do not have to be a Chamber member. Adding your business or organization takes less than 5 minutes.

DeKalb County will continue to support local businesses and nonprofits in other ways but there is nothing better than connecting residents with information that gets them the services they need.

Following the COVID-19 recovery, data experts at GIS Planning forecast continued use of the directory to promote small and medium-sized businesses across North America. Visit http://www.openforbusinessdekalb.com to access the Open For Business DeKalb site.


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