DeepSense launches initiative to help small businesses during COVID-19

DeepSense has launched a special initiative to support ocean-sector companies during COVID-19.

The Data Analytics Readiness project provides free resources and support to help companies in a challenging economic climate and prepare them for future opportunities.

“We wanted to do something to help small and medium sized ocean sector organizations through these difficult times,” says Jennifer LaPlante, DeepSense executive director. “Through providing some support now, we hope that this will enable companies who might not otherwise be ready for a DeepSense project to explore new business opportunities.”

Complimentary support

The project aims to help ocean companies to grow their data capabilities. Companies who engage with the project will have access to co-op students and subject matter expertise from researchers at Dalhousie and other local institutions.

Project ideas could include anything from helping prepare governance, processes and documentation for how current or future data is collected and stored to ensure data quality, consistency and usability; to creating and modifying a database to improve scalability as the organization grows and adds new data sources, such as sensors, customer interfaces or dashboard and analytical requirements.   

“Smaller companies often don’t have the resources to manage their data effectively and ocean-related companies generally have a lot of data that could be used to their advantage,” says LaPlante. “This is where we can come in and not only help companies define data projects but provided the resources to make them happen.”

LaPlante hopes this short-term initiative will help companies not only during COVID-19 but longer term.

“By maximizing their data now, companies can really get themselves into good shape to do even more with this in the future,” she says. “If your data is organized, you could be well positioned to engage with artificial intelligence, machine learning, or data visualization projects which can really take your operations to the next level.”

Opportunities for students

It is not only ocean companies that can benefit from DeepSense’s Data Analytics Readiness project, they are also looking for students to be matched with participating businesses on co-op and internship projects.

“Projects provide a fantastic opportunity for students who may be searching for work opportunities as part of their degree program,” says LaPlante. “I am particularly hopeful we may be able to help some students who may be lacking co-op or internship opportunities as a result of COVID-19 disruptions.”

Students from any of the seven academic institution associated with the Collaboration for Analytics Research, Education and Training (CARET). Student applicants should have specialized data analytics skills or experience.

Applications for companies and students are now open and will be accepted as a rolling intake.

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