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Completing the Field-to-Office workflow with ArcGIS

Tuesday, 4th August 2020

The large array of ArcGIS mobile and desktop applications can be confusing and a little intimidating at first. Functionality often seems to overlap but there are obvious differences posing the question “Which app is right for your business”?

The aim of this blog is to give a concise overview of the Esri apps relating to mobile data capture and to explain how by integrating apps such as Collector, Survey123 and Workforce together you can generate efficiencies by enhancing and expanding your workflow within the ArcGIS platform.

Collector for ArcGIS – Maps, maps, maps!

The simple usability and large selection of out of the box background mapping makes Collector an attractive data capture solution. Also, the ability to plug-and-play precision GNSS receivers means high accuracy capture is always an option.  

Survey123 for ArcGIS – Power forms!

If maps are not your main focus or if you have a big list of often nested inventory items to capture and you need to create a simple form capture experience for the operative then the business logic and auto field calculation capabilities of Survey123 make this the perfect option.

Workforce for ArcGIS – The delegation station!

Workforce for ArcGIS encompasses two roles/applications. Firstly, the Dispatcher; in charge of creating, delegating  and managing assignments as well as worker workloads and secondly the Worker; in charge of fulfilling these assignments. Workforce is certainly not a data capture solution however its strength is as a task manager application.  

Operations Dashboard – Live reports!

To tie everything together back office the powerful and dynamic Operations Dashboard for ArcGIS can provide an eagle-eyed view of live operations as well as insight and analytics helping to help drive further efficiencies.

App Integration

So why would we want to combine these mobile applications in this way? Will one not suffice?

Each application offers something different and if you need something more, then integrating the apps together supercharges the functionality while retaining a seamless user experience.

Maybe you need the precision data capture of Collector plus the business logic and sketch pad capability of Survey123. A simple URL embedding Survey123 into a web map pop-up allows you to open one from the other to complete a repeat inspection of an asset

…Or maybe you require a task management system that also allows you to complete complex inspections as part of the assignment? Simple configuration of Workforce can enable that integration.

If you need to navigate to assets directly from the ESRI apps did you know you can also integrate Collector and Workforce with Navigation apps such as Google maps, Waze and Navigator for ArcGIS?

As well as carrying out site collection/inspection you can schedule field inspection assignments and manage worker workloads all within the ArcGIS cloud/server framework. Add to this the reporting power of desktop apps such as Operations Dashboard and you essentially have all the ready-made tools to complete a cyclical field-to-office workflow.

* Collector, Survey123 are available on iOS, Android, and Windows devices. Workforce is available for iOS and Android devices only.

Written by Darius Mirdamadi

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