During an incident, being able to gather real-time field data provides the most accurate ‘on the ground’ intelligence for responders and managers.  From Structure Triage and Damage Assessment to Field Observations and Resource Tracking, all contribute to provide a more complete picture of the situation on the ground.  Data collection is also important in more routine day to day operations.  Inspections, mitigation efforts, surveys all provide useful information to program managers and decision makers.

Whether supporting daily operations or a dynamic incident, there are challenges to field data collection.  The most common issue is often connectivity to network or cellular systems. Being able to work and collect data in a disconnected state and to sync data when reconnected is critical. 

Another important piece in the data collection puzzle is determining which tool is most appropriate for the data collection job.  In addition to the built-in capabilities of the Intterra platform and Intterra Field Tool, Intterra supports the use of some other commonly available tools.

Intterra Web Platform

In a connected environment, the Intterra platform is a primary tool for collecting and documenting data.  Intterra allows users to edit various map layers directly through the web.

For tips on editing in the various Modules on the Intterra web platform begin here with this link to training:  Lesson 1: Getting Started with Intterra (Web)

Intterra Field Tool App

To have a similar set of functionalities, the user can download the Intterra Field Tool app for Android or iOS.  The Intterra Field Tool gives the user a similar user interface to the Intterra web application.  In addition, the Field Tool app allows the user to prepare data for offline, disconnected use for data collection. 

For help using the Intterra Field App click here Getting Started with the Intterra Field Tool

ESRI ArcGIS Online (AGOL) and Field Maps

Beyond the native Intterra data collection tools, Intterra also can support the use of various ESRI Field Map tools and applications.  To use these tools, an Agency will need to have access to an ESRI AGOL Organizational Account.  Using AGOL, an agency can share Intterra hosted data with AGOL users and can also share Agency hosted AGOL data with Intterra.  This requires some setup and configuration.  The first thing to enable the use of Intterra hosted map layers in ESRI Field Map tools is to set up the sharing environment in your Agency’s ArcGIS Online (AGOL) Organization.  Use this link for help in this process.  Linking Intterra Feature Services into Collector. 

With AGOL configured, Agencies can now utilize Intterra hosted data with ESRI Field Map tools like Survey123 and Collector.  

To display Agency hosted AGOL data inside Intterra environment, check out Sharing your ArcGIS Online Hosted Feature Services to Intterra.

Things to Consider when using ESRI Field Apps and AGOL with Intterra

To enable data collection and editing with AGOL data, some considerations are important to review and prepare for with the help of your Agency’s GIS staff.  Additionally, it is important to work with your Intterra Account Manager to make sure data is accessible and configured properly to support data collection activities.

In order to maximize using Intterra with ESRI Field Map apps and AGOL you will need to have Agency staff that is well versed in using, managing and configuring the ESRI environment and products. This includes having administrator rights to AGOL and experience with designing Web Maps and surveys used in the ESRI Field Map apps like Collector and Survey123.  If you do not have this type of access and experience, you may need to reach out to your City, County or State GIS or IT Departments who manage ESRI products and have GIS professionals with experience in the ESRI environment.  

Additional considerations include:

  • Named Users

    • To use ESRI Field apps, you will need ESRI Named User accounts from your Agency’s ESRI licensing administrator.  There are different User Types with different capabilities.  You will need to coordinate with your ESRI Administrator to set these up.  Your Intterra username will not be able to access or use the ESRI Field apps like Survey123 or Collector.  

  • Editor Tracking and Archiving

    • If you want to use an Intterra hosted map layer in your ESRI Field Apps, you need to work with your Intterra Account Manager to ensure that the map layer you want to use is configured properly in the Intterra system.  Proper configuration ensures that Editor Tracking and Archiving capabilities are properly set.

  • Database/Layer Design

    • When designing a Survey123 application, you can use only one feature service layer per survey.  For more resources on ESRI Survey123 visit here.

    • With Collector a you have a little more flexibility in the number of layers that can be edited in the app.  The number of layers edited in Collector should be limited to make it usable for field collection.  The organization also needs to create an AGOL Web Map with the Intterra Feature Service to support editing.

    • With QuickCapture you can only add features.  For simplicity, it should be limited to point features.

  • AGOL Sharing

    • To share agency hosted data in your Organization’s AGOL account with Intterra, you will need to have your AGOL Admin create a group in your AGOL to facilitate this transfer of information to Intterra.  For more information click Sharing your ArcGIS Online Hosted Feature Services to Intterra 

    • Ensure that you have addressed the items in the Editor Tracking and Archiving section for Intterra hosted layer configuration items with your Intterra Account Manager.

    • Features services that are shared to your AGOL Organization from other AGOL Organizations will need to be tested individually to determine if they can be consumed into the Intterra environment.

  • Symbology

    • Intterra is only able to display symbology that is published from ArcGIS Map or ArcGIS Pro.  Any symbology changes done in AGOL, such as Layer View or Web Map Setting, will not display the same symbology in Intterra.  It will default to a simple symbology type in Intterra.  Symbology published directly from ArcGIS Desktop applications will be rendered the same in the Intterra platform.

Click here to view a list of links available for more information on specific topics and data collection approaches.  Realize that each option will require different requirements, processes and people to implement.   

Sharing your Organization’s AGOL data with Intterra 

Link Intterra Feature Services into your organizations AGOL

Using Intterra hosted data in ESRI Collector App

Using Intterra hosted data in ESRI Survey123 App

Using Intterra Field Tool

Editing in Intterra

If you have additional questions or need more information, contact your Intterra Account Manager.