Skip To Content

Track where collectors go

As a manager, you may need to track where your collectors go when working in the field. You might be interested in knowing the routes of individuals, or in knowing the area covered by the collectors as a group. When you author the map for collection, you have the ability to have it periodically report the collectors' locations to a server, creating data to account for their time and routes. There are two parts to using this ability in the app: enabling tracking in your map when you author it and accessing the generated tracking data.

Enable tracking in your map

For your collectors to be tracked while they're working in the field, enable tracking on your map by publishing a tracking layer and adding it to your map.

Publish the tracking layer

Publish a hosted feature layer created from the Location Tracking template by taking the following steps. For more details, see Create from a template or existing hosted feature layer (ArcGIS Online or ArcGIS Enterprise).

Note:

These steps apply if you are using ArcGIS Online or ArcGIS Enterprise. If you are using Portal for ArcGIS 10.3.1 or 10.4.1, download and follow the steps included with the Location Tracking Template map package.

  1. Go to My Content.
  2. Click Create and click Feature Layer.
  3. On the From template tab, type location tracking in the search text box.
  4. Choose the Location Tracking template from the search results.
  5. Click Create.
  6. If you want a custom name for your tracking layer, set the name.
  7. Click Next.
  8. Provide the extent for the layer and click Next.
  9. Specify a title, any additional tags, a summary, and the folder in which to save the layer.
  10. Click Done to publish the layer.

You now have an editable, add-only layer. You are ready to add the layer to your map, and it will record the tracked locations.

Add the tracking layer to your map

With your tracking layer created, add it to your data collection map. Set the properties on the map, setting it to track the location of your collectors at a specified interval.

Note:

The item details page was updated in ArcGIS Enterprise 10.5. This section shows the new item details page. If you're using Portal for ArcGIS 10.3.1 or 10.4.1, steps 5 and 6 are slightly different for you. There is no Settings tab; instead, for your step 5, click Edit on the item details page. In step 6, you'll find the Application Settings in the Properties section, as there is no Web Map Settings section.

  1. Browse My Content to find the map on which to enable tracking. If you need to create a new map, see Create and share a map for data collection.
  2. Open the map in Map Viewer.
  3. Add the hosted feature layer created from the Location Tracking template to your map, click Done Adding Layers, and click Save. This layer will not display by default when working in Collector.
  4. Open the map's item details page.
  5. Click the Settings tab.
  6. In the Web Map Settings section, enable the Location tracking feature of Application Settings.
    Note:

    Location tracking is disabled by default.

  7. In the drop-down list below the Location tracking property, set a time frame for the tracking. This is how often the location of the collector is recorded.
  8. Click Save to save the changes to your map.

While the collectors are working in Collector, their movement is now tracked and recorded on the specified interval.

Note:

To preserve the battery on mobile devices, the location of the collector is only reported while the app is active. It is not reported when the app is in the background.

Collectors can't turn tracking on and off. If the collector is using a map that tracks location, and the app is active, the location of the collector is recorded. If My Location My Location with GPS off is off, the GPS is still on and tracking the collector, although the collector's location is not displayed on the map.

Access the tracking data

If you have tracking enabled in your map, you can view where the collectors go as they work. To view the recorded location information, take the following steps:

  1. Open a map containing the tracking layer. You can use your organization's website or the Collector app to open the map.

    While the collection map contains the tracking layer, you do not need to use this same map to view the data. Instead, you can create a map for the purpose of viewing the tracking data.

  2. If the hosted feature layer created from the Location Tracking template is not visible, turn it on.
    Note:

    By default, the tracking layer is not visible in the collection map that uses it to track the collectors' movement.

    • In Collector, open the map. Open the Overflow menu and select Layers. On the Layers page that displays, check the check box next to the tracking layer to turn on its visibility.
    • On the website, when viewing the map in Map Viewer, click Content in the Details panel and check the check box next to the tracking layer.

    The tracking information displays on the map, and you can see where the collectors go.

You can now track and review where collectors go during their work.