Non-GIS users access to data

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09-08-2021 05:56 PM
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BrianOberdorf
New Contributor II

I work in a small Water and Sewer Utility, and we keep the majority of our data in a geodatabase. The database contains a number of feature classes and data tables.

However some of our users are not familiar with GIS software and haven't traditionally interacted with, or needed, spatial capabilities. To date they have used a third party database.

Due to the data becoming horribly out of sync, I want to bring all of the data into the geodatabase.

Is there a way such that non-GIS users can view and/or view and edit the data from say a user friendly software. Microsoft Excel would be ideal, particularly its ability to sort and filter.  Viewing the data would be good, but viewing and updating certain tables would be really good.  I appreciate there is a trade off between data integrity and usability, but to give edit powers to a select number of tables would avoid running duplicate systems.

For the record the non-GIS users have no desire to learn to utilise ArcGIS Pro.

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4 Replies
mdonnelly
Esri Contributor

Hi Brian,

My first thought is that you could make use of ArcGIS Online. This has the advantage of providing simple web based editing and viewing for your users.

The complication is that you would need to host your data in ArcGIS Online to allow them to do this. You would also need to synchronise data between ArcGIS Online and the on premise geodatabase periodically.

If your organisation had ArcGIS Enterprise then it would be possible for your users to edit the geodatabase data directly via feature services, without the need for synchronisation.

Regards,
Mark
pkorst_coa
New Contributor III

>> Is there a way such that non-GIS users can view and/or view and edit the data from say a user friendly software. Microsoft Excel would be ideal, particularly its ability to sort and filter. <<

Yes! 😀

"In ArcGIS Pro you can also use the data you have in spreadsheets and databases, and combine it with public data, live data feeds, or data shared by other organizations."

Link:  Work with Microsoft Excel files in ArcGIS Pro—ArcGIS Pro | Documentation <

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BrianOberdorf
New Contributor II

Thanks pkorst_coa,  so if I had a spreadsheet where I protected cells outside of an actual data table, and used Excel List Validation, I could probably achieve a reasonably controlled data set to minimise issues.

mdonnelly
Esri Contributor

You would need to export the data into Excel format to be able to use the suggested functionality. My understanding is that you want to maintain one source of truth, ie the geodatabase to avoid synchronisation issues?

If you are prepared to export to Excel format then you could use Esri Maps for Office, which does not need Pro:

https://www.esri.com/en-us/arcgis/products/arcgis-for-office/overview

Or ArcReader, which needs a .pmf exported file.

https://www.esri.com/en-us/arcgis/products/arcreader

However, edits would need to be synchronised back the geodatabase.

To allow multi user editing, directly the geodatabase feature classes, you would need an Enterprise Geodatabase (ie on an RDBMS). If you have the license for that, then you have the license for ArcGIS Enterprise, which at a minimum could be stood up on a single machine (with the right resources). ArcGIS Enterprise will allow you to publish local feature services, which will allow for web based editing (no Pro, just a web browser).

Regards,
Mark