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Get data you can count on using rules to manage geodatabase edits

Are multiple users in your organization making changes to data located in a centralized database? If so, you’re probably thinking about data quality and integrity, since multiple users can be a vector for errors to creep into the database that everyone relies on. Use rules to help you control which edits can be made to the database, whether from desktop, mobile or web applications.

The new attribute rules available in ArcGIS Pro can be used as a complement to contingent values, domains and subtypes and, as a result, can help you increase your confidence in your centralized, authoritative data.

Working with all these rules will require you to define your requirements and decide what will work best in various scenarios. Some rules will help restrict users from completing edits, such as adding values or polygons that aren’t accepted in the geodatabase, but these can also create performance issues because they query the data on each edit. Other rules validate the edits after the fact. They can be run in batches and scheduled to run at regular intervals, for example when users are less active, flagging the errors automatically so that edits can easily be made.

In some other cases, like we often see with mobile applications, domains and subtypes can be used to offer pick lists for certain fields, eliminating data entry error. Limited sets of values called domains can also be made available for each subtype, keeping standardized answers as the only available options to choose from.

In addition to domains and subtypes, you can leverage contingent values. These allow you to make fields depend on other fields. For example, if a user is collecting information about trees, they might first pick the tree type, after which the subsequent field would only display varieties of trees from that tree type. And so on and so forth for the subsequent field options. This is very useful in utilities and parcel management, but can apply to many other types of data collection where dependencies exist.

Many more options can be leveraged with the users in your organization. To learn more about the possibilities and how to configure these rules, watch this short video from my colleague Nigel Pereira in which he discusses the workshop he teaches on this topic.

Find out all the details about this workshop here.

This post was translated to French and can be viewed here

About the Author

Carole Arseneau is a Market Research Specialist at Esri Canada. Over the years, she has advised customers from all industries on how to leverage GIS in their organizations. More recently, she’s been conducting market research to uncover details about the various jobs our customers do each day in various industries. This will help inform Esri Canada’s corporate strategy and better support our customers. Carole holds a Market Research certificate from the University of California, Davis, a GIS certificate from Florida State College in Jacksonville and a bachelor’s degree in Kinesiology from Laval University in Québec City. Being by the water has always made her feel at home and has given her inspiration to keep a positive outlook in life.

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