Geolocation Data

TrueContext collects geolocation data and makes it available as street addresses. This data is crucial when you need to keep an audit trail of the locations where technicians complete and submit forms. Your form can automatically collect the geolocation, or users can select a location to answer a question. This topic describes how the system collects and displays geolocations and how to configure your form to collect geolocation data.

Available on all tiers:



How geolocations work

When a user has location services enabled on their device, TrueContext can collect the device location when the user:

  • Submits the form

  • Takes a photo

  • Opens a page that includes a Geo Location question

  • Selects a geolocation to answer a question

The system displays the street address for each geolocation. The following example shows how the system displays each location in the Web Portal with:

  • The detailed fields of the address.

  • The coordinates.

  • A timestamp that shows when the system captured the location.

  • An option to open the location in Google Maps.

Form Submission details page showing geolocation data as street addresses. Includes the form geolocation, and the answer to geolocation questions.

Decide how you want to collect geolocations

The way that you set up your form to collect geolocations depends on the data that you need for compliance or record-keeping. The following table describes how to set up your form based on your requirements.

To collect a geolocation... When the user... Set up your form to...
At the form level Submits the form Collect the device geolocation. This setting is enabled by default.
At the page level Opens a page Collect a location using a Geo Location question with a Geo Stamp data type.
Selected by the mobile user Selects a custom location Prompt the user to select a location using a Geo Location question with a Geo Location data type.
Stamped on a photo Captures the photo Stamp a Geo Location on your Image question.
Stamped on attached, captured, and sketched images Submits the form Stamp a Geo Stamp on your Image or Sketchpad question.

Collect the device geolocation at the form level

By default, all forms collect the device geolocation when users submit the form. Consider the following:

  • The system collects the device location only if the user has location settings enabled on their device.

  • The app does not prompt users to enable location settings.

  • If the user’s device is offline, the system still collects geolocation data.

To verify that your form collects the geolocation, go to MANAGE FORMS > List Forms > Form Name > Form PropertiesClosed Form Properties is a tab that an admin can access on a form's overview page in the Web Portal. The form properties include various settings and configuration, including Mobile App behavior and how the user interacts with the form. > Client Behavior.

The Form Properties tab showing a form's configuration. This form has the "Collect Geo Location" setting enabled.

To change the Collect geo location setting, go to EDIT FORM > SETTINGS > Advanced Properties > Advanced Options.

Form with the "Collect geo location" setting enabled by default.

Result: When users submit the form, the system displays the geolocation address in the Web Portal and Documents.

Web Portal
The Location section in the Form Submission details page displays the street address and coordinates, as shown in the following image.
Form submission Geo location as both an address and coordinates. The system captures this data when the user submits the form.
Documents include the geolocation as a street address. The following example shows how PDF and Word Documents show the geolocation.
Form-level geo location in PDF and Word documents. The documents show the geo location address.
Structured data Documents also include geolocation data resolved as a street address. The individual components of the address details are enumerated in these documents. These components can be useful when an integrator wants to extract specific details, such as the postal code or the country. The following example shows the geolocation information included in a JSON Document:
Geo location details in a JSON document. Details include the address, coordinates, location source, and location timestamp.

Collect geolocations with a Geo Location question

The Geo Location question type collects a location as the answer to a question.
When you include Geo Location questions, the app prompts the user to enable location services. You can choose from two Data Types for these questions:

Data Type How it works Can users edit the location? Usage example
Geo Stamp Collects the geolocation when the user opens the page that includes the question. No Prove that a technician completed work at the correct location.
Geo Location Resolves to the user’s location by default. Users can select a different location using an interactive map. Yes Technicians can select a site location even when they’re away from the site.

To add Geo Location questions to your form:

  1. Open your form in edit mode.

  2. Select ADD A QUESTION > ALL CONTROLS > Geo Location.

  3. You have two options when adding a new question:

    • Hover between two questions, and select the plus sign [+].

      The plus icon. Selecting this option allows you to insert a question between two existing questions.

    • Scroll to the bottom of a section and select ADD A QUESTION.

      The Add a Question Button. This button appears the bottom of every section on the Form Builder.

    To move a question, drag it to one of the separators between questions or to an empty section. You can also move a question to another page by dragging it to the Form Index.

  4. Select the Data Type you want to use depending on your business goal.

  5. Save and deploy your form when you finish editing it.

    Result: When users submit the form, the system displays the geolocation answers in the Web Portal and Documents. The following example shows geolocation answers in the Web Portal.

    Example of Geo Location and Geo Stamp questions in the Web Portal. Both answers are shown as an address, coordinates, and with the timestamp when the system captured the location.

Info:The topic Question Type: Geo Location describes how to configure Geo Location questions in more detail.

Stamp geolocations on images

You can configure Image and Sketch Pad questions to stamp geolocation data on submitted images. You can stamp two different types of geolocations:

Stamp type Supported for Collected when the user Displayed as Requirements
Image propertiesGeo Location Photos captured with the device camera. Captures the photo. Coordinates Your device camera must collect EXIF data.
System propertiesGeo Stamp All captured or attached photos and sketched images. Submits the form. Street address Your form must collect the device geolocation.

To stamp data on images:

  1. Create or edit an Image or Sketch Pad question.

  2. Go to the PROPERTIES tab, and then select the option to Stamp Data on Images.

    Result: When users submit the form, the system stamps data on your images. You can find stamped images in the Web Portal, in Documents, or in third-party systems where you send form attachments. The following example shows a stamped image:

    Stamped image with Image Properties and System Properties. The image shows a Geo Stamp address collected when the user submitted the form. It also shows Geo Location coordinates collected when the user took the picture.

Info:The topic Question Type: Image and Sketch Pad describes how to configure Image and Sketch Pad questions in more detail.

Reference geolocations using DREL

You can use DRELClosed Data Reference Expression Language (DREL) is used to get form data and metadata and add it to a string, such as dates, usernames, or answers to questions in forms. expressions to reference geolocation data. Geolocation DREL expressions display the location street address by default. Use DREL to reference geolocation data in:

Use... To reference the geolocation data collected...
%g When users submit the form.
%a[UniqueID] As the answer to a Geo Location question.

Info:The topic DREL Complete Reference List includes a full list of references and properties you can use.