Geospacial Survey Technician

Occupation Overview

Collect geospatial data for a wide range of uses including the creation of maps and satellite navigation systems


Geospatial Survey Technicians collect geospatial data (data relating to geographic position on the earth’s surface) for use in the creation of maps, satellite navigation systems (Satnavs), Global Positioning Systems (GPS), construction of infrastructure including roads, buildings, bridges, offshore construction such as wind turbines and oil rigs, the identification of local, suburban or international boundaries, military, mining and a wide range of other purposes. Geospatial Technicians use a wide range of technologies such as Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and electronic data capture tools and processes, such as Building Information Modelling.

The main duties and tasks are to:

  • capture geospatial information
  • take, record and document appropriate geospatial measurements to the required specification
  • work with other professionals, clients, customers and others to obtain and provide geospatial information
  • perform calculations and use geospatial data

Geospatial Survey Technicians can work in either the public or private sector and employers include geophysical consultants, civil engineering contractors and consultancies, rail operators, mining companies, local authorities, central government, the military, multinational corporations, specialist land, air and offshore mapping companies, cartographic publishers, suppliers of computer based mapping technology and GIS, utilities companies and a range of others. Geospatial Survey Technicians work with scientists, technologists and other related and land related professionals.



Geospatial data collection

What is required

Capture, process, manage, use and quality assure geospatial data. Perform relevant calculations

Health and safety

What is required

Demonstrate the application of health and safety issues and the requirements for compliance. Plan and prepare appropriate risk assessment and method statements


What is required

Apply knowledge of the principles of mapping and geographic information sciences in practice


What is required

Take geospatial measurements using basic and/or advanced instrumentation, such as an Electronic Distance Measurement devices, automatic levels, lasers, scanners, and Global Positioning Systems. Present, record and document appropriate information gained from measurement to the required specification. Specify and plan surveys and the instrumentation needs.

Geospatial technology

What is required

Use appropriate methodology and technology to collect relevant digital data. (must include use of Geographic Information Systems).

Legal and regulatory compliance

What is required

Apply knowledge to comply with relevant legislation and regulations when undertaking geospatial work

Personal effectiveness

What is required

Effectively manage time and tasks, communicate and negotiate effectively and plan and prepare appropriate methodologies and technologies. Use effective techniques for conflict avoidance


What is required - Geospatial Survey Technicians will be required to know and understand:

Geospatial data

How to capture, process, manage, use and quality assure geospatial data and undertake relevant calculations

Health and safety

The principles and responsibilities imposed by law, codes of practice and other regulations


The principles of mapping and geographic information sciences and accuracy, scale, currency and fitness for purpose of hardcopy and/or digital maps, drawings, imagery and plans.


Take, record and document geospatial measurements to the required specification. The principles and limitations of measurement and the techniques used to gather spatial data. Be aware of the importance of co- ordinate systems, projections, transformations and datums.

Geospatial technology (including GIS)

Appropriate geospatial technologies (must include Geographic Information Systems) and the application of these systems


How and why sustainability seeks to balance economic, environmental and social objectives

Legal and regulatory compliance

The principles of law relating to land ownership and boundaries and the appropriate permissions required to undertake geospatial survey work

Personal effectiveness

How to manage their own time and tasks, communicate and negotiate effectively and know how to plan and prepare work to meet client and budgetary requirements 



Provide a high standard of service

What is required


Provide the best possible service, with attention to detail meeting all deadlines set

Trust and integrity

What is required

Develop trust by working in a professional and positive manner at all times and be honest and straightforward

Treat others with respect

What is required

Treat everyone with courtesy, politeness and respect

Take responsibility

What is required

Be accountable for your own actions

Personal development

What is required

Seek advice and explanation and seek feedback on your own performance.

Participate willingly in learning from and observing others

Share knowledge

What is required

Work with other parties from collection to delivery of geospatial data ensuring the sharing of knowledge


The entry requirement for the apprenticeship will typically be 5 GCSEs at Grade C or higher including Maths and English or a Level 2 apprenticeship in a relevant discipline but the final decision is that of each employer.

English and Maths

Apprentices without level 2 English and Maths will need to achieve this level prior to taking the end-point assessment.


This Apprenticeship Standard is at Level 3.

Professional registration

The apprenticeship will provide the necessary knowledge, skills and behaviours to apply to become an Associate member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors or an Associate Member of the Chartered Institution of Civil Engineering Surveyors.


The Geospatial Technician apprenticeship will typically be undertaken over 2 years.

Review date

This Apprenticeship Standard will be reviewed after 3 years.


Originally published on, this information has been re-used under the terms of the Open Government Licence.


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