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Set up an ArcGIS Online organization

This workflow is for software license administrators, including administrators of ArcGIS Trial organizations.

Before you can authorize ArcGIS Pro Named User licenses, you must set up your ArcGIS Online organization. The steps below give an overview of the process and are focused on the part most relevant to licensing: adding members to the organization.

Activate your subscription

To begin, you need to activate your ArcGIS Online subscription or ArcGIS Trial. The steps are outlined below. For detailed steps, see Activate subscription in the ArcGIS Online help.

  1. Open the email from Esri Customer Service that has the link to activate your ArcGIS Online subscription or ArcGIS Trial.

    Email containing link to activate ArcGIS Online subscription
    Open the activation email for an ArcGIS Online subscription. The activation email for an ArcGIS Trial is similar.

    The person who activates the subscription automatically becomes the administrator of the ArcGIS Online organization. If you are not the intended administrator, forward the email to the appropriate person.


    If you can’t find the activation email, contact Esri Customer Service for assistance.

  2. Click the activation link to open the Sign In page.
  3. If you are already using ArcGIS Online, sign in with your existing user name and password. If you are new to ArcGIS Online, click Create a New Account.
  4. Follow the on-screen instructions to create your account.

Set up your organization

After you sign in or complete the sign-up process, the Set Up Your Organization page appears. The steps are outlined below. For detailed steps, see Configure general settings in the ArcGIS Online help.

  1. Follow the instructions on the Set Up Your Organization page to configure basic settings for your organization.
  2. Click Save and Continue.

    If you have an ArcGIS Trial, a Welcome message appears with a prompt to download ArcGIS Pro and other apps. You can continue setting up the organization and download the software later. On the Welcome message, click Continue with ArcGIS Online. See Notes for ArcGIS Trial users for information on downloading the software after you set up your organization.

Add members to your organization

When you add members to your organization, you can assign ArcGIS Pro licenses as part of the process. The steps are briefly described below. For more detailed information about adding members, see Invite and add members in the ArcGIS Online help.

If most members that you add require the same licenses, user types, and other settings, you can configure new member defaults. This allows you to specify the default configuration that will be applied to new members.

  1. At the top of your ArcGIS Online organization site, click Organization. Click the Overview tab, if necessary.

    Membership information is displayed on the Members panel.

    Membership information for the organization
    In this example, 36 members have been added to the organization. Several memberships are still available.

  2. At the top of the Members panel, click Invite Members.
  3. Under Choose Method, choose a method for adding members. Click Next.

    There are three ways to add members. The default option, described here, is to add members without sending invitations.

  4. Under Compile member list, click New member.

    You can also add a list of members with prepared membership information from a CSV or text file. To do so, click New members from a file instead of New member.

  5. Provide the necessary member information. Choose the Creator or GIS Professional user type if you want to give the member an ArcGIS Pro license. Click Next. (Alternatively, click Next, add another to add more members.)

    User type set to Creator.
    In this example, the member is assigned the Creator user type.

    User types define the set of privileges available to a member, including the ArcGIS applications they can use. Roles place various limitations on these privileges. Only the Creator and GIS Professional user types can have ArcGIS Pro licenses. (Creators must be assigned an ArcGIS Pro add-on license. GIS Professionals are assigned an ArcGIS Pro license automatically).

    You can change a member's user type or role at any time. For more information, see User types, roles, and privileges in the ArcGIS Online help.

  6. Review the member information. Make edits if necessary. Click Next.
  7. Under Set member properties, on the Add-on licenses tab, click an ArcGIS Pro license to assign it to the member. Optionally, assign extension licenses. Click Next.

    After you select an ArcGIS Pro license, the list of available extensions appears.

    Add-on licenses tab showing available licenses for ArcGIS Pro and other apps.

    Your available ArcGIS Pro licenses and extensions may be different.

  8. Under Confirm and complete, review the information. Click Add members.

    After members are added to the organization, you can change their user types, their assigned licenses and extensions, and other aspects of their ArcGIS Pro use. See Assign ArcGIS Pro licenses in ArcGIS Online for more information.

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