Why do documents need to be re-keyed?

April 17, 2013

Earlier this month, we wrote about choosing between automatic and manual data entry, and which is appropriate for a particular document. Of automatic data entry, or optical character recognition (OCR) and intelligent character recognition (ICR), which turns both typed and handwritten text into searchable and digital text when scanned. However, even with these tools, not every business has become comfortable with OCR, and AIIM set out to find out how businesses use this technology. 

AIIM produced a white paper that looked at how information on scanned documents is uploaded, with some surprising results. Of all data that is extracted from scanned documents, 55 percent of information is entered manually, where as 32 percent is extracted through an OCR system. Additionally, 12 percent is extracted by ICR, and 6 percent is "unconstrained" or cursive. 

The survey also asked if data that is hand-printed or hand-scripted is important, and 50 percent said that it was very important, 25 percent that it played a key role. 

Basically, though most businesses surveyed would benefit from ICR because they consider this information important, very few actually utilize the solution. Additionally, many said that using this technology would help the business be more productive, and save money with this increase in productivity. 

So, why aren't businesses using OCR and ICR? 

"The majority cite localized decision-making and difficulty in accommodating different types of form layouts as the main reason for not adopting forms scanning, followed by a lack of designated owner," Don Dew, the Senior Marketing Manager at Parascript LLC, the company that helped create the survey, said in a blog post. 

However, these challenges can be overcome. For businesses that have high volumes of paper, outsourcing to a bulk scanning company can use these technologies to scan documents quickly and efficiently, with OCR and ICR capabilities. Though many have stated that they believe that using these resources would help their business, working with a document scanning service can help make the next step. 

Tab Service Company is a Chicago based company with over 53 years of experience as a data processing service provider.  We provide business with outsourcing solutions for document scanning services, data entry services and mailing/lettershop services.  As a SOC2-approved service organization, we apply industry-best practices to our approach with clients.