Zonal OCR automates data entry for the betterment of not just the people involved, but also the output of the businesses striving to keep their administrative costs lower. Any means an organization has to achieve this end is desirable, and worth leveraging considering the current economic climate.
For instance, as employees job hop more frequently, the administrative costs of hiring and training new employees places a substantial financial burden on organizations striving to keep their costs low. This has placed a burden on the economy as a whole, and as reported by Today Online. Although relying on paper based processes isn’t cause for job hopping, the costs incurred by the phenomenon place a burden on HR managers and executives to reduce costs for stakeholders and investors.
But that burden becomes much more manageable when technology can do humans’ work for them.
Here’s something that many businesses spend too much time doing on a regular basis: manually entering form data into electronic systems—over and over again. If there’s one way to fail to automate redundant processes, this is probably it.
During Tax Season and Other Crunch Times
Accountants often hire seasonal data entry people to manually input W-2 forms and other tax documents into QuickBooks and other accounting software programs. Additionally, tax professionals using Lacerte often find that the system doesn’t hone in on solving the biggest document problems these professionals face on a daily basis.
Law firms often keep data entry clerks on staff to manually input critical case data into legal software applications for number crunching and data harvesting. In fact, data entry positions are some of the most commonly sought temp jobs, and the need for people to fill those positions is growing faster than most other temp jobs.
The problem with this is that the more temp work there is in roles that can be done via technology, the more unneeded expenses businesses are incurring, and the more likely it is that unemployment will have an effect on the economic well-being of the country. Obviously, this is an issue more important than getting rid of office labor alone.
Automation can often make processes that involve redundant activities much more efficient and can cut down on wages and extra time associated with manual tasks. What can it do with data entry?
How Zonal OCR Automates Data Entry Processes
The process of scanning documents into digital form for electronic storage is one method of automation for many data situations, but still relies upon humans more than it should.
Simply scanning documents, as opposed to transcribing them manually, so they can be later accessed digitally neglects a very important element of document management automation: search-ability. Zonal OCR for accountants.
Optical Character Recognition
Optical Character Recognition essentially turns data that is stored as an image into readable, searchable text. Using an OCR program to change documents, including JPGs, PDFs, and scanned documents is important.
The usage of the term “optical” illustrates the foresight the technology has in terms of storage, labeling, and routing capacity. It has the capacity of a perfect retina, but the gears behind its vision aren’t subject to error in the same manner as humans’ eyes.
Because binary data that can only be read by humans into searchable text documents makes them more useful, because OCR documents can be found by searching for enclosed words and phrases using a typical file search tool, like the ones included with Windows Explorer and other operating systems.
However, the ability to quickly search for and find content contained in a collection of documents is still a primitive form of automation when you consider all the work that has to go into moving the data from those documents into a normalized format that can be read by external programs.
Zonal OCR: The Next Level of Data Entry Automation
The task of searching OCR technology allows people to scan documents so that they’re searchable, but it doesn’t extract form data. That’s where zonal OCR comes in.
Zonal OCR can save hundreds of long hours of labor for organizations that need to extract data from a few thousand documents or more. Essentially, it’s not the time a task takes that makes it cost so much money for an organization, it’s the number of times it’s repeated on an annual basis.
The costs of manual data entry can cost organizations and departments with as few as 10 employees more than $200,000 annually.
It may not be noticeable while happening as most workers are so familiar with handling paper, but when tallied over time, it adds up to the salaried pay of a seasoned executive. That’s an immense opportunity cost for a business of any size.
Zonal OCR uses data templates, usually very flexible in their use and application, to automatically extract data from tax forms, legal documents, and other forms that use fields that can be taught to a zonal OCR-enabled program.
eFileCabinet and Zonal OCR
eFileCabinet is proud to acknowledge that our most recent release of our document management system includes zonal OCR for document scanning and transcription.
Zonal OCR automates data entry by labeling information in a non-arbitrary format for those often used or scanned forms, so they aren’t subject to disparate nomenclature that renders files irretrievable.
The new Zonal OCR from eFIleCabinet has new features that revolutionize the concept of Zonal OCR in both theory and practice.
For instance, Single Document Mode and Split Document mode are now integrated into the solution, providing a seamless and customize-able way to import and route files. As well as the new Print to Zonal OCR feature. Our paperless document management software employs zonal OCR to save critical man-hours for our clients and to make the entire data entry process drastically more efficient.