In an online world where everything is going digitized, businesses are adopting ways to reduce manual labor in their tasks. From mobile banking to online shopping, consumers now prefer to do every possible task electronically. In 2020, over 2 billion users purchased products online and during the same year, e-retail sales surpassed 4.2 trillion U.S dollars globally. The increased number of online users has compelled merchants to have a digital space for their products. Covid-19 pandemic also prompted businesses from having physical stores to online stores. With Optical Character Recognition (OCR) technology businesses are adopting advanced ways to digitize their data extraction tasks.
A Brief On OCR Technology
OCR is a technology that extracts data from images and converts them into machine-readable form. There is a range of documents like printed or digital images of paper-based reports that can be processed through OCR software. Handwritten documents from which extraction of data was once considered a dream can also be read by text recognition software and can be transformed into digital format.
Data Entry Methods (Manual vs Digital)
Before the evolution in technology, companies used to perform their tasks manually with the help of human hands. The procedures took longer to complete having the probability of inaccuracy because of the involvement of humans. Data entry was also a tedious task and did not incorporate advent methods to have fulfilled the purpose of work.
But thankfully, after the technology has emerged as the new normal, the software has shared the work of humans. Data entry can be done digitally nowadays. OCR scanner app extracts any type of data from a variety of documents and transforms it into searchable or editable data.
How Does OCR Work?
OCR software consists of artificial intelligence and OCR technology to convert scanned documents into a machine-readable format. It uses machine learning and computer vision to render text in documents in order to provide accurate results to users. Automated optical character recognition application examines the documents in the form of images and detects the texts to translate them into digital format. This helps the software to compare images of available characters to the ones stored in the database of OCR engines.
The extraction of data incorporates three steps as pre-processing, extraction, and post-processing.
In pre-processing, all the stuff necessary to prepare the text for extraction is performed. For instance, light qualities and distortion are adjusted, the text is aligned in straight lines, and the sharpness of the images is increased.
The next step possesses extraction of text after reading the various styles that the data is present in.
The last step, post-processing, comprises recognition of text in various styles.
Industries Deploying OCR Services
Optical character recognition can process any type of document be it structured, unstructured, or multilingual. It can also extract data from user-provided URLs of the reports. Following are some of the industries that are using optical character recognition to enhance their user experience:
The Healthcare industry is widely benefitting from optical character recognition. Patients’ medical history containing x-rays, reports, previous illness, treatments, and tests can be scanned, searched, and stored using OCR. The software can easily digitize the records which reduce manual labor.
Banks are one of the prominent users of OCR applications. Data can be extracted by checks, payslips, and loan documents.
The legal industry deals with a lot of paperwork thus greatly benefit from optical character recognition. Firms can digitize documents like affidavits, statements, and judgments.
OCR enables tourists to scan their own documents on a hotel website, therefore, allowing them to do self-check-in.
Perks Businesses Enjoy By Incorporating OCR In Their System
There are a lot of benefits that AI-powered OCR can do to businesses as:
By taking help from software, companies can reduce the human resources involved in the process. Operational costs can be cut down by utilizing automated OCR text recognition.
Businesses’ productivity can be expanded if they put software to work. Manual work replaced by robust data collection can be used to perform some other work.
Maintaining manual data entry is a long and tiring process and also incorporates chances of human error. Digitizing manual work can reduce inaccuracy rates to a minimum.
An Optical Character Recognition OCR engine can be used to extract data from paper-based documents to convert it into machine-readable form. Data then can be transformed into searchable and editable digital format. Manual data entry processes can be tiring and can cost businesses a lot of monetary value. Digitized OCR technology has replaced the traditional processes easing the work of humans. A lot of businesses like the banking sector, healthcare, and tourism are deploying this technology to provide their customers with the best services.