Consider this idea for a moment: data is king in your organisation. Data allows you to visualise relationships between what is happening in different locations, departments and systems. It also allows you to more efficiently determine the root of your problems. It’s through the accurate, efficient collection and analysis of data that you can begin to optimise the work you do and thrive.
What is ICR?
Intelligent character recognition (ICR) is an advanced optical character recognition (OCR). Put simply, it’s a system that allows handwritten characters to be recognised and converted by a computer into computer-readable text. ICR services improve the performance of OCR technologies by translating diverse handwriting styles in order to extract data from both structured and unstructured texts. It enhances and upgrades its learning processes across artificial neural networks any time new data is being applied to ICR and adds characters to the recognition database with each new handwriting it processes, which improves the accuracy of capture over time.
ICR is useful for any company that deals with a wide variety of forms, letters and papers every day, such as financial, law or healthcare industries. For such companies, documentation is a convenient and simple tool for managing consumer records, thereby requiring 100% accuracy when it comes to data collection. ICR is a simple way to mitigate error while saving time and human resources.
The biggest difference between ICR and optical character recognition (OCR) is that OCR is not set up to recognise handwriting. ICR as a subset of all OCR programs is made up of specialised software applications that are used to search and categorise documents that have been handwritten and converted into text. It is also possible to copy and paste OCR text into MS Word.
If your company requires the review of vast volumes of handwritten documents, that include ordered and unstructured information, ICR is an excellent option to add to your data capturing process. It reduces the risk of human error and offers fairly high accuracy, thus increasing the efficiency of data capturing.
The benefits of using ICR include:
- Attention to detail
- Customer satisfaction
- Accuracy of information
- Improvement in productivity
- Elimination of manual processes
The proficiency offered by ICR technology today is way ahead of what existed more than a decade ago. ICR software like Acodis should be taken advantage of by organisations, especially as demands for better information governance grow. Otherwise, you might expose your company to more uncertainty and lose an opportunity to optimise efficiency in your organisation.
When companies strive to maximise on the "big data'' that they process, handwritten data plays a significant role. Look for the best combination of experience, skill, and vision for suppliers and collaborators to make the most out of handwriting recognition in your organisation.
Outsource your ICR and its maintenance and you won't have to worry about:
- Cost of the software
- User and administrator training
- IT infrastructure and maintenance costs
- Time to install and configure the software
- Redesigning forms for optimal recognition
- Defining data exports for each form template
- Labour required to verify the recognition results
- Creating recognition templates for each data field on every type of form
Here are a few things to consider if:
You deal a lot with handwritten forms in your organisation
Without ICR, all your forms would have to be processed by hand. This causes redundant work, as employees must key in all answers in order to make it compatible and searchable with a Document Management System. ICR does this automatically.
Your organisation deals with a wide range of vendors
More and more vendors are switching to online receipts and invoices, but not all of them are there yet. Every month, businesses working with a large number of suppliers often file their documentation and place it in a pile to manually enter when they get around to it. The problem: they just never get around to it! In the case of an audit, they may face accounting errors, duplicate payments and misplaced relevant documents.
You regularly use a scanner in your company
There are many convenient reasons to scan documents, but when they’re saved as a PDF or similar file, they’re generally not searchable. Getting the most out of Data Management Systems means having the ability to instantly search files to find keywords. With ICR or OCR online software, organisations can more easily find exactly what they’re looking for.
You are striving for digitisation.
Beyond saving paper, digitising paper documents benefits organisations. They are now able to catalogue, arrange, scan and freely move these documents. For certain organisations, this results in new levels of intelligence and adaptability.
You care about accessibility in your organisation
ICR offers assistive solutions to employees or customers with visual impairments. The data becomes accessible to the various software required.
You want to encourage remote working in your place of work
Since all paper-based documents can now be converted into digital, organisations no longer need to pay for storage for their file stack. All documents can be accessed, even remotely, to carry out the business of the organisation.
The bottom line:
While ICR minimises error, the best way to validate results from an ICR system is through an editor, whose job it is to verify the original document or image with a digitised copy of the values. Artificial Intelligence supports this process through the self-learning system, which applies its learnings across the entire data set. If 100% accuracy is your goal, ICR can provide you with the benefit of search functions and access to all your original documents.
Data analytics provide the gateway to successful decision-making and valuable insight into whether your organisation is headed in the right direction. The right tools and technology can help you detect consumer patterns and illustrate the process underlying a product or service's popularity. If this is what you need then ICR will certainly benefit you and your organisation in the long run.