Data entry is an essential process for most businesses. Entering or updating information into a computer system or database helps you to keep accurate records, track performance, and make informed decisions based on the data. Inaccurate data can lead to incorrect decisions and wasted time and resources. As entering data into a computer is a tedious, time-consuming task that demands utmost accuracy, data entry is often outsourced. An experienced data entry company will have skilled operators who can perform the job accurately and efficiently. Today, data entry clerks in leading outsourcing companies leverage Robotic Process Automation (RPA) tools to streamline the data entry process, reduce errors, and increase efficiency.
Data entry is used in various industries such as healthcare, finance, education, and government. There are two types of data entry services: offline and online. To know which option is suitable for your business, you need to understand the difference between them.
Differences Between Online and Offline Data Entry
One of the main differences between online and offline data entry is online data entry requires a live internet connection, while offline data entry does not. ‘Offline’ means the data entry specialist does not have to be visible to their client.
- Offline Data Entry
Offline data entry typically involves manually inputting data from physical documents, such as paper forms, into a digital format, such as a spreadsheet or database. Though most companies conduct business online, industries such as healthcare, legal, insurance, and government often deal with sensitive client data. In these niches, offline data entry is often preferred over the method because it allows for greater control and security over the data being captured. The offline method can also be useful in areas with limited internet access or unreliable connectivity, where online data capture may not be feasible.
Offline data entry allows compilation and synchronization of data and information from all sources. Data entry clerks read and enter data from paper documents, CDs, DVDs, electronic gadgets, files, documents, bills, books and online resources, and more. Even data collected from online sources can also be assigned to offline data entry clerks for compilation with greater accuracy. Offline data entry also enables clients to save almost half of their operational and overhead costs as outsourcing vendors offer combined data conversion and compilation package services.
All that the offline method requires is a data entry specialist who can enter data into a computer system accurately and fast, and is knowledgeable about handling a database. However, offline data entry can be more time-consuming and labor-intensive than online data entry since physical documents need to be collected and processed manually.
- Online Data Entry
Online data entry is the process of entering or updating information into a computer system or database via an internet connection. It typically involves inputting data from online forms or documents into a digital format, such as a web application or cloud-based database. In online data entry, a database is created to store and access the information from any location. In addition to data entry, the online option may include data mining and data processing.
A major advantage of online data entry when compared to offline data entry is that it is driven by IT, which cut costs and time. The growth and reach of IT facilitates direct communication, better research, superior storage and sharing and most importantly, improved security of the online database via passwords, allowing the information to be accessed from any location when permitted. The data is readily available and you can search and compile data from online sources in quick turnaround time. You can avoid the costs involved in compiling offline data and converting it into electronic format.
Other benefits of online data entry over traditional offline data entry include:
- Accessibility: As it offers remote access to the data, online data entry can be done from anywhere with an internet connection.
- Efficiency: The online option saves time and effort as it eliminates the need for manual data capture from physical documents.
- Accuracy: As online data entry systems often include validation rules and error-checking mechanisms, they promote accurate and complete data entry.
- Collaboration: Multiple users can access and update data simultaneously in online data entry systems, improving collaboration on projects and workflows management.
By outsourcing your tedious data entry tasks to a specialized company, you can significantly reduce your operational costs and free up valuable time to concentrate on your core business activities. With advancements in technology, leading data entry outsourcing companies offer Robotic Process Automation (RPA) assisted customized data entry that replace laborious manual data capture processes with faster and more accurate automated data processing. This allows for efficient handling of large volumes of data and ensures that your business operations run smoothly and effectively.