Pearl Document Scanning Blog

News and updates related to the document scanning industry.

OCR scanning is the final piece in the paperless puzzle

Of all the phrases used in the world of business, ‘paperless office’ is one that remains prominent and discussed by leaders in the sector. Unlike other ‘buzzwords’ this is not a throwaway term, with many predicting document scanning technology it is set to transform the working world. However, while this may be true, there are some that remain cynical about its relevance or practical use beyond theoretical discussion. OCR scanning services are the final piece in the paperless puzzle says Pearl Scan, proving why, when used together, document scanning technology is revolutionary.

OCR (Optical Character Recognition) is the process of converting physical documents into editable, searchable, virtual files. With OCR scanning services, information is then imported into Microsoft Word, JPEG, TIFF and PDF documents in a fully text searchable format. Printed tables, bank statements and more can also be easily transformed into Microsoft Excel spreadsheets. OCR technology takes scanned data and prepares it for practical use. With just one process, information captured from paper documents can be transformed into valuable, operational data.

Naveed Ashraf, Managing Director at Pearl Scan says, “So many offices are using document scanning services now to enjoy paperless working environments, yet there is still some confusion into the capabilities of this technology. Understandably, there are concerns over the compatibility of these new, virtual files with existing technical infrastructure and processes that are used. OCR scanning services solve these problems, seamlessly integrating all newly digitised files with current virtual working systems.”

Pearl Scan offers OCR scanning services alongside all of its other specialist scanning solutions, enabling its clients to utilise document scanning technology and enjoy the business benefits that it brings. Whether using a bulk document scanning service, invoice scanning automation, digital mailroom services or HR document management, Pearl Scan uses OCR scanning and conversion to give its client quick and easy access to the data that is captured.

Document scanning services are revolutionising the way businesses operate, saving them money, time and space and with OCR technology, a fully functioning paperless office can be easily achieved. 

What makes a good cloud-based document management system?

Whether you are already using a document scanning service or if you are currently looking for a document scanning company to take care of your digitisation requirements, this is only the first step on the road to complete office efficiency. Once the documents such as invoices, HR files or letters have been scanned and transformed into a virtual format, a safe, secure and reliable cloud storage system is needed to manage the files. With a cloud platform, you and your staff can access your files from any device that is connected to the Internet, enabling the age of flexible and remote working while also dramatically streamlining workflows in the traditional office environment. As you browse the many cloud-based document management systems available to you, here are some features that you need to look out for.

No internal administration needed

When investing in document scanning solutions, one of the reasons for doing so is to eliminate the need for manual technical assistance, leaving your office’s working day free to be utilised in a more productive way. So when choosing a cloud storage platform to host your scanned documents it is important to find one that requires no internal administration for actions such as backing up files and system upgrades.

User IDs and custom permissions

No matter how large or small your office environment is, employees from various departments will need access to a different set of documents and alternatively, there will be certain, sensitive documents that must only be seen by particular members of staff. Look for a cloud platform provider that offers customisability, creating unique user ID profiles where various permissions can be set.

OCR/Indexed search capability

When looking for a document storage system to make searching for files easier, your cloud platform must have OCR search capabilities. Without this, searching through an entire company’s library of scanned documents to find the one you need could take up time rather than saving it.

Low cost

Again, just as many businesses invest in document scanning services to save time, saving money is also important and choosing a costly cloud document storage service could be counterproductive.

Why Pearl Cloud?

We’ve developed Pearl Cloud, a unique cloud storage platform that was created in-house by our specialist team to meet the document management needs of our clients. It features all of the benefits listed above and is totally free of charge to any customer that uses our document scanning services. Want to learn more? Head to the Pearl Cloud webpage.

What is Optical Character Recognition (OCR)?

What is Optical Character Recognition (OCR)?

OCR (Optical Character Recognition) may sound complex, but in actual fact it is quite simple. OCR scanning essentially refers to the process of converting paper documents into fully searchable and editable electronic files. Extremely useful in a whole range of sectors, OCR makes one of the best uses of document and data scanning by converting traditional paper documents into a range of files, such as Microsoft Word, Excel spreadsheets, CSV, XML and PDF Searchable formats.

How does OCR scanning work?

When a page is scanned, it is usually stored as a bit-mapped file in TIF format. When that image is displayed on the screen, it is able to be read by us, however to the computer, it’s simply a series of black and white dots. OCR enables those ‘dots’ to be read by the computer in order to determine whether they represent a particular letter or number, and essentially decode it in order to be read by programmes.

The process begins by scanning the hard-copy – so a document, book, newspaper etc. to create digital images such as TIFF, PDF, PNG, JPEG. The software is then applied in order to convert images into searchable or editable text format. The software is extremely intelligent as it can help to remove any distortion and lines that may cause it to be read incorrectly. It is then able to detect lines of text and recognise characters in order for the file to be saved correctly.

OCR scanning was actually developed originally to help those who are sight-impaired gain access to printed information, but has been developed in order to be able to "read" computer files.

Where can OCR be used?

As OCR becomes more and more recognised as a tangible solution for streamlining processes in the digital world, many businesses have jumped on the OCR bandwagon. Legal businesses, HR departments, educational institutions, medical establishments and the construction industry have all improved their efficiency with OCR document scanning.

What are the benefits of OCR scanning?

OCR scanning and conversion boasts a plethora of benefits, including:

  • reduced human error
  • reduced cost
  • time saving
  • improved streamlining
  • increased efficiency

Have you considered OCR scanning as a way to improve your workflows? We have over 10 years’ experience working with businesses in a whole range of sectors. Get in touch with us now and see how our OCR scanning service can help you.

What Is Optical Character Recognition?

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What Is Optical Character Recognition and Why Is It Important?

If you’ve never heard of optical character recognition technology and you’re a bit confused about what it all means, you’re in the right place. The scanning team at Pearl Scan have broken it all down for you – read on for everything you need to know.

What is OCR?

Optical character recognition is a type of technology which recognises characters in different types of files, allowing it to identify data and make it searchable. It can convert a range of files including scanned paper text documents, digital images and PDF files.

It gives users the opportunity to edit text from a scanned image – something that isn’t usually possible. For example, if you receive an email with an attachment of a scanned image of a letter, you cannot then edit the letter in Microsoft Word or quickly search and retrieve certain data from it.

Traditionally, scanners only have the capacity to take a snapshot of a document and create an image file. You cannot edit the image of the document; OCR technology enables people to extract and edit the content of the document for a number of purposes.

How does it work?

OCR technology analyses the structure of a document and breaks it down into different elements. Blocks of text, images and other formatting features are all separated, and the program starts work on the text. Lines are divided into word, and then it begins to recognise each individual character.

Benefits of Using OCR

The development of optical character recognition brings so many benefits, especially to businesses. Here are just a few:

Data capture: OCR can be used to rapidly capture data from a number of documents, including feedback forms, surveys and questionnaires. Once these are scanned and stored digitally, in Excel or any other program you choose, the technology allows for fast searching, creating searchable PDF documents, to analyse the results.

Easier sharing: With most people having smartphones with cameras, it’s never been easier to snap things on-the-go and email to colleagues. However, most people wouldn’t have done this for important docs such as medical files or legal transcripts, as it’s not usually possible to save images as text files. With OCR it’s easy to convert, and then edit the documents if needed. This saves precious time in busy offices where there is no time for walking up ten floors to different departments to pass files and documents!

Editing old documents: Maybe you’re a publisher and want to re-visit old texts – simply send them to Pearl Scan headquarters to scan, and you can easily edit them from your computer. Perhaps you’re an office manager or HR manager and want to convert to a paperless office – scan all your paperwork and edit employment records, work processes and more instantly.

To find out more about OCR scanning, visit our dedicated page: https://www.pearl-scan.co.uk/scanning-services/ocr-scanning-conversion

Advantages of OCR (Optical Character Recognition)

 

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Advantages of OCR

document-scanningThose of you who are new to OCR or Optical Character Recognition, or even those of you who are familiar with it, might understand why it may be a useful tool when it comes to digital document storage rather than traditional paper storage, but there are so many advantages of OCR that you might not have thought about. You might even find that some of these will be useful for your company or even sway your decision to have your documents OCR processed.


So What Are The Advantages of OCR?

  • OCR processing makes your documents 100% text-searchable which is a huge advantage to be able to search through your documents for names, reference numbers, addresses etc.
  • OCR saves you a considerable amount of time compared to searching through your paper based documents in a complicated filing service. With a quick computer-based search, you can find the file you are looking for in seconds.
  • Going by that old phrase, time is money, OCR will also save your organisation a lot of money.
  • OCR can massively improve your customer services. If you take incoming calls which require you to access documents then having those document available instantly in digital form can make the overall customer experience better due to the speed of searching for the files they need and the ability to edit their contents easily.
  • OCR can allow documents to be made editable. We can convert to Microsoft Word and other editable formats so, if contents need changing, they can be changed easily.
  • OCR allows you to copy and paste from the document itself whether that's in PDF format or MS Word format.
  • OCR is considerably more accurate than it used to be so you can expect precision. If you were put off by the lack of speed of the old OCR software, you should give it another try and see just how much has improved.
  • OCR is low cost and is one of the few services which can improve the way your business operates as well as save you space and money, all for that very low cost.
  • OCR is also known to boost staff morale when their working environment is easier to work within and less paper-centric.

What next?more-advantages-of-ocr

It is possible to apply OCR conversion to documents which have already been scanned to PDF, JPG and TIFF format but it can also be done in co-ordination with document scanning services offered here at Pearl Scan.

For more information about our scanning and OCR for files, check out the document scanning category of our blog. If you're interested in either standalone OCR or OCR and document scanning then get in touch today or request a free, no obligation quote through completing the online form by following the relevant links below.

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