Any business generates huge volumes of data, and since time immemorial it has been processed to the full satisfaction of the owners. But there is a subtle shift in this scenario today. In the past, data entry and processing had always been a manual function that necessitated hours upon hours of intense calculations involving a lot of man-hours. Now, it is a matter of how quickly and accurately you can enter data into a system and generate reports speedily using the latest state of the art software and hardware.
But do you really need to go through this process in-house? From a broad perspective, the answer will be an emphatic NO. If data entry is not your primary line of activity, you are actually wasting precious resources. You can avoid huge investments to set up necessary technologically advanced systems that are required for data processing. This savings in costs can be channelized to offer your clients better products at competitive prices as well as invest in new product launches that will have a positive impact on your bottom line. Further, you can better utilize qualified personnel to carry out core activities that have a direct effect on business growth and development, sales and profitability. For this to happen, you should opt to outsource data entry services.
But before looking around for a reputed data entry outsourcing company that matches your business goals and objectives, you should have a clear conception of the types of services you’d want to outsource. This varies between industries. An example will clarify this point. For the insurance sector, apart from a few core activities, the bulk of back-office functions are outsourced. For the health industry, the emphasis will be on bills and invoice processing as well as insurance claims of patients. The degree of accuracy required also varies and the extent desired should form the basis of any contract. Hence, decide on the services and take it forward from there.
Here are a few types of data entry services that you can generally outsource. The list is merely indicative and by no means exhaustive in nature .
- Bills and Invoice processing – This is good for all businesses. But you will do well to supplement this with ancillary accounting functions. Link Accounts Payable and Accounts Receivable to bills and invoice processing and you’ll have a ready information package to ensure smooth flow of working capital.
- Bulk data entry – This will include both printed and handwritten data and will be put into formats that will facilitate easy report generation. Most outsourcing companies especially if they are offshore will enter incremental data uploaded by you at the end of the day and have the reports ready in the morning of the next day, taking advantage of the time differentials.
- Credit card processing – Almost all outsourced agencies have fail-safe security and encryption systems in place for data safety. You can, therefore, entrust credit card processing to data management services and be sure that your clients’ confidential information will be well protected.
- Database creation – At the root of smooth functioning of your business is a well-structured database from which you can repeatedly draw data and reports to take crucial business decisions. Outsourced agencies will take all your raw data, enter it in a systematic form, maintain updates and present it to you in whatever form you require.
- Data cleansing – This is also called data scrubbing and is one function that you should definitely outsource. It involves modifying and removing from your database all incorrect wrongly entered data and those that have been duplicated. These might have crept in at some point of time but once the outsourced company has cleansed your database, you can depend on them to maintain it accurately.
There are limitless types of data that you can outsource. These companies have achieved a high degree of sophistication and credibility and have optimized their operations by adopting the latest technological innovations in their systems. Further, they use Virtual Private Network (VPN) and File Transfer Protocol (FTP) for file exchange and this is a guarantee of data security for you. Spin off your data entry functions and focus on what you are best at – devising strategies for business growth and development.