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How to Avoid Common Data Entry Errors

How to Avoid Common Data Entry Errors

Data Entry Errors

Data Entry Errors

 

In the digital age, maintaining and improving data entry accuracy is highly important. This information is vital to creating decisions. These are being used by businesses to continue thriving amid high competition. However, for data entry specialists, it is a great challenge for them to achieve high accuracy as they are in constant pressure to complete their workloads on time, which gives room for data entry errors. You need to understand that there’s always a chance that human error will happen. But they are not the only ones as even the automated data entry may sometimes result in inaccurate data entries.

 

Common Types of Data Entry Errors

 

No matter if it’s manual or automated, mistakes will always come in surprise when it comes to data entry. Let’s get you familiar with the typical data entry errors that you will address sooner or later as you go on with your data management processes:

 

Transcription Error

This is more common when inputting words than numerical data. It includes typographical errors, repetition, deletion, and other human errors. It usually occurs when the agent is rushing the work, given the fact that they need to get a pile of projects done in a day. They tend not to notice when they hit the wrong key. It can also happen when you are using a program that automatically corrects words. It can sometimes change the context by altering a word different from what you intended to input.

 

Transposition Error 

If transcription errors are common in words, transposition errors usually occur in numbers. This is when the agent did not notice that he unintentionally changed the position of the characters. An example of this is when you intend to type 143 but accidentally typed 134 without noticing it.

 

Incorrect Data Formatting

This is one of the most typical issues in the automated data entry process. Even advanced software can create inaccurate results. In this, we have inputted correct data, but it became incorrect as it was placed in the wrong field. There are also cases where the correct data was inputted in the correct column, but the information was used inappropriately.

 

Data Misinterpretation

This type of data entry error usually happens when the numbers are mixed with words, such as when inputting codes or passwords. An example of this is when the original data states that the character is O as in the letter, but the agent thought of it as 0 as in the number, and other cases of data misinterpretation.

 

Getting yourself familiar with these errors will help you decide on the best way to fix the problem so the next time you encounter them, you’ll know what to do.

 

How to Avoid Data Entry Errors

 

To help you prevent these data entry mistakes from occurring as most of the businesses rely on some of their strategies and goals from this information, here are some helpful tips to maintain accurate data entry:

 

Hire Sufficient Staff

In data entry work, like any other job, no matter how good and efficient all of your staff are, they may still create careless transcription errors, including double-entry at times when stressed, overwhelmed, or burnt out. Galinsky, president of the Families and Work Institute, said that workers who feel overworked are more likely to make mistakes on the job. To avoid this, they mustn’t be bombarded with the workload as it may affect the way they do their job. Give them enough time to get a specific project done to ensure that they do it carefully and with high accuracy. You should consider providing or allowing breaks for your agents when needed. 


In line with this, make sure that you have enough people to handle your data entry processes. If you want it to be hassle-free, low-cost, and more efficient, outsourcing data entry may be for you. Set your standards and goals first so you can come up with a list of companies that are qualified based on these. Narrow down the list by having a conversation with them. Partner with a reliable data entry service provider that can provide you with the best offer at every angle.

 

Train Employees

This applies not only to newly hired staff. Even experienced agents need to train from time to time as it is important to constantly update your knowledge and skills. During this time, stress the importance of data. Open their eyes and mind to the value of data accuracy as well as to the effect of inaccurate entries to businesses and even in our daily lives. It might help make employees more responsible for their work. Provide them with the needed information, wisdom, and training for them to do their jobs well.

 

Provide a Comfortable Working Environment

Most employers are not aware that the workplace plays a significant role in the way employees do their job. Repetitive tasks may lead to a lack of attention and errors. It would be nice of you to create something for your people to feel comfortable and have fun while doing their tasks. As cases like typing fatigue and eye pain may occur, you may transform the workplace, especially their workstations into eye candy. But bear in mind that it is best to provide a flexible working environment as everyone works differently. Provide enough support for them. You must hear their voice and consider their needs.

 

Consider Automated Error Reports

This is an advanced feature of the automated data entry software. It can be utilized to save time and reduce errors. It can also help level up the efficiency of the data entry. This is great for projects that have the same type of data. An example of this is when entering an account number. If you set the system to require a specific number of digits, it will quickly notify the operator when he has input a lesser or more number of digits.

 

Assure the Quality of Data

In the field of data entry, it is a protocol to ensure that all works are double-checked. Error-free data entry is always the goal. With this, you need to hire Quality Assurance Specialists, who understand well the importance of data validation, to check and maintain that all the data are accurate and of high quality. There is also some data entry error checking software available that you can use to level up the accuracy. It is also a must to monitor progress. This greatly identifies and lessens, if not all, most errors to reduce the data entry error rate. It also eliminates the need for re-entering the data which could consume some of your time. In addition, regular checking of it may help you determine the areas for improvement.

 

Identify the Source of Data Inaccuracies

Knowing where the problem is coming from is critical to maintaining a high level of accuracy in data entry. You may check the statistics and patterns to help you determine where the error is coming from. Once you get the answer to this, you also need to analyze if it’s an internal or external source. Identifying the cause of inaccuracies will help you big time in fixing the problems as quickly as possible. This will pave a way to make necessary changes to both processes and techniques.

Set Realistic Goals

One of the problems with data entry is having goals that are quite far from the reality of reaching it. The management should have clear, understandable, and reasonable goals for the whole team. Besides, although speed is fine considering that projects are time-bound, it is still better to prioritize accuracy over speed. According to Inc.com, rushed work is bound to have errors. It may compromise the quality of data, which is why giving enough time for every project is of great benefit to your business and your staff as well.

Maintain High Standard for Data Entry Accuracy

Achieving and improving accuracy is possible through setting data entry predefined standards. Examples of this are data profiling, geocoding, linking, matching, and monitoring. This helps enhance the data quality and the work practice itself.

 

Update Your Systems

Every business, especially the ones that use automation to input data, should understand that even systems make mistakes. They are not always as reliable as what you think they are, which are common for programs that are not regularly updated. It is for this reason why you should ensure that all the automated systems and programs are always updated and functioning well. You should also leverage appropriate software tools to minimize the workload of your agents. There are different data entry software and some of these can automatically extract data, such as Optical Character Recognition (OCR) and Intelligent Character Recognition (ICR). Less manual work may result in fewer errors. 

 

Managing data is tricky as there are business processes, strategies, and decisions that will depend on it. That is why preventing data entry errors is one of the most important things to keep in mind in any data management process. Managing these mistakes by adopting these tips will help develop a good data process and will benefit your business big time.

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