Intelligent Document Capture for Businesses

Intelligent document capture is different from document scanning which is actually the first step of the document capture process. There are different types of document capturing mechanisms depending on the purpose of capture. The most common mechanism is optical character recognition. There are some other mechanisms popular as well such as optical mark recognition, barcode recognition and patch code recognition and likewise.

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Pre-Processing – First the document has to be scanned completely. While scanning, the alignment may not be right, or the light settings may not be up to the mark. There could be light and dark spots on the paper.

Therefore the first step in intelligent document capture mechanism after scanning a document is to process it and make it suitable for actual recognition. The entire document is converted into 2D grayscale mode so that the lighting problems are completely taken care of. Then the document image is cropped and rotated if the alignment is not right. Then the identification of components begins where columns, paragraphs, and blocks are identified. Various other changes are done before moving on to the next step which varies quite a lot.

Optical Mark Recognition – It follows the simplest mechanism of capturing smallest possible blocks from the processed document and matching them with the pre-loaded document of similar type. According to matching and correlation, data or report is generated. It has 100% accuracy and is used in conducting exams.

Optical Character Recognition – It follows the most advanced mechanism of capturing handwritten documents. It scans every character and matches it with various preset handwritten character combination. Since every handwriting is unique, there is unlikely to be an exact match. This is where intelligence algorithm comes into play, and it finds and selects that character which has the maximum correlation with the original character. The accuracy is not 100% but with the improvement of scanned image quality over the last few years, the accuracy is close to perfection.

After the matching is done, it has to be stored on the hard drive of the centralised system or in cloud storage. Document capture systems and software have become so advanced that people are scanning documents with mobile phones on-the-go and sending it for conversion to digital format. Once all of these are done, it could be integrated with different applications for obtaining analytics and advanced reports after automated analysis based on given parameters.

Optical Word Recognition – It is every much like the previous one except the fact that it takes into consideration one word at a time instead of a character. It is best for scanning typed document where the words are likely to have exact match with preset words. The accuracy should have been 100%, but there could be some mismatch.

Barcode Recognition – Barcode is a machine-encoded representation of data, and it is very commonly used for selling products during invoicing so that the details of the product appear on the billing software instantly. It is more like optical mark recognition where the pattern of the barcode is matched and the stored data against them is fetched.

There are some other searching intelligent document capture mechanisms followed for sequencing and indexing the documents according to preset parameters.

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