Data is at the heart of any institution, most companies refer to it as the king. To be precise, data allows companies to figure out the relationship between their profits and losses and visualize a pattern. On the same note, it very conveniently allows organizations to determine the root cause of an issue, whether it’s in the sales department, engineering, or any other place. Moreover, the recent advancements in machine learning and data science allow companies to do even more with data. Therefore, if data is so important, the only logical thing to do is to streamline the data collection, extraction, and analysis process. This is where ICR recognition comes into play, providing all three services and much more. In this post, there is a high-level view of ICR, its benefits, and key use cases in the current market.
Before moving to ICR recognition, it is important to understand its predecessor, optical character recognition (OCR). As the name suggests, it’s a process that allows the conversion of text and print documents into digital ones. For a long time, it has been the de-facto method to extract data from paper-based documents. However, there is now a new iteration of this optical recognition system, all thanks to the current AI revolution. Intelligent character recognition (ICR) provides even better accuracy and a wider operational base. Unlike OCR, ICR recognition allows the extraction of both structured and unstructured data. Therefore, improving data-related processes in all verticals of the organization.
Although ICR improves OCR in almost all cases, here are its few advantages that deserve the limelight:
The ‘intelligent’ in ICR’s name is not just a placeholder. Instead, it represents the artificial intelligence that fuels this new technology. In light of current AI circumstances, it must be noted that its ability to improve sets it apart from any other technological advancement. Right out of the box, ICR recognition can translate a larger number of typing fonts and styles than OCR. Furthermore, even if a new font comes out, the AI enables it to upgrade in record time.
One area where ICR recognition leaves OCR in the past is handwriting recognition. Although OCR is still a viable option for text recognition, it cannot identify handwriting. On the other hand, ICR utilizes deep learning capabilities to identify various handwriting styles. Moreover, where necessary, the AI can also fill in text for ICR. This is particularly helpful when certain characters are either missing or misspelled in documents.
Developing in-house ICR recognition software can incur a high cost in terms of man-hours and monetary resources. However, if a company invests in an ICR solution, it can save huge development costs and bypass rigorous administration training costs. Furthermore, in-house development will also include resources for validation. This can consume the precious time of the workers as well as developers. Contrarily, a full-fledged ICR solution comes bearing all these features.
In the current scenario, ICR recognition stands atop any alternatives for document processing and data gathering. Therefore, this technology is now used in almost all industrial sectors that deal with paper-based documents. Here’s a quick view of some of these use cases:
The corporate sector still deals with paper in nearly all of its functions. Manually entering and processing this data can lead to huge upkeep costs. On the other hand, ICR offers a much more streamlined solution to convert page data into digital documents. Therefore, it will be more manageable for the organization to store and retrieve data for future use.
Whether it be checks or banking statements, the financial industry moves on paper. Therefore, introducing ICR recognition in such a high-value and sensitive industry can also help curb fraud. For instance, banks have to verify customer identities during digital onboarding and for check deposit purposes. They can streamline this process by using intelligent character recognition online. Furthermore, ICR will also help banks in complying with Know Your Customer and Anti-Money Laundering policies.
Logistics suffer from layers of inefficiency due to the reliance on manual data entry processes. In practical terms, this can translate to a lot of smuggled and discarded goods. However, ICR recognition offers a way to mitigate these issues by adding automation to the industry. It requires minimal human intervention, therefore, removing any negligence errors.
Time and again, history has proved that only evolution survives. ICR recognition is the next evolution of document processing and data gathering. Therefore, it’s the perfect time for companies to upgrade and replace their ancient systems with cutting-edge ICR technology. Moreover, its versatile applications in all industries and the ability to learn makes it a viable option for future use as well.