With all the tech talk of Facebook’s introducing its own virtual currency, the advent of the 5G era and Donald Trump handing a lifeline to embattled Chinese tech firm, Huawei, by permitting the US to sell goods to the company, you’d be forgiven for being aware of the happenings in, arguably, one of the most-promising technological fields – OCR.

Yet, quietly and in the background of all this excitement, anticipation and political melodrama, an innovation is beginning to ripple across the whole of the global tech sector. We are, of course, talking about the revival of OCR parser technology using the power of AI.

The 1990’s birthed OCR technology. Instrumental in helping businesses to automate the processing of physical documents, OCR software enabled businesses to use software to scan documents, such as invoices and receipts and create digital copies.

Today, with two decades of technological progression, OCR technology is fast becoming vital to commercial operations. More and more we’re seeing companies around the world turn to AI-driven alternatives to boost their productivity and extract information. Simply creating document templates is no longer enough; enterprises want insights too.

The Difference Between Template-Based OCR and AI Solutions

The most common template-based OCR operate by mapping coordinates of document text and transferring these to a digital format. Once this is recorded in the OCR platform, the content is then converted to a digital format, such as a pdf. This creates an automated digital solution.

The drawback to the technology is that despite having a performance that’s greatly enhanced compared to versions in the 1990’s, meticulous line-by-line data transfer is sparsely achieved. The accuracy of some OCR document software or platform receipt parser OCR is still not quite up to the standards to instil global commercial trust. The smallest mistakes can lead to the loss of valuable data. For instance, an incorrect amount on an expenses sheet or invoice could result in incorrect reimbursement or payment.

The technology used in AI-based OCR parser technology all but eradicates this problem. With recognition extracting rates that reach the high 90’s percentile, comprehensive customer trust is assured. Moreover, AI solutions can draw CPG insights from the scanned document, affording businesses with enhanced trust of the technology and yet another reason for decision-makers to see the value of the technology.

The Next Generation of OCR Technology

We’re reached a point in the progression of OCR technology where data capturing technology is simultaneously capturing information and learning about the specific content that it’s parsing. This means that human mistake identification can be achieved as can streamlined fault management.

Think of it this way, most of us have made a miscalculation at work in one time or another or relied on software like Excel to calculate amounts only to find a wealth of miscalculations. In using an OCR parser, this problematic issue will be negated.

Without the help of AI, businesses still need a personnel resource to overseeing accounting and expense management. In incorporating AI with an OCR solution, administrative burdens and fiscal investments in personnel will be resigned to the past.

Now, believe it or not, AI is already making a big impact. Softworks AI, a US-based business, works with a Fortune 500 financial institution to simplify the management of mortgage documents. Using machine learning, Softworks AI can automate document creation and convert raw information into actionable insights, helping the financial institution to identify high priority loans. What are the benefits? Loan processing time is reduced from 2 hours to 5 minutes.

A Digital Transformation

It wasn’t too long ago that AI was embraced as a disruptive technology that stifled manual business growth. With AI this has all changed. Modern enterprises are re-aligning their expectations of what AI technologies, such as document or receipt parser OCR can achieve.

Indeed, from a strategic perspective, the capabilities of AI far exceed what was even though to be possible and mere two decades ago – and the technology is evolving all the time. Whilst AI-based tools may not be as glamourous as 5G or Cloud computing, there is no denying that their potential impact on commercial enterprise is huge.

Perhaps, more importantly, it’s paramount that companies across the world embrace the technology. Why? Like any other great innovation of the digital age, not embracing technology that offers clear commercial benefits will only hinder growth in the long term.

Still unsure of the necessity of using AI-powered OCR? Imagine a commercial environment in which zero document mistakes are made, there’s zero chance of mistakes ever being made – and vital commercial insights can be achieved with ease.