More data means more accurate information, but it can also mean a lot more time extracting information. Fortunately, automating data extraction can save a significant amount of time and money.
A study at MIT showed that firms who utilise data to make decisions have 5 to 6% higher returns than those who don’t.
What is data extraction?
Data extraction takes information from sources like emails, PDFs, text files, barcodes, or images and compiles the information into usable analytics. It allows you to gather information from various sources and craft it into useful information that can help transform your business. Depending on your needs and the type of tools you employ, you can use the data you gather to create valuable resources that offer long-lasting benefits in all areas of your company.
Data extraction also allows you to leverage the competition by collecting data about your competitors and analysing their performance, and comparing various aspects of their company with yours in an effort to improve the services you offer.
How much time does it take to extract data manually?
If you think that automated data extraction might not be necessary, ask yourself this: are your employees responsible for typing in expenses, and attaching receipts, or collecting and sorting paperwork? If your answer is yes, then automated data extraction can potentially save your employees hours of labour in that field.
According to a 2016 study, data analysts only spent 20% of their time analysing data. The majority of their time was spent collecting and cleaning up data from various sources. Another study showed that analysts spent as much as 27% of their time cleaning data and 15% to 18% of their time gathering and extracting data. While analysts could be using data to create algorithms, develop new marketing tactics, or build learning models, they’re often spending most of their time collecting and organising the information they need.
By automating data extraction, you can free up your employees to tackle tasks that will expand your organisation. Automated data extraction can also help you obtain information in real-time, avoiding problems such as low inventory.
Manual data extraction is prone to errors
Aside from being time-consuming, manual data extraction is more likely to lead to errors and potentially erroneous conclusions. Manual extraction could also result in duplicates or missing information and incomplete reports.
These errors can lead to fraudulent claims, duplicates (or missing) bills, unusable data, and vulnerable personal information.
Automated data extraction is faster: it’s evidently faster to rely on automatic data extraction than manual extraction. Extraction programs can process and organise information much quicker than a human.