What should be the Key Skills of a Data Entry Clerk?

Data Entry Clerk Key SkillsAlthough mundane, the job of a data entry clerk has always been in demand ever since its inception back in 1890s when the invention of punch card data processing became popular. This invention helped in creating a lot of demand for skilled workers who could operate the keypunch machines. The people were required to punch in a lot of data to be processed in order to obtain the desired results, and although the skill set required from data entry clerks today is very different, the expectations and the way they need to perform their job remains quite similar.

The ever rising amount of data is a major issue in any growing firm. If the data is not meaningfully processed, entered, and archived, it can lead to customer dissatisfaction and attrition. Therefore, it is important that the data entry clerks be well-trained and qualified to do the job. In this article we highlight the basic data entry clerk job description and the key skills needed to be a data entry clerk.

Key Skills to be a Data Entry Clerk

It is important for every company that the data entry clerks it employs are highly skilled so as to provide the best possible services. Skilled data entry clerks can help you minimize administrative burdens, cut costs, and ensure that your resources can be focused on other important tasks. Some other benefits include an increase in operational accuracy, maximum use of relevant technology, etc.

Some of the most sought after data entry skills according to employers are listed here:

  1. Basic Software Knowledge

    It is important that every data entry clerk is well versed with basic softwares such as word processors, spreadsheets, database, and other record management software. Data entry executives enter coded, statistical, and financial information using mouse, keyboards, scanners, etc. and hence basic computer usage knowledge is a must.

  2. Good Written and Communication Skills

    Due to the nature of the work involved, data entry clerk need to communicate extensively both within and outside teams. Therefore, a data entry clerk needs to have excellent written and verbal communication skills. If outsourcing data entry work, one should especially check the communication skills of the data entry personnel belonging to the service provider.

  3. Fast Typing Speed

    Data entry experts are expected to have exceptional typing speed as they will have to perform huge amounts of data entry in a very short span of time. They need to be comfortable with all forms of data entry devices and be comfortable using a mouse, keyboard, scanners, etc. Most of the employers around the world expect the typing speed of data entry clerks to be around 30 to 40 words per minute.

  4. High Levels of Concentration

    Data entry jobs are highly repetitive and the workers need to spend a lot of time on the same task. This kind of job therefore necessitates that the data entry clerks have very high level of concentration and patience. Lack of this attribute may lead to poor quality results and significant attrition.

  5. Typing Skills

    Along with typing speed, one cannot ignore accurate typing skills as even with speed, mistakes should never occur while performing data entry. Since data entry varies from business to business, and often include complex medical codes, personal contact information, etc. the details need to be accurately typed. As a result, employers always look for data entry clerks who compliment a fast typing speed with accuracy as well.

How about reading an article on How to Avoid Challenges that Come with Manual Data Entry?

Data Entry Clerk Responsibilities

In addition to the key skills, a data entry clerk has certain responsibilities which need to be looked after while one is on the job. Some of the data entry clerk duties are listed here:

  • Verify the Accuracy of Data

    Simply relying on the data available is not a sign of a good data entry clerk. It is important that the executive verifies the accuracy of the data before entering. Wrong information can lead to incorrect reports and bad business decisions.

  • Make Necessary Corrections

    In spite of all the assurances and verifications, errors in the data can easily creep up. In such cases, it is the duty of the data entry clerk to identify these errors and take the necessary actions to make corrections as quickly as possible.

  • Help in Building a Data Management System

    Since data entry clerks are constantly working with management teams and a large amount of data, they are the best people to suggest on how to build data management systems according to every business' unique requirement.

  • Be Confidential

    A major issue that data entry firms face is data confidentiality. Stringent rules must be imposed on data entry clerks and they need to understand that losing data or data mismanagement in this world of cutthroat competition is a disaster which should be avoided at all costs.

  • Manage Data Flow

    Every data entry executive must be aware of the general business operations and workflow. It is important that they communicate with the managers and maintain the information flow by coordinating with other data centers and information points.

Things to Consider Before Hiring Data Entry Clerks

Although there is no fixed criteria which could help you to choose the ideal data entry clerks for your business, certain things, when kept in mind, can help reduce future problems while helping you build an effective data entry team. Some things to consider before hiring data entry clerks include -

  • Ensure you have placed multiple layers of security and have a reliable infrastructure which cannot be exploited easily. It is always wise to check with previous employers and other references before you choose to hire data entry clerks
  • Check if the agency you are approaching for outsourcing, or for hiring clerks carries out regular auditing for accuracy and whether a dual keying system is followed or not
  • Invest in process automation software to streamline your data entry clerks' workload. This would also ensure they spend less time wasting time performing tasks which could be easily automated
  • Do not opt for manpower or service providers who only try to sell their services by leveraging the cost benefit. Cost is but one factor, as the quality of work is especially important as well when it comes to hiring data entry clerks

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We also provide a trial service where you outsource some part of your project to us even before signing the contract. Once you are satisfied with our services you can go ahead and outsource the entire project to us.

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