Intelligent Document Processing

Introduction to Document Layout - Why OCR Solutions Need it?

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Introduction to Document Layout - Why OCR Solutions Need it?

Modern OCR software solutions often find it difficult to read the order and face spelling errors while scanning information, and are unable to extract specific regions of interest from files.

OCR software is unable to extract complex entities spanning across multiple lines and pages and suffers from poor quality transcriptions when it fails to analyze the structure of documents correctly. Document layout analysis refers to the process of locating and segmenting information based on the structure of documents and uses visual cues to partition content. We’ll get more into that below.

What is a document layout?

What is a layout? Put simply, it is the visual design of your document.

A layout can be defined as the collective arrangement of information presented on forms. Tables, cells, images, logos, etc., all these elements together make up a document layout. Every layout is unique and this visual design and information ordering is what’s used for distinguishing different document types.

Sample invoice layout

Examples of document layouts include responsive grid designs, document formatting, page numbers, tabs, company logos, and various graphical/textual elements. The format of an invoice, Acord form, tax receipt, typography, and overall look of a document are the core components of layout designs. Such designs can be developed, improved, and customized with various mockup generator tools.

Looking past the visual cues, how the information on documents is ordered and presented also make up a part of document layouts. 

How crucial it is for OCR solutions?

When you refer to a document layout, it refers to a single document. Each document layout uses a specific set of parsing rules and when you’re processing multiple documents, document layout analysis becomes a crucial feature for modern OCR solutions.

Here’s why it’s important:

1. Convert Documents to Images

You can use AI and neural networks with object detection to convert physical documents to images for easier reading. When a layout is correctly interpreted, there is a higher chance for data accuracy and precision. You can save these layouts for automated data entry of similar document types.

2. Organized Structure and Labeling

Probably the biggest benefit of document layout in OCR is the organization of unstructured data and labeling. You don’t have to worry about the algorithm failing to detect the edges of characters, missing details, etc., since neural network creates bounding boxes for consolidating and segmenting information

3. Reduced Business Expenses

Traditional OCR solutions can incorrectly read document layouts and cause errors in automated data entry. By incorporating document layout analysis, businesses can save time and prevent the hassle of re-entering data due to incorrect layouts. Machine learning algorithms can classify document types and automatically read data or specific regions of interest based on new structures which previously didn’t exist

4. Uniform Data Entry

It is easier to automate data entry when documents follow a predefined layout or design. When information record-keeping follows a specific format, the data becomes searchable, coherent, and reliable. Making updates to these documents, adding/editing details, managing information, and removing duplicate fields automatically are the end results of good document layout design.

Finally, if you’re looking for an OCR solution that takes advantage of this technology,  Docsumo is the right answer. Sign up for a free demo with us, upload your documents, and watch the magic happen.

You’ll never look at document processing the same way!

Suggested Case Study
Automating Portfolio Management for Westland Real Estate Group
The portfolio includes 14,000 units across all divisions across Los Angeles County, Orange County, and Inland Empire.
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Pankaj Tripathi
Written by
Pankaj Tripathi

Helping enterprises capture data for analytics and decisioning

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