Scanning Documents Into Word
Often we get asked if it’s possible to scan documents into Word.
Needless to say the answer is yes. There are however a number of ways to do this and it really depends whether you are looking to scan thousands of documents for a business requirement or just an individual user with a smaller requirement for converting just a few documents.
Lets start with the business user who has a higher volume of documents. In this process its all about the conversion stage to allow the document to become editable.
In the first instance the paper document is scanned and saved into a chosen file format – this could be PDF or TIFF for example. Although its possible to open these in Word, they wont be editable and that is the problem that most people face.
In order to make these images editable and therefore Word friendly, another process is involved. The process is known as OCR or Optical Character Recognition. OCR uses sophisticated recognition technology to identify the shapes of the letters and converts them into text which can be recognised and edited in Word.
Once converted from an image to a document, the documents can be edited and treated like any other Word document. OCR software is available from a number of different vendors. We use a very high end “OCR Engine” to convert our images – this guarantees consistency and most importantly quality.
As an individual user the process is similar, but you’ll be completing it on your home PC or laptop.
The best article we’ve found on this is on the MS Office Site.
The first step is once again to either scan your document and save the image. Just to note a photo from a camera phone is unlikely to work.
Once you have the image saved you’ll need to convert it, and there are a number of software options for this. Some are free, but others will require payment.