What is data entry

Data entry is actually a very broad term that encompasses a number of occupations. These include electronic data processors, typists, word processors, transcribers, coders, and clerks. And, yes, many of these jobs may be done from a remote location, but data entry jobs from home can be quite different from those done in an office.

The way home-based or online data entry jobs are performed may vary considerably from office jobs.

Data entry operators working for micro labor outfits that use crowdsourcing techniques may simply do small bits of work for small fees. This model is growing more common. Or, some data entry workers may still work for more traditional data entry companies, which are often business process outsourcing firms. These people might be paid an hourly or per-word rate for a whole project.

Data Entry Definition

In essence, data entry means to operate equipment (often a keyboard) to input data, which may be alphabetic, numeric, or symbolic, into a company’s system. The data entry operator may be required to verify or edit data as it is entered or this work may be done by another person. The data may come from hand-written forms or be audio files.

How Data Entry Jobs Work

And while many of the data entry positions mentioned above fall under the data entry umbrella, jobs that are advertised as “data entry jobs” (as opposed to transcription work) usually require the least skills and in turn pay the least.

In general, the method that data entry jobs might pay could be an hourly wage (however this is rare for online data work), per piece, keystrokes per hour or keystrokes per minute, per audio minute or per word. Most of these methods make your rate of pay highly dependent on your speed at data entry.

Read more about what and how data entry jobs pay.

Specialized data entry positions, like medical transcription or medical coding, require more training and/or certification. And even among general transcription jobs, there are many different types of transcription, which may take more experience and speed than the typical data entry job. These kinds of data entry positions could also require special equipment.

Data Entry From Home

Though many companies only allow those who have been trained in-house to work offsite, data entry can often be done from home. Keep in mind, though, that because data entry from home is almost always done by independent contractors--who are not subject to minimum wage laws and who are in competition with a global workforce the pay is typically even lower for home-based workers.

Also, many online ads for work-at-home data entry jobs could very well be work-at-home scams. Any data entry position that promises high pay is most likely not what it seems and should be avoided. For more on scams, see How to Spot a Data Entry Scam.

If you want to find more ways to use your typing skills to make money from home, check out 4 Ways to Make Money Typing from Home, and 5 Things You Should Know About Data Entry Work Before You Try It.

What You Should Know About The Smart Crowd Data Entry Work

The company uses a workforce of home-based independent contractors to securely enter client data. The flexible work schedule is designed for people who prefer to work on their own terms. Whether you choose night or day, two hours or six, you control your schedule.

Types of Work-at-Home Opportunities at The Smart Crowd

Data services involve typing, data cleansing, digitizing data, updating data and data tagging.

Home-based data entry operators log on to the The Smart Crowd system and choose data entry tasks offered to them in their areas of expertise. Workers see an image of the data and then must enter it accurately.

All data-entry keyers are hired asindependent contractors. This means there are no benefits and no guarantee of minimum wage. While the payment may seem low, if you understand how and what data entry companies pay, you'll see it is in line with other companies. Payment is on a per piece basis, and different types of data entry pay at different rates. Expect the per piece rate to work out to about $5 to $6 per hour.

The Smart Crowd pays weekly, but the minimum payout amount is $30, so until you accrue that much, the earnings are held in your account. Hours are always flexible, but you may find that there are certain days of the week or periods during the year when work is not available.

Qualifications and Requirements

You must be at least 18 years old to work for The Smart Crowd. A score of 97 to 100 percent on the evaluation test is the main qualification for this job.

The company hires worldwide. However, the company divides its workers into two groups—one is for those who reside in the continental United States and the second is for all international individuals.

Workers must maintain an uninterrupted presence in their country of residence throughout the duration of their work for The Smart Crowd.

Working for The Smart Crowd requires a home computer with a high-speed internet connection and a web browser with JavaScript enabled. Basic skills include:

  • ability to type quickly and accurately
  • good spelling, grammar and punctuation skills
  • ability to work quickly
  • good comprehension of text you read

Applying to The Smart Crowd

Click "Join The Smart Crowd" at the bottom of The Smart Crowd website and fill in the short form with basic information about yourself.

Next, answer questions about your demographics, education, areas of expertise and language skills. The company uses this information to match you with tasks that are appropriate for your skill sets. Based on the information you enter, you are offered one or more placement evaluations. You must complete at least one placement evaluation before you can be considered for any work. Depending on how well you do on your evaluations, various small jobs may be offered. The higher you score, the better the chance you will be offered work. You are only allowed to work on tasks related to your areas of expertise.

How to Work at Home in Online Data Entry

Data entry is a field in which the work-at-home paradigm keeps changing. Online data entry work has become much more prevalent as companies hire independent contractors based all over the world. Often these data entry operators remotely access a company’s infrastructure and work in much the same way their office-based counterparts did.

However, the rise of crowdsourcing technologies allow companies to parse out data entry into small tasks spread across a larger workforce. Workers log on to a system, and instead of being assigned a whole project, they choose one tiny entry or verification task and typically receive a tiny payment.

What Is Online Data Entry?

At its most basic level, data entry involved operating equipment that inputs data into a company’s system. What equipment is used (most often a keyboard) and what types of data (alphabetic, numeric, or symbolic) as well as where the data is coming from, often an image or audio file, can all vary. Home-based transcription jobs, though similar, often require more experience and speed.

Some data entry operators might work for micro labor outfits that use crowdsourcing techniques or for more traditional data entry companies, which are often business process outsourcing (BPO) firms.

  • What Kind of Data Entry You Can Do From Home
  • How Data Entry Pays
  • Where to Find Data Entry Jobs
  • How to Spot a Data Entry Scam

How Data Entry Pays

Most home-based data entry jobs are for independent contractors rather than employees (which means there is no guarantee of minimum wage), Data entry compensate workers using a variety of rate structures, such as:

  • Hourly wage (rare)
  • Per-piece (common in crowdsourcing operations)
  • Where to Find Data Entry Jobs
  • Per-word

So while data entry jobs are less likely to give speed tests than transcription jobs, if you are not fast you will not earn much. Read more about how data entry jobs pay.

  • What Kind of Data Entry You Can Do From Home
  • How Data Entry Pays
  • How to Spot Data Entry Scams
  • Where to Find Data Entry Jobs

Data Entry Scams

Work-at-home data entry is a field particularly rife with work-at-home scams.Legitimate companies will not charge fees to work for them. You should never have to cash a check or wire money. Be very careful of any company selling a “business opportunity” in data entry. Read more about data entry scams so you can be prepared to tell the legit operations from the scams.

However, companies that may not be scams may still not be good opportunities to make money. Data entry is a low-paying field in general, and some companies may pay so low as to make it not worth your time. You could end up just making a few cents for a lot of work, so you have to be careful. Read more about how home-based data entry jobs pay so you can be prepared to find the best opportunity.

  • What Kind of Data Entry You Can Do From Home
  • How Data Entry Pays
  • How to Spot Data Entry Scams
  • Where to Find Data Entry Work