What Is Ten-Key Data Entry?

Ten-key data entry is a skill used to process financial transactions, using a numeric keyboard. The more skilled and experienced a person is in this field, the more capable she becomes in performing 10-key by touch. In turn, the person entering data can automatically realize when an error is made. Entering a transaction into a company's accounting system begins with 10-key data entry.


People learn 10-key data entry through using a keyboard containing 10 essential keys. Essential keys are numeric in nature. It requires extensive focus. People learn this data-entry skill through practice and repetition. Learning 10-key data entry requires motor skill dexterity. Error-free data entry is a valued skill, since it is the foundation of recording a firm's finances. Every financial transaction in the firm's accounting program starts with 10-key data entry.


Ten-key data entry is used to enter financial transactions and to calculate items. It is used whenever someone needs to add columns of figures or to calculate equations involving figures. Ten-key data entry can be used for processing invoices, banking transactions, sales orders, payroll, credit card transactions and other financial transactions. The numbers are entered using a calculator, adding machine or a numeric keyboard connected to a computer. It is used to process financial information, save time, increase efficiency and increase office productivity.


Features of 10-key data entry include a numeric keyboard containing the numbers 0 to 9. Depending upon the keyboard manufacturer, numbers 1 to 9 are in the keyboard's center. Number 0 is usually located below the numbers 1 to 9. The number 5, directly in the center of the numeric keyboard, will have a small bump placed on it to signify its position. Data entry beginners learn that their fingering position on the keyboard is correct when the middle finger has a bump underneath it.


Using 10-key data entry benefits the data entry person by maintaining and developing motor skills. By using the fingers and hands, joints and muscles remain limber. The longer a person uses this skill, the greater his speed. In turn, both the company and the 10-key data entry person benefit from increased reliability, awareness and accuracy. A good 10-key data entry person will recognize errors as soon as they are made, since the data entry is performed by touch.


Ten-key data entry is a repetitive maneuver. A person is using the same fingers, muscles and movements to accomplish the task. The wrist usually stays in one position, many times not the most beneficial one. Even if the work station is set up properly, a medical condition known as carpal tunnel syndrome is common among people working with 10-keys in their jobs. It is important to take breaks, stretch fingers and muscles and use proper ergonomic aides.


  • Accounting: The Basis of Business Decisions; Walter B. & Robert F. Meigs; 1990


About the Author

Crystal Welch has a 30-year writing history. Her more than 2,000 published works have been included in the health and fitness-related Wellness Directory, Earthdance Press and Higher Source. She is an award-winning writer who teaches whole foods cooking and has written a cookbook series. She operates an HON-code-certified health-related blog with more than 95,000 readers. Welch has a B.B.A. from Eastern Michigan University.