Data processing is an important part of any organization. It allows a business to process accounts, create documents and update orders. The longer it takes for work to be performed, the more money is lost to the process. Companies look for speed and accuracy in data processing. The average keystrokes per hour in the U.S. is considered to be 12,000, according to a 2006 report by Viking Software Solutions, a data-entry software manufacturer.
Companies expect data-entry workers to reach the national keystroke average with at least 90 percent accuracy. The faster you type, the more keystrokes you generate per hour. Many programs and classes available to help you learn to type faster and more efficiently. Learning the "home row" keys can also help increase your typing speed and accuracy, using controlled finger movements.
A keystroke is a count of every time a button is pressed on a keyboard. Many word-processing programs such as Microsoft Word and Apple Pages will count the characters and keystrokes used to generate a document. Programs such as keyloggers will record every keystroke you make on a computer and can be useful for calculating keystroke figures. Be careful if you decide to use one, since they can be used to record your personal information and passwords.
Data processing is the task of entering information into a computer. It can involve a database, spreadsheet or other document. You use a keyboard to type information that the computer recognizes and puts into the appropriate sections. Data processing has also replaced handwritten notes and memos in the corporate world.
The faster you can type with accuracy, the more work you can complete on time. If you can't meet the national keystroke average, there are ways to improve, helping to gain more employment opportunities. Free typing lessons are available online. Practicing during a break at work, using a word-processing program to type simple sentences, can improve finger dexterity.
Shannon Webster is a professional writer based in Hagerstown, Md. She has worked with the U.S. Air Force and several state governments since beginning her career in 2001. Webster currently serves as a writer with Decoded Science, specializing in cognitive and social sciences.