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Skills spotlight: Data entry and 10 related positions
Susan Ricker | July 18, 2014
If you’re ready to expand your experience or are simply looking to enter a new field, here’s information you’ll find useful when planning your next career steps — like important skills, top employing industries and compatible occupations.
As the world transitions to digital record-keeping in order to preserve information and make it more accessible to others, workers are needed to add this information to digital databases. But the functions and skills of data entry keyers or other workers who enter new information into databases can be applied to a variety of other roles.
If you're ready to expand your experience or are simply looking to enter a new field, here's information you'll find useful when planning your next career steps — like important skills, top employing industries and compatible occupations.
Important competencies and skills in data entry
The educational attainment of data entry keyers mostly centers around high school diplomas or equivalent (31 percent) and some college but no degree (35 percent).* But it takes more than a degree to accurately update records and ensure that the information flow follows that organization's standards. Some important competencies and skills in data entry include:
- Customer and personal service
- Computers and electronics
- Administration and management
- Economics and accounting
Top 10 employing industries
Virtually every industry and organization is constantly adding new information to their records, and are finding the best ways to utilize this data. However, the top employing industries of these professions are:
1. Temporary help services
2. Local government, excluding education and hospitals
3. State government, excluding education and hospitals
4. Elementary and secondary schools (local government)
5. Data processing, hosting and related services
6. Federal government, civilian, excluding postal service
7. Colleges, universities and professional schools (state government)
8. Corporate, subsidiary and regional managing offices
9. Offices of lawyers
10. Office administrative services
Top 10 compatible occupations
If you're ready to make a career move and take your data entry skills somewhere new, here are 10 compatible occupations that will benefit from your expertise:
1. Word processors and typists use word processors, computers or typewriters to type letters, reports, forms or other material from rough draft, corrected copy or voice recording. They may perform other clerical duties as assigned.
2. File clerks file correspondence, cards, invoices, receipts and other records in alphabetical or numerical order or according to the filing system used. They locate and remove material from file when requested.
3. Office clerks (general) perform a variety of work, and their clerical duties may be assigned in accordance with the office procedures of individual establishments and may include a combination of answering telephones, bookkeeping, typing or word processing, stenography, office machine operation and filing.
4. Tellers receive and pay out money. They also keep records of money and negotiable instruments involved in a financial institution's various transactions.
5. Library assistants (clerical) compile records, sort, shelve, issue and receive library materials such as books, electronic media, pictures, cards, slides and microfilm. They locate library materials for loan and replace material in shelving area, stacks or files according to identification number and title. They also register patrons to permit them to borrow books, periodicals and other library materials
6. Pharmacy aides record drugs delivered to the pharmacy, store incoming merchandise\ and inform the supervisor of stock needs. They may operate the cash register and accept prescriptions for filling.
7. Receptionists and information clerks answer inquiries and provide information to the general public, customers, visitors and other interested parties regarding activities conducted at establishment and location of departments, offices and employees within the organization.
8. Legal secretaries perform secretarial duties using legal terminology, procedures and documents. They prepare legal papers and correspondence, such as summonses, complaints, motions and subpoenas. They may also assist with legal research.
9. Medical records and health information technicians compile, process and maintain medical records of hospital and clinic patients in a manner consistent with medical, administrative, ethical, legal and regulatory requirements of the health care system. They process, maintain, compile and report patient information for health requirements and standards in a manner consistent with the health care industry's numerical coding system.
10. Billing, cost and rate clerks compile data, compute fees and charges and prepare invoices for billing purposes. Duties include computing costs and calculating rates for goods, services, and shipment of goods; posting data; and keeping other relevant records. May involve use of computer or typewriter, calculator, and adding and bookkeeping machines.
*All figures and descriptions for industry, occupation and skill information from Economic Modeling Specialists International 2014.2 Class of Worker Dataset: Data Entry and Information Processing Workers