More efficient tax returns based on robust document scanning
A multi-national start-up company, located in Berlin and Madrid that offers a mobile application for completing tax returns
Tax & Accounting
iOS and Android
Taxfix wants to offer its users an intuitive digital tool to process tax returns efficiently. This goal requires the digital transmission of documents of high quality. Finding scanning functions that create flawless results is essential here.
Submitting photos of the required documents does not provide the necessary quality to perform text recognition in the back-end successfully. To enable error-free processing by OCR programs, Taxfix needs a first-class document scanning solution integrated directly into their mobile app.
With the Scanbot SDK, the Taxfix team was able to integrate reliable scanning capabilities into their mobile app, thereby speeding up back-end processing, reducing costs, and improving usability.
Shorter turnaround times
Frictionless back-end OCR processing
Reduced operational costs
Using the Cropping and Automatic page detection built by Scanbot SDK, we save a tremendous amount of development time and have a great user experience.
Developer @ Taxfix
The goal: Simplified tax returns for Taxfix’ users through implementing a customizable UI and an automatic cropping functionality
German Start-Up App “Taxfix” aims to offer users a convenient and straightforward way to get their tax returns done within a few minutes, giving them an easy-to-use tool that helps them get back the amount of money they are entitled to receive. This digital approach requires flawless technical assistance through a custom UI and auto-cropping.
To support companies such as “Taxfix” to reach their goals, Scanbot offers an easy-to-implement Scanner SDK with various functionalities that can be adjusted to a company’s specific needs. In this case, high-quality scans through excellent document detection, guiding the user to the perfect scanning position were absolutely necessary to replace the previously used expensive and inefficient Deep Learning Model.
With the smooth implementation of the Scanbot Scanner SDK, “Taxfix” was able to save a lot of time regarding app development and to create an enhanced user experience. Processing documents on the user’s device simplified complex backend structures and therefore lowered the costs significantly.
Users tend to prefer easy online solutions when it comes to tax returns
According to Elster, the number of German tax reports submitted online is constantly increasing. In 2017, 22.1 Million documents were submitted electronically; in 2019 the number rose to 23.8. Since interest in handling tax reports online grew, various applications dealing with this matter have been released.
Increasing the usability of a mobile application is an essential factor when adjusting digital workflows. Most users prefer an app with easy-to-use functions and a smooth workflow that does not cause any trouble. Today, customers don’t want to spend their free time on complicated processes within mobile apps, and they demand efficient digital solutions that fulfill their needs within a few minutes.
Taxfix’ workflow before implementing the Scanner Scanner SDK
- Users are supposed to upload a photo of the regarding document.
- The application provides information on how to take the photo properly.
- After analyzing the picture, the app gives either positive feedback or tells the user that the image was “not processable” without further guidance on improving image quality.
- Once the photo has successfully been uploaded, page detection and a Deep Learning cropping algorithm cut out theactual document, removing unnecessary information from the background.
- OCR is performed on the document to extract the needed information from the uploaded photo.
This process was prone to mistakes since pictures were often too blurry or contained different background documents, interfering with the Deep Learning cropping algorithm. Additionally, Deep Learning was essential in this case, even though it is expensive regarding computing costs and required runtime. On top of that, improvements assigned to the algorithm also meant changes to the Deep Learning model, consuming additional amounts of time the “Taxfix” developers needed to dedicate to this workflow.
To streamline the customer experience, a Scanner SDK with an integrated user guidance feature was crucial. With the Scanbot SDK, Taxfix could take one of the final steps towards an error-free process of scanning documents and extracting text. Snapping a high-quality picture became possible with Scanbot’s intelligent document detection. It includes a guiding system that leads the customer into the perfect scanning position and, therefore, increases the resulting scan’s quality. This guarantees faster results regarding tax returns and finally leads to happier users.
The workflow after implementing the Scanbot SDK
- The user uploads an image by following the user guide, resulting in a flawless scan.
- On the backend, OCR is performed on the scan immediately, since the Deep Learning component has become obsolete, saving time and costs.
- More accurate results can be returned to the user with less time invested in the process.
By implementing the Scanbot Scanner SDK, Taxfix was able to:
- Save a tremendous amount of development time
- Increase user satisfaction
- Simplify complex backend structures
- Lower costs
Scanbot SDK’s mission and vision
Our initial goal for the Scanbot SDK was for it to read any text-based information via mobile devices – today, this has become a reality. The easy-to-integrate software creates virtually endless possibilities to streamline and facilitate processes for companies, employees, and customers alike, whether in document management, onboarding, sales, or HR.
We now build computer vision algorithms and machine learning models that understand all kinds of different document types. Our efforts open up even more possibilities for automated workflows that connect and process data in real time.
At the same time, we want to protect users’ personal data, which is why we opted for on-device intelligence. Scan results are encrypted before transmission to keep them safe from any outside attacks. To guarantee maximum privacy, no data is ever sent to Scanbot’s or any other server.
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