What Is an Alphanumeric Data Entry Test?

An alphanumeric data entry test is one that tests both letters and numbers typed. Typically for this type of test, typing speed is measured in kph, or keystrokes per hour, rather than wpm, or words per minute. The standard conversion rate from kph to wpm is five keystrokes equal one word, so a 1,000 kph speed would translate to 200 words per hour.

A typing speed measured in words per hour can be converted to wpm by dividing by 60. Alphanumeric data entry tests evaluate how quickly a person can type a combination of letters and numbers using the keyboard along with the 10-key pad or with the number line above the letters on the keyboard.

Alphanumeric data entry is used in a wide variety of data entry jobs, such as transcription, billing, coding and 911 call taking. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2013, it was estimated that 207,660 data entry keyers were employed nationwide, and they had a mean wage of $14.27 an hour, or $29,670 a year. The median wage was $13.69 an hour or $28,470 a year. The same year, the top paying states for data entry keyers, according to the BLS, were (in descending order) the District of Columbia, Alaska, Connecticut, Massachusetts and Colorado.