Did you know that Batch Processing started with the use of punch cards in the late 1800s? This evolved to instructions for computers, making the process of entire decks, batches, and cards faster and at one time.

"Batch processing is a technique for processing large amounts of data in a single group. Where computing resources are available, the batch approach helps users process data with little or no user intervention. It is usually for handling tasks like payroll or other repetitive jobs."

Read on and learn more about its history, the four Ws of Batch Processing, its advantages and disadvantages.


Batch processing began with punch cards that were tabulated into machine instructions. This method, developed by Herman Hollerith in 1890, has a long history. Hollerith created it to process data from the US Census. The card was punched by hand and then fed into and ready by an electromechanical system.

Hollerith named his invention the "Electronic Tabulating Machine" and then formed the Computing-Tabulating-Recording Company (CTR), which would later become IBM, with other inventors’ consortium.

The functions of modern batch processing are fully automated to satisfy specific time constraints. Some tasks are completed automatically, while others are done in real-time.

If there are any issues with the operation, the system sends out exception-based management alerts to the relevant staff. Managers save time by not supervising the batch processing machine, allowing them to focus on their everyday duties and other urgent activities.

Four Ws of Batch Processing

Batch processing is essential for businesses and organizations to handle vast volumes of data effectively. It is particularly well-suited to doing routine and tedious activities like accounting. The basics of batch processing are the same in every sector and for every career.

Here are the four Ws of batch processing:

  1. What program will it run on
  2. Who will submit the job
  3. Where is will you put the output
  4. When should the batch processing run

Check the next blog post for Part 2! 

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