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Organizing Data Labeling for Machine Learning

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Organizing data tagging for machine learning isn’t a one-time task, but a single mistake on a data tagger can cost you a fortune. Now you are probably wondering how do I get high quality datasets without spending so much time and money. Sharing the responsibilities and estimating the time required for a given task and the tools to help you get it out of the way in a short amount of time, you don’t have to worry about organizing the data labeling for machine learning beforehand. In other words, prior organization of data labeling for a machine learning project is key to the Success.

Practices Worth Using While Annotating Images for ML

Annotating images for ML is a demanding business. Data labeling is an inevitable and most important step in supervised learning. Data processed this way requires a human to map the target attributes from historical data in order for an ML algorithm to find them. You need to pay attention to details because even the smallest mistake can potentially affect the quality of your datasets and, consequently, affect the overall performance of the ML model.

Here are some of the best practices data labelers can use to annotate images for their predictive models:

  • In-house labeling
  • Crowdsourcing
  • Outsourcing to individuals
  • Outsourcing to companies
  • Data programming
  • Concluding thoughts

In-house labeling

The identification of the home data is considered the most accurate and most efficient approach to set the data. This internal approach offers you the opportunity to track the process in each phase, and appropriately assign tasks to your team tasks. However, compared to other practices discussed below, this approach may be slower, but it is effective for data marking companies with sufficient human work, time and finance.

  • Advantages: Internal labeling gives you the ability to control the entire process and thus achieve predictable results. Sticking to the schedule is key to flagging the data, and being able to review the team’s progress at any time to make sure it’s on schedule is gold.
  • Disadvantages: Internal labeling has a serious disadvantage, it takes a long time. It is said that good takes time and it is no better than here. Your team will need time to carefully label the data to ensure high quality data sets. Of course, if your project is too big for your internal team to finish faster.

Synthetic labeling

Synthetic marking is where the data is created by mimicking the actual data based on the standards specified by a user. This characteristic approach uses a generative manner formed and validated in original data. You can use the synthetic labeling in the formation of ML models used for object recognition tasks. Complex tasks are needed, for example, large sets of training data that does not require bander tags. In addition, a lot of work generally has a short reaction time, i.e. the generation of a label data record is the best option.

  • Advantages: Synthetic labeling saves time and money, as data can be generated, adapted and quickly adapted for specific tasks and to improve the model more quickly. In addition, data taggers can use non-sensitive data without necessarily having to ask permission to use that data.
  • Disadvantages: This approach requires high performance computing. The rendering process and the additional training of the model, which is included in the synthetic tagging, require a high computing bandwidth. Second, the use of historical data cannot guarantee similarity with synthetic data. With that in mind, ML models trained using this approach require more training with real data.


Instead of hiring a data tagging company, you can use a crowdsourced platform with on-demand employees. On such platforms, customers register as applicants, create and manage their ML projects with one or more Human Intelligence Tasks (HIT). The provision of these services is known to host a community of contributors who can tag thousands of images in a matter of hours.

  • Advantages: Do you want quick results? Crowdsourcing is your way. For taggers with large projects and tight schedules, crowdsourcing comes in handy. Equipped with powerful data labeling tools, this approach saves time and money.
  • Disadvantages: Crowdsourcing is not immune to the provision of tagged data of inconsistent quality. A platform where employee income is based on the number of tasks completed each day tends not to follow task recommendations in order to complete as many tasks as possible.

Outsourcing to individuals

The internet has given freelancers the opportunity to advertise their skills and experience and find high-paying jobs, such as data tagging. Freelancers allow clients to post jobs and hire freelancers based on their skills, hourly rates, work experience and more.

  • Advantages: Here you have the opportunity to interview the freelancers and learn more about their experiences, so you know who you are hiring and what to expect.
  • Disadvantages: When outsourcing to people, you may need to create your own user interface or task template and add complete and clear instructions for freelancers to fully understand the tasks and that is time consuming.

Outsourcing to companies

There are specialized reading outsourcing companies specializing in the data labeling for ML. These companies are well equipped with a managed staff who guarantees high quality training data.

  • Advantages: Outsourcing companies promise high-quality results ensuring their workforce can deliver it.
  • Disadvantages: This approach is costlier than crowdsourcing since most of them do not specify how much it would cost per project.

Data programming

Data programming eliminates human tagging. This technique has tagging functions that mark the data. A data set generated by the data programming approach can be used to train generative models.

  • Advantages: There is no need for manpower to label the data, a data analysis engine does the job automatically.
  • Disadvantages: This approach is known to give less accurate data labels, which then compromise the quality of the dataset and the overall performance of the ML model.

Concluding thoughts

Today’s innovators have decidedly embraced complex machine learning models because they know that only high quality data matters. While data annotation tools are available on the internet, finding the right annotation tool is another difficult task. Data science teams need to know which software best suits a specific project in terms of total cost and functionality. In addition, data taggers have found new ways to semi-automate the tagging process by partially eliminating or adding manual tagging techniques. However, the future will largely depend on the development of more efficient automated data labeling techniques that reduce human engagement, but at the same time demonstrate high quality training datasets for machine learning models.

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