Transcribing is a career that takes time to grow. However, many give up in the initial stage without considering that with dedication, practice and willingness to learn it becomes easier and enjoyable. With enough experience one gets the ability to handle huge workload with quick turnarounds and high quality. After getting the basic skills in language and typing, it becomes difficult for one to access reliable mentorship on the job hence failure in one’s transcribing career. Here is an interview with a highly experienced professional transcriber who offers some tips on this noble career.
Briefly share your experience in transcribing
I have been in the transcription business for the last 15 years. Having a background in journalism with typing and writing skills, I realized that my career as a journalist was not doing well. I had to develop a plan B. I landed on an online job posting for transcription and I applied for it without knowing what it entailed. I was given a trial assignment which didn’t go well and the company advised me never to apply for their job again. This did not kill my spirit as I continued to apply for more transcription jobs.
My encouragement to those venturing in this career for the first time is to have the interest and passion for the job. Never get discouraged by the many rejects that one gets in the process but learn from the mistakes to perfect the future assignment. Secondly, one needs to join transcriptions forums the best ones being the Transcription Essentials and Transcription Haven for mentorship in the career. Also, always go for quality over the speed or workload covered. The later develops with time but good quality builds the career stability.
What are the tips to maintain excellent quality all through?
- Practice, practice, practice makes perfect. Thus, I do practice writing a lot as an off task activity. I record my own work when I am not busy and practice transcribing it with the aim of perfecting the quality of my work.
- In addition, develop a working weekly planner. I have a monthly planner that highlights the assignments that I have handled with their length, format and due date clearly indicated. This helps me to utilize the time at hand effectively hence meeting the set deadlines.
- Be single minded and dedicated. I dedicate most of my time to my job in which I spend between 10-15hours in order to meet the target of the day. Also, I do eliminate all the distractions in order to concentrate on my job, by getting a comfortable working environment free of noise and with ideal working equipments.
Do you any advice for transcribers out there?
- Get a text expander for the job. This is a gadget that helps in improving the quality of your work through auto-corrections hence increased speed. Then, identify the phrased that you make use of most when typing and create a short cut for them memorizing the keystrokes for them, making your work pretty easier.
- If the company you are working for have wiki pages that gives a clue to what their interview is all about. Thus, make use of these pages when you do not grasp the context of the interview.
- Make Google your companion. This comes in handy when you do not understand the exact word you are hearing hence you can search for it from the Google window.
- Lastly, your health comes first. Take care of your mental health by taking time off from the transcription job.
- Be efficient, articulate and bank on quality all the time!