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Are you a good typist? A good listener? Or just spend lots of time tapping away on your computer? You could be making money as a transcriber. It’s a great way to supplement your income, and can be done from home. Making it great for anyone looking to work flexible hours. Here is the lowdown on transcription jobs in the UK – is transcription right for you and where can you find work!
What is Transcription?
Transcription is the process in which speech or audio is converted into a written document. It’s a crucial way for businesses to document anything from discussions and focus groups to formal interviews legal recordings. Medical consultants also rely on transcriptionists to handle their paperwork, too.
All research needs to be analysed and processed, and the easiest way for this to be done is in a written document. Large numbers of companies will need transcribing work done in some form and as the work is time-consuming, it’s almost always outsourced.
There are two types of transcription – verbatim and edited. Which type of transcription is used depends on the purpose of the transcription and what is hoped to be gained from it.
This is a literal type of translation which aims to record how something is said. Meaning that all pauses, errs, interjections, repetitions, and stutters, should be included.
This can be important in:
- Research that’s dependent on the way in which something is said
- Qualitative research where intonation is important
- Transcripts for legal and evidential purposes
- Psychological research
- Interviews by journalists for factual accuracy
Sometimes this is also called a ‘clean transcription’. This type of transcription aims to make sure the content of a conversation is written in a clearly legible form, ensuring it is easily readable and grammatically correct.
This type of transcription can be used for:
- Meetings where topics and notes have to be published
- Qualitative research where the content is the primary focus
- Interviews that serve as a basis or outline for articles and documents
- Notes that are recorded for personal use
Could I be a Transcriptionist?
Transcription jobs can be a great way to work from home. They’re an ideal option for those who want to manage their own time and the hours they work, with the flexibility to fit the tasks around family and other commitments.
What Does a Transcription Job Involve?
Transcription jobs involve listening to various audio and video recordings and converting them into written reports. Transcription covers a wide range of areas; entertainment, journalism, market research, medical, and legal. Generally, you don’t need to have experience to become a transcriptionist. In fact, you just need to have basic computer literacy and be a competent – fast – typist. Most transcribing agencies require transcribers to pass a speed and accuracy test to ensure they meet their standards.
In some cases though, for more specific and specialised areas of transcription such as medical, experience may be required. The benefit is that these types of transcription jobs also pay more.
What Skills does a Transcriptionist Need?
- Good language skills – In most cases recordings will vary in quality and some may be hard to follow so a good understanding of what you’re listening to is beneficial.
- Listening skills – Transcribers need to be able to listen carefully to audio recordings and interpret them appropriately for the context.
- Accurate and fast typing speed – Ideally, a transcriber will be able to type at least 80 words per minute. Do a typing test to find out how fast you are. Also most businesses will require a 98% accuracy rate so, the more accurate your typing is, the fewer edits you’ll need to make later on.
- Discretion – In some cases you may be transcribing confidential audio and information. Therefore, professionalism and an ability to be discreet is needed. Especially in the cases where you’ll be dealing with clients’s and individuals’s personal data.
- Computer skills – As you’ll be working remotely you need to be computer savvy and competent enough to use basic computer programmes.
Resources to Find Transcription Jobs in the UK
There are plenty of sites out there to help you find transcription jobs. Especially as most transcription work is outsourced – there are plenty of opportunities to be had and there’s always work around. You’ll find lots of transcription jobs in the UK – and many overseas, too. If you sign up to an agency based in the US, Canada, or Australia, bear in mind that your transcription needs to be written in that variation of English.
Use Transcription job Websites
There are so many transcription sites out there. Some of the most popular are TranscribeMe, Go Transcript, and Daily Transcription. For most sites all you have to do is sign up, complete a short quiz, and transcribe some test audio to check you meet their requirements.
With all these transcription sites you can decide the hours you’re free to work, and even choose which hours to work. It’s an ideal job for students and anyone looking for flexible work they can fit in around other commitments.
Apply for Agencies
Other places that you can look for transcription work is through agencies. Sterling Transcription, Premier Transcription, and TypeOut are all popular options who work with clients all over the globe. Apply online through their websites and become part of their transcription service.
Approach Local Businesses
Local businesses, news channels, and publications will likely all have transcribing working going. As this work is so time-consuming and employee numbers may already be limited, generally they’ll be looking to outsource this work to independent contractors and freelancers.
Check Social Media
For many businesses, social media is one of the most effective ways to reach out to a large audience. Posting job opportunities on social channels is a popular way of advertising new opportunities now. So make sure you keep an eye on social pages, Facebook groups, and use hashtags to help your search.
Fiverr is an online marketplace for freelance services with project-based pricing. You can set yourself up as a freelancer and start advertising yourself on Fiverr so businesses actively searching will be able to find you.
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