If you have been looking at transcription services for your documents, you may have come across two options; human transcription and automated transcription services.
While automated transcription services may sound attractive because of their fast turnaround and low price, they do also have quite a few downsides.
In this article, we’re going to talk you through why a human transcription may be the better option, depending on your needs for the document.
What Is an Automated Transcription?
Before we talk about why you should choose a human service, we briefly wanted to explain what an automated transcription actually is.
Basically, it’s a piece of software that listens to your recordings, and types out what it hears.
As you can imagine, artificial intelligence is not quite as able to produce high-quality transcripts as humans.
And there are various reasons for this which we’ll talk about later on.
Is It The Same As a Speech Recognition Software?
Yes, pretty much. There are some specialized pieces of software too, but they also have the same issues.
Although sometimes they can have improved accuracy in terms of understanding a speaker, there are still some other significant issues with it too.
Why Choose a Human Transcription Service?
The short answer to that question is simply accuracy & overall quality of the transcript.
Automatic transcriptions and speech recognition software will never get the same accuracy as humans.
Unless the final document is for your own notes, you probably want the reader to understand it. Well, with an automated transcription this can often be quite hard which can lead to significant consequences.
Below, we’ve explained why this is the case.
Humans Can Recognize Multiple Speakers
One of the first reasons why you might prefer a human to transcribe your audio file is because they can tell the difference between several speakers.
This means if your audio or video file has multiple speakers and you want that to be clear on the final document, an automated transcription will not be the best option.
Artificial intelligence is not yet smart enough to be able to separate the voices of different speakers, so it would not produce accurate transcripts.
Humans Can Deal With Background Noise
Another advantage that humans have over artificial intelligence and speech recognition software is that they can deal with background noise.
On the other hand, a piece of software would assume that you want this background noise transcribed as well.
As you can imagine that can often lead to some strange results, and low accuracy.
Humans Can Still Understand Accents & Dialects
Another thing about any type of software, speech to text app, and similar is that they often have trouble understanding accents & dialects.
This means if the speaker on your file has any type of accent or dialect the chances of the software being accurate are quite low.
Certain words that may sound different on the file, human transcriptionists will be able to understand, while artificial intelligence won’t.
Humans Can Tell The Difference Between Homophones
One of the main reasons why automated transcriptions can also be a bad option is because they often can’t tell the difference between homophones.
An example of this would be the words “to”, “too” and “two”.
Unless written out, artificial intelligence often gets these wrong. This means, if you want an accurate transcription, you’re always best to go with a human transcription service.
Check Out Our Transcription Services
We hope this article has helped you understand the differences between human and automatic transcription.
If you feel that you would be better off with a human transcribing your recordings so that they are accurate, you can check out our transcription service.
We offer custom solutions for our clients and you can request a free quote before working with us. Usually, you will receive a quote within one hour and we can also work on quick turnaround times if that is something you need.
If you would like to request a quote you can do so here.
Alternatively, you can also learn more about our transcription service, or read some of our related blog posts below.
Human Transcription: Frequently Asked Questions
Lastly, we also wanted to answer some frequently asked questions that you might have as well.
What Is an Automated Transcription Good For?
Because of its low accuracy which often makes it hard to understand, they are only really used if they are for your own notes.
For example, you might have some type of recording of yourself, and want to use the content of it for your own notes.
In this case, an automatic transcription might be enough because you know what the words mean.
Additionally, they can also be used and edited for higher accuracy. However, this can also often be more work than just using transcription services the first time around.
What Are My Options If I want To Transcribe Recordings?
If you want to transcribe your files you have these three options:
- Use a human transcription service
- Use an automated transcription service
- Do it yourself
Something to note though is that if you want to do it yourself, there are also tools out there to help you transcribe faster and create more accurate transcripts. We recently covered them in Best Transcription Tools: Transcribe faster and more accurately with these tools!
How Much Do Automated Transcription Services Cost vs Human Services?
The prices for automated services vary. Sometimes you pay for the number of words, other times it’s a monthly fee for using the software.
For human services, the prices are usually around £0.90 to £2 per audio minute.
Can You Transcribe Files In Other Languages?
Yes, we can! We also offer translation services, so we have lots of professionals who also speak other languages fluently.
Just request a free quote, and let us know the language and we might be able to help.