Professional Transcriptionist: How To Get Started

Danilo Coviello

Becoming a transcriptionist has some great benefits. Throughout this article, we’re going to show you how you can get started with a home based career if you are interested in having one.

Alternatively, if you are looking for professional transcription services, you can get a free quote from us.

What Do Professional Transcriptionists Do?

A pro transcriptionist generally transcribes audio into text. Therefore, their job is to listen to audio or video files such as interviews and write them out. Sometimes, the transcription projects can also become a little more complicated, as they have to only write out what a certain speaker says, instead of them all.

Transcriptionists also often access a range of different transcription tools to help them transcribe better and in a more time efficient manner. We covered some of these in one of our recent articles: How To Transcribe Faster

You don’t have to use those free tools, but doing so can often help you transcribe more efficiently.

What Are The Benefits Of Becoming a Transcriptionist?

Becoming a transcriptionist has several benefits.

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Firstly, a lot of transcriptionists actually enjoy their job a lot, especially if they work in industries they are passionate about. That’s one of the nice things about becoming a transcriptionist, almost every industry needs them.

This gives you access to a lot of options. Additionally, being a transcriptionist also allows you to work from home. This is something that so many people dream of, as it would allow them to avoid driving to work every day, which costs them quite a lot of time.

Roles where you are working from home also often give you more freedom, as most companies will let you work whenever you want. Working from home also allows you to better manage your free time meaning you can manage your personal life better and have a better work-life balance in general.

How To Get Started As a Transcriptionist?

Unlike many other jobs, there are many ways you can become a transcriptionist.

If you have decided that transcription work is truly something that you want to do, you have a couple of options. But, before we take a look at them, you can consider just transcribing a test file. This will show you what it feels like and will help you determine whether it’s for you.

Choose a Path

As mentioned earlier, there are a couple of ways you can become a transcriptionist.

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1. Find a Transcriptionist Job

Just like any other profession, there are job opportunities offered by firms and agencies.

You can search for jobs via Google or platforms such as Indeed. Here, you’ll see which ones are available and their requirements. Plus, there is also the TCI Job board which is made specifically for transcribers, so it’s a great place to check too.

What are the requirements?

Requirements for a transcription career will vary, some will ask for certain computer specs or accuracy levels. Another company might ask for the completion of a certain English educational level. If you browse these roles on the platforms we mentioned earlier, you should be able to find some that suit your skills or give you an indication of the things you need to learn.

Most just want to know that you can transcribe audio at high quality. So, most companies look for people with great attention to detail as that’s what most industries need.

This is especially the case for specialist transcription industries like legal or medical. When working in a specialist industry, usually the transcription rate per hour will be higher too.

Quite often, it might even be a requirement to work for a company that you can work from home. This is because often, agencies operate remotely.

In general, communication is through email or the use of an online messaging system on a dedicated site.

2. Become a Freelancer/Start your own business

The second option you have is to take a different path and become a freelancer.

Here, you would get clients on your own. As you own the business, you would have full control over how much you charge for your transcription service.

Which Of These Options Is Best?

There is no definite answer to which is best. Some will prefer to work at a job, as it gives a sense of security. Others will prefer to have more control over the service they are offering.

The disadvantage of working as a transcriptionist as a job is that you’ll have less control over things such as the pricing. On the other hand, the disadvantage of working as a transcription freelancer/starting your own business is that you don’t have any guarantee of finding clients.

How Much Do Transcriptionists Make?

According to Indeed, the average salary of a transcriptionist is £19,459 per year. This is based on anonymous transcriptionists answering a research survey.

From our experience, the hourly pay can range anywhere from £10 to £40 an hour, based on the skill level, industry, site and a couple of other factors.

Of course, for completely new professionals at the start of their career, this rate per hour will probably be towards the lower end. But, as with any other role, it will increase over time.

But, it always varies on the company, type of job, experience, and a couple of other factors.

Follow Us For Transcription Jobs & News

If you are looking to become a transcriptionist, follow us on our social channels as we often post our job opportunities. That way, you can be the first to hear about and access available work from home projects. We also often post news and other transcription-related content which you will enjoy as an aspiring transcriptionist.

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Additionally, you can complete our online transcription application form on our site by clicking on ‘work with us’ at the bottom of the home page. You will need to fill in some general information including your name, email address, your relevant skills, your expected transcription pay, etc. Then, someone from our transcription team will get back to you in a couple of days by email, so make sure to check your email address is correct. Once any suitable transcription projects are available, you will receive an email with the PO details, the files, and the expected turnaround time.