How is transcription done?
By: Champak Pol
Project Manager at Hi-Tech
This article looks at what a transcriber does and how it is done.
Now a day’s most transcribing is done for digital audio or video
recordings, files. This primarily is needed to convert voice, speech or data
into electronic documents.
While starting out with a transcription project one comes across several
difficulties, one being very common — the need to change back and forth
between programs. This is so because while transcribing, the
transcriptionist has to stop, play, go back, go forward and rewind and
pause, not one time but several times.
For instance, on one hand you have to enter text and on the other hand
you have to play an audio or a video; this is where the problem arises.
The issue can however be solved by making use of hotkeys. Hot keys
enable you to transcribe without taking off your fingers from the
keyboard. This makes your work less tedious and fast.
Few steps to watch out for before starting a transcription project:
• Log on to an online transcription service: Decide first if you want to
sign-up for an accurate transcription service that lets you upload your
video or audio directly on its concerned website.
• Conduct a research. It is must! Before you start, you should already
have your research done on charges per minute of audio/video with
respect to different transcription companies. The transcription cost differs
from service to service. Ensure the transcripts are manually generated
and not computer generated because at times computer generated
transcripts are not very precise.
• Outsource transcription to companies with native English speakers
as their employees. Hiring offshore companies is indeed a good option
as their transcription turnaround time is fast. Language plays a major role.
There are cases where accented audio or video transcription needs to be
done. Then, companies with native English speaking employees benefit
the most here as compared to other companies with non-English speaking
• Click and upload your audio/video: All you have to do here is click on
the upload button and get your audio/video file uploaded. Once you have
your options clear in mind, you can easily go ahead.
• Now add your file (audio or video) from your computer: Click on the
‘Add’ option button.
• It is time you click on the ‘Start upload’ button after choosing the
• The size of the file being uploaded will decide the time required for
upload the files: This means you have to be patient enough till the
uploading gets over.
• Use of Express Scribe, a transcription tool, is advisable: It is a
professional audio player that helps increase the productivity and better
transcription turn-around. Using this tool, you can easily speedup your
• Look for suitable transcription software: Ensure the word processing
software is updated. A foot pedal will also be of immense use to you. The
transcription software is primarily designed to work in sync with
professional foot pedals. These pedals are controls that are set up for
rewind, fast-forward and play/pause. These are suitable for windows and
Mac OS X.
• Focus on work: This ensures quality transcription and reduced burden
while editing transcripts and proof-reading.
• Good quality stereo headsets are a must. Use of latest transcription
equipment should be made compulsory for transcribers. A transcription
company should make its employees work in conducive environment.
• Make use of Auto correct on Microsoft Word or Quick Correct: These
tools help you cut down on the number of times you hit hotkeys during
typing and thus enhance your speed.
• Always work in compliance with HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability