Balancing being a mom with growing a virtual business
What is it like to work from home as a transcriptionist?

What is it like to work from home as a transcriptionist?

What is it like to work from home as a transcriptionist?

Working from home on a laptop with tea.

I currently work as a contract transcriptionist editor for on online transcription company. They have software which does an initial transcription, and then I make corrections. Some of the jobs have minimal editing. But other jobs have to be completely transcribed when the audio quality is bad.

Why did I become a transcriptionist?

I gave birth to my daughter in 2017 and was laid off from my job shortly afterward. After doing some job hunting, I decided to watch my daughter full-time. But I wanted to work part-time from home on nights and weekends. I also wanted something, initially, where I didn’t need to interact with anyone. Perpetual sleep deprivation hurt my ability to have intelligent conversations. After doing some research, I decided that transcription would be a good fit.

How did I become a transcriptionist?

The first thing I did was apply to several different transcription companies that would hire without experience, including TranscribeMe, Rev and 3PlayMedia. While I waited to hear back, I went ahead and took a transcription course that I found online called Transcribe Anywhere. I heard back from one of the applications when I was through the main part of the course and working through practice jobs. So I took the transcription company’s online transcription tests, passed them, and was able to start working. I then didn’t finish the course, but the first parts of it definitely helped me pass the tests.

How much do I get paid as a transcriptionist?

I make around $8-$12 an hour, depending upon the job. This is a lower rate than what I would be able to get if I were to find and bill clients directly. I also choose only to work a few hours a week so I can focus on blogging and some other work. My transcription work provides just enough to pay for website hosting, graphics software, etc.

What kind of audio do I transcribe?

I prefer to work on academic jobs where I am transcribing class lectures or conference presentations. It feels less like work since I find that content interesting. I’ve also worked on youtube reality episodes, political videos, finance shows, sports clips, market research interviews, news clips, software training, and medical interviews.

How do you know if being a transcriptionist is something you can do?

First, having a good grasp of English vocabulary and grammar is very important. Next, being able to type quickly is also essential. My typing speed is usually between 70-80 words per minute, according to typing speed tests. I also find that good listening comprehension skills and attention to detail is important to produce high-quality work.

Do I enjoy the work of a transcriptionist?

I enjoy how flexible it is. I can work whenever I want and I choose which jobs to do. Some of the content of the jobs is really interesting and I enjoy transcribing them. However, what I like to work on isn’t always available, so sometimes I have to pick jobs that aren’t as interesting.

I also enjoy that I don’t have to go find a client and do that extra work to get going. All the jobs are double checked for quality and they provide feedback, so I am able to improve my work over time. I do think I would make more money and work on more interesting things if I did decide to do get clients directly.

What equipment do you need to be a transcriptionist?

For my current transcription job, I need a computer with internet access, a web browser, and a good headset. I bought this Spectra USB Headset off Amazon that I use and recommend. Express Scribe transcription software is also something that I have and bought for the transcription course I took. I believe you can do most of what you need with the free version. That software is what I would use were I to do some freelancing. I did also buy a transcription pedal, but I decided that I don’t like it – it hurts my foot to use it. I’d rather use keyboard shortcuts than the pedal. You can try these out for yourself, if you’d like, and save with a bundle on Amazon.

Where do I do transcription work?

I prefer to work at a desk in my home office, where I am most comfortable. My home office has a desktop computer with three monitors and a big, comfy office chair. I can also work off of a laptop that I have, and I have done some transcription work while on vacation at the beach with my family and friends.


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