If you’re searching for an online typing job, transcription is one work from home job where people convert their skills into dollars.

In this post, you’ll learn everything you need to know about working from home as a transcriptionist. We also have a big list of transcription jobs you can do from home to make money in your spare time!

What is Transcription?

Transcription is the process of taking a live or recorded audio file and converting it into a written document. The audio can be from lectures, interviews, sermons, podcasts, webinars, videos, or any other form of recorded speech.

Why do people convert these recordings into text?

Some professionals are too busy to type their own work, so they use transcribers.

People with hearing difficulties may require subtitles or written documentation to understand what’s happening in a movie or TV show. Transcriptionists create documents and captions to assist these people.

Another reason is personal preference. Let’s say a business owner records a video, but many of their clients prefer reading over watching a video. They transcribe the video into a written transcript so those clients can consume the content in their desired format.

Transcription Types

There are three main transcription specialties: general, legal, and medical transcription.

General Transcription

As the name suggests, general transcription does not focus on any specific niche. Instead, it involves converting all kinds of audio, like business recordings, interviews, and phone conversations into text. In general transcription, no specialized knowledge or terminology of the subject is required.

At times, people need legal recordings transcribed into written documents. These may be court proceedings from judges, lawyers, or advocates. As a legal transcriptionist, you’ll need to know legal terminology and produce work without any errors to work in this speciality of transcription effectively.

Medical Transcription

Like legal professionals, transcribers in the medical industry will transcribe audio files for doctors, surgeons, psychiatrists, and nutritionists who need their recordings converted into written documents. Medical transcribers need to know medical terminology and acronyms that are common within the medical field.

One thing to note about medical transcription is the demand and pay rates for medical transcriptionists have decreased as medical facilities have switched over to electronic medical records. I do not recommend this career path as medical transcription is a dying field.

Qualifications Needed for Transcription Jobs

If you have the right skills and knowledge, online transcription jobs are a great work from home opportunity! Here are the qualifications you’ll need to start working as a transcriber.

Perfect Command of the English Language

This is self-explanatory. Correct punctuation, spelling, and grammar are necessary to be a transcriber. In short, petty errors such as confusing “it’s” with “its” or not knowing when to use a comma or colon should be avoided at all costs. Finally, it’s an advantage if you can distinguish between the US and UK commands of English.

Keen Listening Skills

The types of audio you will encounter in transcription will vary significantly in quality, accent, speed, and complexity. As such, one should listen keenly and get the words right.

Good Research Skills

In some instances, you may receive audio that has non-English words or words that you’ve never heard of before. To create an accurate script, it will be necessary to look some words up. Often names of towns, people, and things may not be clear in the audio. By taking the extra time to research the unknowns, you’ll improve the quality and acceptability of your work.

Fast and Accurate Typist

When you’re a transcriber, speed is critical to your success. Transcribing one audio file may produce hundreds, sometimes even thousands of words. To be successful, you’ll need a typing speed of at least 40-60 WPM (words per minute) for most transcription jobs. The faster you can type, the more money you can earn in most cases. However, it’s important to note that speed should not compromise your accuracy.

Required Equipment and Training For Transcription Jobs

If you have a good command of the English language and you’re a fast and accurate typist, you may be able to learn transcription without taking a course. If your English, grammar, and typing skills are rusty, taking an online course can help prepare you for this career.

For medical and legal transcription, you’ll need to take a course to learn the proper terminology.

I recommend Transcribe Anywhere’s courses if you’re interested in learning general