Speed and accuracy are the two most important things in a transcriptionist’s job. When you work faster, you get more work done, and you can accept more projects. This means more money for you. Accuracy is, of course, more important than transcribing interviews fast. You can lose clients if you inaccurately transcribe the tapes sent to you.
In Phoenix, Arizona, court reporters use stenography to record court proceedings. In stenography, a court reporter or a transcriber will use shorthand to take dictation. This increases speed and the brevity of writing compared to using longhand. The stenographer will turn these shorthand notes into longhand ones later so that anyone who needs to review the court proceedings will be able to understand them. Stenography is used by court reporters all over the country. If you don’t have the time to learn stenography, you can simply follow these tips for an easier time transcribing:
Use the Right Equipment
If your laptop or computer is lagging, it might mean that there’s not enough space on your hard drive or your processor is acting up. Transcribing is harder when your laptop lags because you need to change windows constantly, and that requires a bit of work from your processor. You should also invest in high-quality headphones so that you can hear the audio clearly. The headphones should have noise-cancellation features so that you can adjust it according to the quality of the audio.
Have you heard about a transcription foot pedal? It stops and starts an audio file. A foot pedal is more effective than “hotkeys.” It connects via USB and has been proven to be faster than using trackpad and hotkeys.
Install the Transcribing Tools and Software
There are many free transcription programs that you can use. Good transcription software will allow you to listen, rewind, forward, slow down, and speed up the audio. You can do this without needing a mouse or a trackpad. The “hotkeys” will do the trick. InqScribe, Express Scribe, and MacSpeech Scribe are some of the most popular transcription programs.
Utilize Correction Tools
Thankfully, you are free to use correction tools such as Grammarly to correct grammatical errors and suggest more comprehensible sentence structures. Remember not to use the auto-correct function because transcriptions need to be verbatim. This means that you cannot change the way a sentence is constructed, but you can make suggestions and put those in open-close parentheses.
Design Your Space Ergonomically
Your workstation should be comfortable for the position of your body and your wrists, hands, and fingers. Your chair should be ergonomic so that your posture won’t be affected even if you spend hours transcribing audio files. Learn the best position for your legs, back, and neck because aside from your fingers, these are the body parts that will suffer the most.
The key to transcribing faster and more accurately is a lot of practice. If you practice, you will learn touch typing, which means that you won’t have to look at the keyboard when typing. You can type and check the screen for any errors as you go. Since you know the placement of the rows of letters and numbers instinctively, you will have an easier time transcribing audio and video files.