How to Work a Freelance Transcriptionist,

A general transcriptionist listens the recorded material and transcribes what they hear into a readable document. Unlike medical transcriptionist, you don’t need any special training to become a general transcriptionist. You just need the ability to listen well, excellent typing skills and a few basic tools. Working at home as a freelance transcriptionist gives you the freedom to earn some extra money while working as little or as much as you want.

Tools Required

Most of the tools you will need to become a freelance transcriptionist you probably already have or can get for very little money. In addition to a computer and keyboard, you will also need a good pair of headphones and transcription software. While it is possible to type while listening to the audio recording on your mp3 player or the default audio program on your computer, this is not the most efficient way to transcribe. Transcription software makes it possible to slow down, rewind and fast forward the recording with the touch of a single key or pedal so that you spend less time fiddling with controls and more time typing. You can get a special pedal to use with your transcription software or use certain keys on your keyboard. Express Scribe is one type of transcription software that you can download for free.

What to Charge

There are several different ways to charge for your transcription services. You could bill your clients according to how long the recording is, how many words you type or how long it takes you to do the work. You can also charge higher fees if the recording is on a cassette tape, of poor quality or involving more than one person because these interviews are often harder to transcribe. Research how much transcriptionists charge in your area and set your rates accordingly. Depending on how much experience you have and the level of service you offer, increase or decrease your rates from the average.

Find Clients

In order to succeed as a freelance transcriptionist, you will need to actively look for clients. Begin by advertising your services in your local paper, in online message boards and around your community. Approach local businesses that might need transcription services and give them a pamphlet and business card. You could also hang up flyers around nearby colleges. Many students conduct interviews as part of their graduate school work and need to have these transcribed. You could even offer a student discount to encourage them to hire you.

Offer Quality Services

Make sure you stay in contact with your clients and follow through professionally, accurately and in a timely manner. Your success as a freelance transcriptionist is directly related to how well you do your job. A satisfied client is not only likely to come to you again if they need transcription services, but they will also tell their associates about you. Word of mouth is a fantastic way to get new clients. You could also offer a discount on your client’s next transcription order to encourage return business.

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