Do I have what it takes to succeed in the field of transcription? This is hands down the most common question prospective transcriptionists ask me.
And it’s a very fair question!
The truth of the matter is that not everyone is cut out for this kind of work. It ain’t easy, and it requires some hardcore commitment to master the skill. But in the end, it can really pay off.
If you’ve been asking that same question, wondering if you have what it takes, you’re not alone.
If you’re wondering whether you should jump on the transcription train (or maybe choo-choo off on a different track), here are 9 signs that you might make a great transcriptionist (with the right training, of course!):
Sign #1: You type 60+ words per minute.
Having a great typing speed is an essential skill of a good transcriptionist. The overall consensus is that a typing speed of 70 words per minute is ideal to start out, but I think that can discourage some highly skilled people from considering work as a transcriptionist.
In my experience, people who can type 60+ words per minute can quickly increase their speed with practice, so even if your typing speed is low, don’t be discouraged. The more you do it, the quicker you’ll become. The quicker you become, the higher your earning potential! How’s that for motivation?
Not sure what your typing speed is? Head on over to TypingTest.com to find out. If you think you’re below average, this is an excellent way to practice and build up your speed, too!
Sign #2: You’re a word nerd and tend to find little mistakes annoying.
Transcriptionists are require to turn audio files into written text, so having exceptional English grammar and punctuation skills is super important. If you know the difference between your and you’re; there, their, and they’re; to and too; and other commonly misused words, you are already ahead of the game.
If you’re wanting to pursue transcription, but you feel a bit rusty in this area, not to worry! Any transcription training program worth its salt should have an extensive section on English grammar and punctuation relevant to transcription (And if it doesn’t, turn around and run away! It’s not worth it!)
At Transcribe Anywhere, word use and punctuation are essential parts of our training — cornerstones, even. Punctuation is what makes the transcript easily readable, so it makes sense it’s critical for transcript quality.
Sign #3: You LOVE to research random things on the Internet.
Yes, transcription is a valuable skill that can earn you money! Transcriptionists often have to research names, places, terms, and lots of other information to confirm what they’ve transcribed is accurate. I have learned SO many things just from my research as a transcriptionist.
If you’re a closet Google fanatic like I am, you’ll find this part of the job fun and engaging.
Sign #4: You’re an introvert with an extrovert’s drive to earn money (from home, of course!).
Just because you’re an introvert doesn’t mean you don’t want to make some good cash, right?
Transcription is seriously the dream job for any introvert looking to make a solid income from home — without having to mingle with a ton of people. You might make a great transcriptionist if you’re motivated and ready to work hard to create a reliable income stream from home — no social awkwardness required!
Sign #5: You’re great at meeting deadlines.
This is really important in the transcription world. The quickest way to lose your client is to miss a deadline. Period. It’s just poor form. If you’re someone who enjoys the challenge of working under deadlines, this is the niche for you.
Sign #6: Friends and family have deemed you their English guru and often ask you to proofread and/or edit their work.
If you’ve become the go-to person for all things proofreading in your circle of influence, then chances are you’ve got what it takes. Having a keen eye for detail is an attribute all successful transcriptionists possess. If you already have that skill set in your pocket, why not learn to make some money using it?
Sign #7: You can work at your computer for long periods of time — and actually enjoy it!
Transcription is also a fantastic way for techies to earn a living from home. Computer lovers usually find the transition to transcription a natural one because they spend a lot of their recreational time on the computer already.
Sign #8: You enjoy (and prefer!) working alone.
The work of a transcriptionist is a solo act, and for those of us that enjoy the solitude, it’s a very enjoyable way to make a living. Some social butterflies prefer to work in groups, and if you’re someone who enjoys a more collaborative work environment, transcription might not be for you. But if you like having time to yourself to focus on your work, this is the ideal niche!
Sign #9: You find a lot of personal satisfaction in making people happy.
As with any business, the #1 goal of the transcriptionist is to make their clients happy. There is a deep sense of satisfaction whenever you return a transcript that’s been done on time and done well.
As a transcriptionist, I help business owners grow their business, streamline their communications, optimize their marketing strategies, and SO much more. It’s really brings me a lot of satisfaction knowing that I am helping them the way I do. Also, keep in mind that happy clients are repeat clients, and repeat clients are referring clients — win-win!
So what do you think? Do you think you have what it takes to become a great transcriptionist? Leave a comment and let us know your thoughts (or questions).
NEXT UP: Is there really a demand out there for transcription?! Well, according to these people who hire them, we’d say so!