Transcribers need excellent listening, typing, and proofreading skills. You also need reliable equipment that allows you to complete your work without delay or error. You should also familiarize yourself with the terminology of the subject matter you’ll be transcribing. Here are some great tools for transcribers that will help you be successful even if you are just starting out.
#1 – Eliminate Distractions
The most basic and crucial tool you need is silence. Having a designated place that you can work free of distraction and noise is essential to a transcriber. You need to multi-task to complete your transcriptions, so don’t put anything additional on your plate. Remove electronic devices, turn off televisions and radios, mute alerts, and position yourself away from doors and windows if possible. Don’t invite pets, children, or friends into your work area while you are working. You need to be focused and noise or distractions will only make your work twice as hard and take twice as long.
#2 – Workstation
It isn’t necessary to spend a ton of money on your computer set up. It is important that the tools you have work well. You will need a reliable computer, internet connection, and software for entering your transcription as well as listening to audio files. Some of these tools may be supplied or specified by your employer. It is up to you to make sure that everything is functional and running at optimal levels for success. Audio players such as Windows Media Player and Real Player are free and easy to use.
#3 – Transcribers Speed and Accuracy
The faster and more accurate your typing skills are the better quality of work you will produce. There are some free resources to increase your speed and accuracy. One of the easiest and most popular tools for transcribers to use is here. You’ll begin after one click of the mouse and the site will automatically calculate your speed and errors. A fun online resource to help with different skills such as keeping your eyes off the keyboard, typing with audio, and increasing speed is here. If you’ll be typing many numbers or figures, this is a great resource to stretch your skills.
#4 – Proofing
It is important to present work that is error-free. Spelling mistakes can leave your work looking sloppy. Instead of reading through your work over and over, get some help with easy to use tools that are completely free. The most obvious are the tools within most programs you already use. Spelling and Grammar checks are available within most basic programs such as Microsoft Word. Programs, like Grammarly, offer advanced proofing that is super easy to use.
#5 – Platform
If your employer does not supply or specify a program to use for your transcription, there is an excellent free tool for transcribers that can help make the process smoother. This application combines the audio and editing tools making it easier for you to start, stop, pause, fast-forward, or rewind all on one screen. It also has its own auto-save feature to remove the worry of losing your work due to the unforeseen.
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