by Nicole Dean
If you're looking for a business to start from home quickly and easily then working as a general transcriptionist could be just what you're looking for. A transcriptionist is someone who who types verbatim (word-for-word) from an audio recording. This online business idea won't require much in terms of office space, equipment, or start up costs and could be perfect for someone that has accurate, fast, typing skills.
Picking out your transcription equipment will take a little bit of investigation. Take a look online at the computer programs and good quality headsets available. The actual transcription program will have the settings you need to keep the verbal recording under your control. A must-have is a good headset that enables you to clearly understand the words you are trying to type. So, let's take a look at what else you need to know.
So, you're a talented typist, both in speed and accuracy, you possess good hearing, and you have a good understanding of proper grammar and spelling. So far, so good. You also like to work with deadlines and without supervision. Good. But, there is also a physical aspect of transcribing documents which you'll want to consider. You will be typing big documents and sitting at your computer for long periods of time. Can you handle the stress on your back, hands, wrists, and eyeballs? If you're okay with that then you've come through all those considerations just fine. Now, let's look at how to get started.
Training in Transcription: When you get the right training in transcription, you will save yourself a lot of frustration! You don't want to fail because you didn't do your homework, do you? Before you start your transcription business, spend some of your time browsing through online courses, with your first stop being the Transcription Starter Kit.
Complete Business Plan: Your new business, like all successful businesses, will require a well written business plan. Let your business plan reflect your excitement and tell the world who you are. Start with a straight-forward outline of the services you will offer, then your vision, your marketing plan, your financial plan, and your plans for growth. This not only is a good exercise in keeping your focus, but your business plan will be an significant tool to track your goals and your progress.
Your Home Office and Special Equipment: Let's start with your physical space, your home office. You should have a comfortable space to work, yes, but be sure it's quiet, too. Along with a good computer, you will want special transcription software, but, don't be scared. There are programs to fit every financial situation. Begin on the internet and research the computer programs and headsets available to you. Your computer program will allow you to reverse the document, move it forward, and keep the recording under your control. You'll also have the ability to change settings for speed, volume, and tone, so don't worry that you won't get every word down accurately. Let's not forget the headset! Please do yourself a favor and invest in a great headset. The money spent now will save you a lot of frustration down the road. Being able to hear the spoken words easily, and understand the words without struggling, is priceless when you're trying to pump out documents on a deadline.
Marketing Yourself: Some people like to join with national transcription companies so the work comes to them. However, if you are a good networker and don't mind selling yourself, you may want to find your own clients and work directly with them. With podcasts popping up all over the internet - and teleseminars spreading like wildfire, you'll have a huge list of people to contact with your services.
Website For Your Business: Besides your hard work, your new and growing transcription business depends on a great website. Use it to let the outside world know that you have openings and ready to work! You will be listing your services and letting clients know how to contact you. If website design is not your forte, please hire someone to develop a professional website for you. The cost is minimal when compared to the client reaction you will get from happy testimonials and other client referrals. Keep in mind that your website is your professional face, so please save your personal or cutesy web stuff for the a personal blog. Your satisfied clients will always be ready and willing to refer other clients your way if you make your website easy for them to use and respond to.
It's good to know that one of the fastest growing jobs in the US is in the transcription service business. According to the US Department of Labor, statistics show that transcriptionist jobs are growing at a higher than average rate. If a little research and some hard work is a challenge you are ready to take on, a career as a transcriptionist may be exactly what you're looking for. Is it time for you to dig in and create your own home-based business? Well, there's no time like the present to find out!
Recommended Additional Resource:
To find out exactly what it takes to start a transcription business, step-by-step, sign up to receive your Transcription Starter Pack. You’ll find out how to get clients, set your prices and grow your business.