A Guide to Getting the Best Transcript

March 17, 2014 Samantha

If you have decided to use a transcription company to type up your audio or video files, chances are you are hoping for a transcript that is delivered on time, is accurate and well laid out. Although you may not realise it, as a transcription client, you have a huge influence on the quality of your completed transcript, so take a seat and let us explain why!

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Contemplating the perfect transcript

Audio Quality

One of the most important influences on the outcome of your completed transcript is the quality of the audio you provide your transcription company with. No matter how much training or experience a typist has, they can only transcribe what can be heard. So if your audio file is filled with background noise, feedback or constant over speaking, it follows that you will not receive a transcript with the same standard as a client who has provided a well-recorded sound file. The cost of having a low quality recording transcribed is also much higher than transcribing a good quality one, as the typist has to spend many extra hours listening and trying to decipher inaudible sections of the dialogue. We have many pages on how best to avoid recording low quality sound, so please feel free to browse our website for more information.

Video Quality

If speed is of the essence, then it is important to think about file sizes. Videos tend to be much larger than audio files and because of this can be much more cumbersome and time consuming to send. Unless you require burnt on subtitles or captions, it is not necessary to send large, high quality videos to your chosen transcription company, as we are relying on audio quality, not the picture, to create your transcript. It is also advisable that you send videos that are downloadable, rather than links to online streams of video, as this is also more time consuming to download into your transcription company’s transcription software. We are happy to work with both video streams and hard copies of videos; however, these methods of video transcription are more time consuming that sending smaller, downloadable videos.

Transcript Styles

Choosing the right transcription style is imperative if you are looking for the perfect transcript. So before you send your audio or video to your chosen transcription company, consider what you need your transcript to include. For instance, do you need an intelligent verbatim transcript or strict verbatim? Do you need time codes or time stamped transcription services? Would you prefer a video transcript that includes visual descriptions or onscreen captions? Whatever your requirements, it is important to let your transcription company know exactly what transcription service you require if you want a transcript that is most useful and meets your needs.

Transcript Deadlines

There are many factors that affect a transcript deadline, so it may be worth taking note of these in case you find yourself in need of a fast turnaround on your transcript. As a general rule, intelligent verbatim is the least time-consuming transcription style and generally speaking it will take an experienced typist around 4 hours to transcribe 1 hours worth of a one to one interview or dictation. If you require strict verbatim, time coding, visual descriptions, subtitles or captions, the turnaround time of your transcript will increase. Similarly, if you provide your chosen transcription company with a multiple speaker audio (such as a group interview, meeting or focus group) and need each speaker to be identified, this will also increase the time it takes to complete and return your transcripts. This also applies to highly technical and medical audio and video files, as they often need additional research.

Transcript Complexity

If you have an audio or video file that is highly technical or medical in nature, then it is very important that you provide your chosen transcription company with as much information as possible. Sending your transcription company a concise and accurate list of important terms, names, company names and in fact, any relevant information, will help to improve your transcript accuracy and will reduce the need for the transcriptionist to do additional research, therefore speeding up the turnaround time of your transcripts.

So as you can see, transcription clients have a huge impact on the quality, turnaround and accuracy of their final transcripts.

If you would like more information about the transcription services that we provide or would like a quote on any of our online secretarial services, feel free to email, call or complete our online enquiry form. We are always happy to help.

,

Samantha

Transcriptionist and Virtual Assistant.

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