If you outsource Audio Transcription this post is for you. This post is about the mistakes people commit when outsourcing their transcription work and how to avoid those outsourcing mistakes. Some make you look stupid; some will even cost you money.
Not having a proper file naming convention
When you start outsourcing your transcription work, adopt and maintain an appropriate file naming convention for your audios. This will do away a lot of headaches and confusion later. Try and organize your files and audit your audio files at least weekly. Maintain an Excel document to record all the audios you have outsourced to your transcription provider and those you have not.
Most audio recorders these days, will have a feature that controls the file naming convention. You may try using that or adopt a totally different approach and manually name your files.
I see different types of file naming conventions in my business. Some prefer sequential numbering; some include the date of the recording plus the author’s initials (this is apparently for firms with multiple authors outsourcing to the same transcription service provider); some include a description of some kind mostly related to the content of the recording. There’s no right or wrong with this. So, it’s really up to you how you want to do this. But, definitely do it.
Transcriptionists, or at least I, usually name a transcript after the audio file itself. For example, if I get an audio with the name ABCD.MP3, the transcript will be ABCD.doc. If there are two or more documents, it will be ABCD (1).doc, ABCD (2).doc and so on.
So, if you have two audio files with the same name (with different audio content), it’s confusing – as to how to save the second file or whether or not we’ve transcribe the file, in the first place.
We all want to avoid duplication of work, right? You don’t want to be charged for the same transcription twice.
So to summarize, it’s important to adopt a file naming convention because :
- It minimizes mistakes such as sending the same file twice for transcribing.
- It simplifies the process of documentation and maintaining records for individuals as well as businesses and firms.
- It avoids duplication of work.
- It saves you money and time.
- It makes accounting and invoicing much easier.
Sending the same audio file over and over for transcription
Sometimes even though you have a proper file naming convention, you may still end up sending the same audio file twice or even thrice for transcription. Sending the same file twice may mean paying double for a single transcript. This can be remedied by maintaining a record of files outsourced.
One way to contain the effects of such mistakes is to have an agreement with your transcription provider that duplicate files will not be charged (if work hasn’t commenced). That way, you at least save cost even though you can’t reclaim your time spent sending that file!
Not maintaining records of files
If you’re outsourcing audio transcription you should be maintaining a record of files being outsourced. This will prevent any unwanted issues in invoicing or duplication of work on the part of your transcriber. Record the date a file is outsourced; the length of the file; and also record when you get the transcript back.
Not outsourcing your transcriptions at all!
This is the biggest mistake of all. If you’re not outsourcing your transcriptions either because you employ a secretary (who’s not specialised in transcription or typing) fulltime or because you type your recordings yourself, you’re not taking advantage of the flat world we live in. You’re not optimizing your resources.
Outsourcing transcription is not all about saving money or time (although it does both), it’s more about employing specialists and experts, and getting excellent results. That’s the advantage of outsourcing and globalization. A decade ago when you have to content with a mediocre transcript from a secretary, now you can get excellent transcripts from an expert who specialises in transcription and only pay a fraction of what you might pay a secretary.
Nobody wants to be stupid. You don’t.
This article was originally posted at http://transcriptionpro.net/outsourcing-transcription-mistakes/