In today's economy, launching your own transcription company can be a savvy move. You can make your own hours and negotiate rates with clients directly. In addition, you won't have a boss leering over your shoulder. However, making the transition without first having all the necessary education, supplies and clients lined up can lead you to a rocky start. Here's how to start your business off on the right foot.
While anyone with the necessary skills can offer their services as a transcriptionist, knowledge of the formatting and language is crucial. For example, medical transcription services require a vast knowledge of anatomical terms and procedures, as well as the various types of notes such as follow-up, emergency care, pre-surgical and post-surgical notes, to name a few. Many companies that send work to independent contractors require either a certificate in transcription or the equivalent of several years of experience.
While it's possible for a very fast typist to do audio transcription without a foot pedal, very few do so. The person dictating may sneeze, mispronounce a word or slur their words together. With a foot pedal, you can simply rewind the audio and listen again. Without one, you will have to take your hands from the keys and use the mouse to rewind the audio playback. This will soon become irritating and slow down your transcribing. You will also need a reliable computer, several pairs of your preferred headphones, a simple spreadsheet to track your earnings and some office supplies such as a notebook and pens.
While one doctor's office may give you enough work, they could decide to retire or hire another company at a moment's notice. For this reason, many small business owners will do transcription as an independent contractor for several firms. You will be in control of your hours and who you work for, but can draw work from a larger pool than if you had solicited clients directly.
Opening your own business can be scary at first, but it is also very rewarding in terms of monetary gains and flexibility. By having the right experience or education, supplies, and clients lined up, you can have a successful work at home job from the comfort of your home office.