Work-from-Home as a Transcriptionist: 10 Online Transcription Companies that Pay

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Are you a whiz with spelling and grammar and can you type a decent 60 words per minute (WPM)? If yes, then there are several transcription companies that could use your services.

What does transcription entail? At its core, transcription involves typing out recorded messages created by universities, organizations, media companies, etc. into readable text. For example, consider the closed captioning you see on your TV screen while watching a movie. All that text had to be typed out by someone listening to the movie dialogue.

Not sure how fast you can type? Test your abilities at a site like TypingTest.com. You can also train yourself to type faster; ideally, you want to have a speed of 75+ words/minute.

Online transcription does come with a few (though not many) prerequisites, but they are not at all like the in-depth prerequisites for medical transcription. Aside from an attention to linguistic detail and fast typing speed, you’ll want to invest in the following technologies:

Fast Internet: You’ll need a fast Internet connection in order to download and listen to recorded files.

Transcription software: You’ll need to download and use some kind of transcription software provided by your hiring company.

Transcription and dictation foot pedal: Some transcriptionists make use of a foot pedal that acts to slow down (or speed up) dialog so that it can be transcribed in real-time.

So, which companies are looking for transcriptionists? Here is a list of 7 places hiring remote transcriptionists:

3PlayMedia

This Boston-based company got its start in 2007 and regularly hires both in-house and remote transcript editors. According to Glassdoor, transcript editors earn from $18-$19/hour.

As a member of 3Play, you’ll be able to set your own schedule; also, communication between the highers up and their employees is reported to be very good. Otherwise, you’ll be left alone and expected to turn in your work on time (i.e., there is little to no micromanagement). Overall, there are few complaints about this company and its management, and contractor feedback is positive overall.

iScribed

This company is based in Georgia and offers different transcription services to various clients, including editing and language translation. As an iScriber, you can expect your hourly pay to start at $15/hour; depending on your project turnaround time, however, you could end up earning as much as $25/hour.

Net Transcripts

This company deals primarily with law enforcement and criminal justice transcription, so you will need to pass a background check before getting started. Common complaints on Indeed include lower than average pay (i.e., about $15/hour); however, there is plenty of work available. Net Transcripts has been around since 1988.

Quicktate

This company is good for transcriptionists who don’t yet have a lot of experience in the field or can’t do hours of audio transcription. With Quicktate, you’ll be transcribing short voicemail messages that span several minutes. The pay for this work is a quarter penny per transcribed word.

Once you become comfortable with this format, you could be promoted to Quicktate’s sibling site, iDictate, which pays half a penny per transcribed word and offers longer assignments.

Rev

This company offers a number of client services, including captioning, subtitles, translation and transcription. Once you pass the qualifier exam, you are free to take as few or as many transcription assignments as you’d like. Payment ranges from $24-$39 per audio hour and is sent via Paypal every two weeks.

SpeakWrite

This Austin, Texas company provides legal, law enforcement, protective services and general transcription services. As an SW transcriptionist, you should expect to earn $11-$13/hour, although your rate will increase as you become more proficient at transcribing. Glassdoor reviews of this company note both its low and high workloads, so my suspicion is that the company occasionally overhires when there is too much work.

Tigerfish

This company has been around since 1989 and hires entry-level as well as more experienced transcriptionists. The company doesn’t advertise its pay rate; however, Glassdoor reports that transcriptionists earn half a penny per word.

TranscribeMe

TranscribeMe is a fairly well-known transcription company, which means you’ll probably be placed on its waiting list once you pass its short transcription test. After getting hired, your projects will consist of transcribing short audio files that average about 10 seconds. That translates to earning $20/hour if you complete a sufficient number of files.

The good news about TranscribeMe is that you’ll need no special software to complete your work, and weekly payments will be deposited into your Paypal account.

Ubiqus

This company hires for all kinds of transcription work, including corporate, medical and legal. They also perform a lot of foreign language translation and interpretation work.

According to salary disclosures on Glassdoor, work-at-home transcriptionists earn up to $20/hour with Ubiqus. However, to achieve this level of pay, you will need a typing speed of at least 70 WPM. A transcription qualification test must be taken and passed before getting hired.

WayWithWordsJobs

This company hires transcriptionists from all around the world, and it states on its own website that it pays at a rate of $24 to $82.80 per audio hour. This means that your actual hourly rate will vary depending on how fast you type.

Payment is sent via Paypal. While the company doesn’t require that you purchase specialized software or a foot pedal, it does suggest getting headphones.

How to get hired as a transcriptionist

A typing speed of 60 WPM or better is just one qualification you’ll need to possess in order to get hired as a transcriptionist. Other helpful qualifications include bilingual (or even trilingual) capabilities, because many transcription companies work with international film producers to translate movies, documentaries, training videos, etc. Attention to detail is a must, so double-checking your submitted transcript for typos during your interview will assure your hiring team that you can produce error-free, quality work on demand.

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8 Comments

  1. So I set up with a bunch of these and really enjoy them. I also use CrowdSurf, which is not listed and always has work. While the pay rate for CrowdSurf seems to be a little lower than these (and you need to get signed up on Workmarket as well).

    I have applied to Rev twice and ensured that my application was absolutely perfect, only to be rejected twice. While I might have done something to hurt my application somewhere along the way, the fact that many qualified transcriptionists are rejected at Rev for no real reason would make me shy away from them. They do allow applicants to reapply after 45 days, but their lax style guide really gives no indication of what they’re looking for.

    If I do get accepted when I reapply (I’m digging my heels in on this one), I’ll be happy to supply a better personal review!

    Reply
  2. What a good amount of companies you have here. As I was going through them I veered off and applied for one. I will definitely bookmark this post as you have some really good and what looks like legitimate sites to check out so thanks heaps for that and thanks for this article on them!
    Cheers, Sharon

    Reply
  3. I’ve always had interest in doing transcribing for side money but it seemed impossible to find legit work doing that. I see some good opportunities for me to pay my bills while building my online business! Thanks so much. I just applied for the iScribed one and I’m hoping to hear from them soon.

    Reply
    1. Steve Razinski says:

      You’re very welcome Gabriela! I wish you the best of luck in getting hired!

  4. This site is great! I know that I have looked at transcription jobs in the past and there are just so many out there. I like the fact that you have done the research for the consumer and have let them know your results. I really like the “Free Jobs Directory” page. I also like that you have an “Archive” page so that people can see what’s been posted before.

    Reply
    1. Steve Razinski says:

      Thanks JJ! Yeah, our archives date back to 2007 and there are quite a few posts in there. Glad you enjoyed some of them!

  5. Although some sites accept applicants worldwide, they require 100% result in their test. So non-native speakers may find it almost impossible to get in. I personally tried and failed 5 times in Rev, but fortunately got selected in Gotranscript.

    Reply
    1. Would you recommend Gotranscript after a little time put in there? I’m always looking to branch out and will gladly give that a try if you’ve got good things to say!

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