Transcription Jobs That Take Beginners: The Ultimate Guide

Searching for a transcription side gig? We’ve got you covered, here’s a list of some online transcription jobs that are perfect for beginners.

General transcription jobs are ideal for when you are first starting out. They don’t require any specialized training or education. But it will take a little practice to get up to speed and to start earning money.

Transcription Jobs for Beginners

When you are first starting, there may not be steady jobs available. You may have to work for more than one company to get enough work. Most transcriptionists (myself included) have contracts with multiple companies, so they will always have some work.

Keep in mind that companies who hire beginners usually have a lower pay rate, since they are willing to hire beginners.

Almost every company requires you to take a skills test before you are hired.

Remember that transcription typically pays per audio hour. That doesn’t mean the number of hours worked, it means the length of the file. So if a file pays $45 an audio hour and it is 1 hour long, you will receive $45 for the entire file.

Depending on how fast you type, the quality of the audio, and if it’s a super technical job that requires a ton of research, one hour of audio can take anywhere from between three and six hours.

How Much Can I Make As A Work from Home Transcriptionist?

Rates vary, but on average, the median annual income for an experienced general transcriptionist is $45,000. Legal and medical transcriptionists make a bit more.

How To Improve Your Skills as a Transcriptionist

If you think you have all the skills necessary, then dive right in and start applying. But if your feeling on the fence, check out this blog post with a list of transcription courses. Otherwise, there are plenty of websites that offer typing training online for free. Other resources, such as Grammarly, are also great tools for transcriptionists.

Transcription Gear

transcription jobs require the right equipment

Below is a list of some of the equipment needed to get started in online transcription. Don’t worry about getting the best of the best when you first get started. Work with what you got and then upgrade once your skills/earnings improve.

  • Computer With A High-Speed Internet Connection: The most essential equipment necessary for transcribing is a high-speed internet connection, dial-up will not work. When you are trying to meet a deadline, the download time can make a big difference.
  • Transcription Software: There are quite a few available on the market. Many are free or relatively inexpensive. I prefer to use FTW Transcriber (read my review here) or Express Scribe. Both have free versions, but there is other software out there.
  • Headphones: Most transcriptionists prefer stethoscope-style headphones, and they are usually pretty cheap. I like my over the ear WordSmith headphones, but I didn’t upgrade to those until I got serious about transcription.
  • Microsoft Word: Microsoft Word is the preferred software, it’s used in the guides and courses for transcriptionists.

Online Transcription Jobs

1. GoTranscript

GoTranscript is perfect for those just getting a foot in as a transcriptionist. They pay high for a company that takes beginners. Most of their files are in 5 or 10 minute chunks, which is just right for when you are first starting out.

1. Accutran Global

Accutran Global offers transcription jobs for beginners. The work at Accutran is fast-paced and requires you to pass a skills test to get started. They pay around $0.005 per word for basic audio and $0.0066 per word for more difficult audio, and payment is made on the 15th of each month. Work is available to citizens of the US and Canada.

2. Appenscribe

Appenscribe does hire newbies, but you need to obtain some form of training to be successful on this platform. The number of projects you receive will be directly related to your quality of work. You can earn around $10 per audio hour according to the forums on the Appenscribe website.

3. Tigerfish

One of the older resources for transcribers, having been around since 1989, tigerfish offers online transcription jobs for beginners.  You have to complete about three, five-minute tests (that take an average of twenty minutes to complete) before being hired. They typically pay 3 to 4 cents for every line transcribed.

4. Daily Transcription

As the name implies, this resource submits transcriptions on the same day. So work here tends to be done at a faster rate. There is no fixed amount of work to be had, and you can’t rely on just this site to stay busy.

They offer different transcription services, including legal, entertainment, financial, and they always need transcribers. You will need to submit a resume and pass a test before you can transcribe for them. 

5. Transcribe Me

Transcribe Me offers online transcription jobs for beginners as they do not require much to get started.  To get in, you take a short, easy test that is graded automatically and if you pass, you working right away.

Don’t worry about failing as you can always retake the test after 24 hours. They pay 20 dollars per audio hour. 

6. Scribie

This site is perfect for freelancers as it offers the most flexibility.  Although at $10 per audio hour, the pay is relatively low, Scribie also provides a $10 bonus for doing more than three audio hours every month.

7. Rev

Rev is an established company, and they offer online transcription jobs for beginners, although their skills test can be challenging to pass. According to the site, some of their remote transcription jobs pay over $200 monthly.

8. Quicktate

Quicktate is one of the most respected companies that offer transcription jobs for beginners. The pay ranges from 1/4 to 1/2 cent per word transcribed. Quicktate requires a background check before hiring you, the cost for this is $15.

9. Bam

Bam offers entertainment transcription services, legal, corporate, finance, research, and general transcription services. You are considered a contractor when you pass the skills test. To apply, send an email to [email protected]

10. Birch Creek Communications

Birch Creek currently has openings in their transcription department for corporate transcriptionists. They pay by the audio minute and pay ranges from .40/audio min to 1.75/audio min. The rate of pay will depend on the quality of your work.

11. Crowd Surf

CrowdSurf is a community of freelance transcriptionists that create captions for deaf, and second language viewers. You will find short transcription tasks here, and they pay instantly.

Want to improve your chances of getting a good-paying job as a general transcriptionist? This FREE Mini-Course offers expert tips and advice for transcription newbies. Enroll in there Free 7-lesson mini-course to learn more about transcription, the demand for transcriptionists, the skill involved, and whether or not it’s a right career choice for you.

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Lauren is a work from home Transcriptionist and loves the freedom freelancing brings her. She is currently learning about web design and graphic design and hopes to branch out into branding/brand management. In her free time, she makes her own jewelry.

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