There are some transcription mistakes that clients should avoid at any time, and in any circumstances, but there are also some that are particular to the years 2020 and 2021 when many more people are working from home.
Some of the more important mistakes that clients should avoid at all times are as follows;
- Inferior equipment
A good quality recording depends on good quality sound. There are recorders available that will filter out background noise, and this makes a transcription infinitely more accurate and easier. Using headphones with a microphone will help clarity and that can result in higher transcript accuracy too.
A good recording can also help eliminate mistakes in the transcription, through no fault of the transcriptionist, but due to background noise, interference and so on, which may end up being costly. Remember, the clearer the audio, the more accurate the transcription. Transcriptionists do have software for ‘cleaning’ audio, but there is only so much this can do.
- Failing to provide supporting documentation
Many companies and fields of business use terms that are unique to them. If these are common, and correct, a transcriptionist can find them with a little research, but often these are industry specific jargon that is not easy to identify outside of that field. If you have any supporting paperwork, references, resource materials, along with authority sites that can help the transcriptionist, be sure to send these along with the audio. If a transcriptionist has to do their own research this can increase costs and delay the time for delivering the transcription.
- A recording check
It only takes a few seconds to check that the recording equipment is set up correctly and working properly. Failure to do this can result in no recording whatsoever, or an inaudible one. At best a recording may be partially audible and partially not, which of course will mean you only get a partial transcription back.
Mistakes that apply to lockdown or ‘the new norm’;
- Children in the background
You might be surprised to learn how many times we at EQ Transcription Services receive recordings with children or babies playing, crying or talking in the background. At times you may be so used to this you don’t even hear it, but it will cause serious upset to your recording and therefore your transcription. Out transcriptionists do not know that your child is talking to their doll, and may believe it is part of the business recording.
When an audio recording of a meeting is made where the participants are each in their own homes, often the volume levels of speech are not the same. Try and ensure that each person has their volume levels such that they can be clearly heard, or if they cannot raise them, that they speak a little louder.
- One at a Time
When everyone is present in the same room, courtesy seems to dictate everyone waits until one person is finished speaking before they start, at least a good part of the time. With video meetings this appears to have gone out the window and you will often get more than one person speaking at the same time. This makes for a messy recording, a difficult and possibly inaccurate or incomplete transcript.
Basically, it is all common sense. The more you help us the better for all concerned.