A Look at Some of the Industries that Use Transcription Services Heavily

transcription services in TorontoTranscription services in Toronto have seen long-term steady growth which shows no sign of slowing down. Even in times of economic stress, these services remain popular, as they provide accurate and time-saving solutions to those who need to use their time in other ways. For most businesses and organizations, it makes no sense to spend time transcribing their own meetings and discussions, when for an affordable price, they can have it done quickly and accurately by a professional. This applies across the board – from small businesses and self-employed people, right up to the biggest corporations and government organizations.

Which Industries Rely the Most on Transcription Services in Toronto?

As mentioned, transcription services in Toronto are used by a wide cross-section of our city’s businesses and organizations. Some of these firms might only make use of these services once or twice a year, whereas others send large amounts of work to be processed on a daily basis. For certain industries, transcription has become such an important cog in the machine that it has become hard to imagine how they would continue to function without it – not without significant problems and disruption, one imagines. Among those industries most reliant on transcription services in Toronto are:

Law firms – Unsurprisingly, law firms rely a lot on transcription. Countless conversations – on the telephone, in meetings, recorded on camera, and so on – need to be transcribed accurately and presented professionally. These documents may be used in court and as the basis of contracts and other legal documents, so there is no room for error. Automated transcription software cannot provide the level of quality required by law firms, and so they rely heavily on professional services.

City and Government Agencies – The government, as a whole, has found that it is cheaper and more efficient, on the whole, to outsource transcription work. As with law firms, they have a high volume of work which needs to be transcribed accurately, which can also be of a sensitive nature. Professional services have the expertise to deal with specialist fields, and give a quick turnaround with accurate results.

Large Corporations and Multinational Organizations – Large firms with a global presence and NGOs tend to conduct many of their meetings using videoconferencing software. The transcriptions of these meetings and conversations can be recorded easily and then submitted to a professional transcription firm, which can then supply them with the written transcriptions of what was said.

As globalization seems to continue inexorably, and businesses try to become leaner and more efficient, it seems that transcription services will inevitably continue to grow. It’s not only large businesses and organizations making use of these services, either. Even sole traders such as handymen and craftsmen are finding it useful to have agreements and contracts drawn up based on the transcription of conversations – it both saves time and gives both parties added security. So, it seems that transcription services will be around for many more years to come.

Why Transcribing Services are much more than Glorified Typists

transcribing services CanadaThose who haven’t had much experience with transcription may sometimes believe that transcribing services are basically typists with a fancy title. Unfortunately, they often realize too late (after hiring a cheap typist to do a transcriptionist’s job), that transcribing is a much more specialized profession, which requires specific skills, training and experience. Just because someone can type at 80 words per minute or more, does not mean that they can transcribe a document accurately for use in court, medicine, engineering or academia.

Transcribing Services Canada Can Be Proud of

Thankfully, there are the high-quality, experienced transcribing services Canada needs, thanks to companies such as Flaming Fingers, whose work highlights the differences between professional transcriptionists, such as their own, and amateur typists. Perhaps the most important of these differences are the following:

  • A thorough understanding of appropriate contexts – Professional transcriptionists do much more than simply listening and typing. For every project they work on, they must consider the format and context into which it will be transcribed. Verbatim texts have prescribed spellings and punctuation concerning disfluencies. Many transcriptions require such content to be edited out and grammatical corrections to be included, and some require transcription of exactly what is said.
  • Familiarity with accents and dialects – Professional transcriptionists are exposed to a wide variety of speakers during their training. It is very unlikely that a day will go by when they don’t need to transcribe audio of people with strong regional accents and people who are not speaking their first language. Transcriptionists tend to build up a wealth of experience in this area, whereas typists tend to listen to one speaker for years at a time.
  • Familiarity with a range of specialist terminology – Whereas a typist usually spends their career working with the vocabulary of one specific field, the best transcribing services Canada can provide will be exposed to terminology from widely different areas. Often they will take courses in these areas to improve their knowledge and expertise.
  • Professional presentation – While a good typist will endeavour to produce documents which look acceptable, professional transcriptionists know that a specific format and style of presentation is required for each type of transcription. By hiring a professional transcribing company, all of that work is automatically taken care of for you.
  • Flexibility – The best transcription services Canada has to offer will always invite you to send your audio in the format which is most convenient for you. In order for this to be practical, they must be familiar with, and sufficiently prepared to work with a wide variety of formats. While your average typist may not have heard of AIFF, FLAC, MPEG-4 DST, ATRAC and other audio file formats, a professional transcribing company will be comfortable working with all of them.

It is clear that comparing transcribing services to typists is unhelpful, particularly if you need any kind of specialization regarding your transcriptions. There is nothing wrong with typists – they are great when you need typing. But when you need transcribing, make sure you hire a transcriptionist.

Why Transcribing Services are Much more than Glorified Typists

transcribing services Canada Those who haven’t had much experience with transcription may sometimes believe that transcribing services are basically typists with a fancy title. Unfortunately, they often realize too late (after hiring a cheap typist to do a transcriptionist’s job), that transcribing is a much more specialized profession, which requires specific skills, training and experience. Just because someone can type at 80 words per minute or more, does not mean that they can transcribe a document accurately for use in court, medicine, engineering or academia.

Transcribing Services Canada Can Be Proud of

Thankfully, there are the high-quality, experienced transcribing services Canada needs, thanks to companies such as Flaming Fingers, whose work highlights the differences between professional transcriptionists, such as their own, and amateur typists. Perhaps the most important of these differences are the following:

  • A Thorough Understanding of Appropriate Contexts – Professional transcriptionists do much more than simply listening and typing. For every project they work on, they must consider the format and context into which it will be transcribed. Verbatim texts have prescribed spellings and punctuation concerning disfluencies. Many transcriptions require such content to be edited out and grammatical corrections to be included.
  • Familiarity with Accents and Dialects – Professional transcriptionists are deliberately exposed to a wide variety of speakers during their training. It is very unlikely that a day will go by when they don’t need to transcribe audio of people with strong regional accents and people who are not speaking their first language. Transcriptionists tend to build up a wealth of experience in this area, whereas typists tend to listen to one speaker for years at a time.
  • Familiarity with a Range of Specialist Terminology – Whereas a typist usually spends their career working with the vocabulary of one specific field, the best transcribing services Canada can provide will be exposed to terminology from widely different areas. Often they will take courses in these areas to improve their knowledge and expertise.
  • Professional Presentation – While a good typist will endeavour to produce documents which look acceptable, professional transcriptionists know that a specific format and style of presentation is required for each type of transcription. By hiring a professional transcribing company, all of that work is automatically taken care of for you.
  • Flexibility – The best transcription services Canada has to offer will always invite you to send your audio in the format which is most convenient for you. In order for this to be practical, they must be familiar with, and sufficiently prepared to work with a wide variety of formats. While your average typist may not have heard of AIFF, FLAC, MPEG-4 DST, ATRAC and other audio file formats, a professional transcribing company will be comfortable working with all of them.

It is clear that comparing transcribing services to typists is unhelpful, particularly if you need any kind of specialization regarding your transcriptions. There is nothing wrong with typists – they are great when you need typing. But when you need transcribing, make sure you hire a transcriptionist.

What Separates the Pros from the Average Joes?

Transcription servicesTranscription services are essential in a globalized and fast-paced world. These days it’s advisable for companies to have everything from voicemail messages to conference calls transcribed, in order to have an easily accessible and referenceable record of what has previously been said. The importance of such records is quite apparent, and yet many companies choose to entrust their transcription services to untrained, in-house or freelance transcriptionists. As we shall see, this can often prove to be a costly mistake.

The Advantages of Professional Transcription Services over Freelance and Untrained Attempts

There are obvious risks associated with hiring freelance and untrained people to do any kind of work. In the case of the former, it is true that some freelancers do work to standards which would be considered acceptable in the industry. The main difficulty is ensuring that the particular freelancer you have chosen can actually match those standards – is their sample work really their own, and if so, do they consistently uphold those standards? Even when all seems to be in order, there can be difficulties in communication, ensuring they are working legally and so on.

The problems with hiring untrained workers are much more obvious:

  • Speed and Accuracy – Whereas professional transcription services, such as those provided by Flaming Fingers, are carried out by experts who are trained to produce precise transcriptions in a short amount of time, untrained typists often sacrifice accuracy for time or vice versa. Quite often they produce transcripts that are so laden with errors as to make them unusable.
  • Fluency and Understanding – Transcription work that is handled by amateurs is often carried out unsatisfactorily due to a gap in understanding. In the most severe cases, it may be that the worker doesn’t have a solid grasp of the language – struggling with advanced vocabulary, accents and technical and legal concepts. Professionals usually have enough experience and training to overcome such difficulties.
  • Punctuation – The ‘average Joe’ doesn’t need to have a full command of punctuation – most of us can survive perfectly well without it. This fact, however, does them no favours when it comes to making professional transcripts. At best, a document which is poorly punctuated looks unprofessional. At worst it can cause serious misunderstandings and confusion. Professional transcriptionists have the training and knowledge to overcome this issue without any difficulties.
  • Homophones and Homonyms – Words which look alike and sound alike can easily confuse amateur would-be transcriptionists. Knowing instantly which spelling or meaning is needed, while maintaining a good speed, is a skill which professional transcriptionists develop with years of experience.

There are many more reasons you should think twice before hiring an amateur to transcribe your audio. Grammar can be a major issue, in the same way as punctuation, particularly in highly inflected languages such as French. The fact is that unless you entrust professional transcription services, such as Flaming Fingers, to produce the documents you need, you will always be at risk of being handed inaccurate, and therefore potentially damaging material.

What Separates the Pros from the Average Joes?

transcription services Transcription services are essential in a globalized and fast-paced world. These days it’s advisable for companies to have everything from interviews to conference calls transcribed, in order to have an easily accessible and referenceable record of what has previously been said. The importance of such records is quite apparent, and yet many companies choose to entrust their transcription services to untrained, in-house or freelance transcriptionists. As we shall see, this can often prove to be a costly mistake.

The Advantages of Professional Transcription Services over Freelance and Untrained Attempts

There are obvious risks associated with hiring freelance and untrained people to do any kind of work. In the case of the former, it is true that some freelancers do work to standards which would be considered acceptable in the industry. The main difficulty is ensuring that the particular freelancer you have chosen can actually match those standards – is their sample work really their own, and if so, do they consistently uphold those standards? Even when all seems to be in order, there can be difficulties in communication, ensuring they are working legally and so on.

The problems with hiring untrained workers are much more obvious:

  • Speed and Accuracy – Whereas professional transcription services, such as those provided by Flaming Fingers, are carried out by experts who are trained to produce precise transcriptions in a short amount of time, untrained typists often sacrifice accuracy for time or vice-versa. Quite often they produce transcripts that are so laden with errors as to make them unusable.
  • Fluency and Understanding – Transcription work that is handled by amateurs is often carried out unsatisfactorily due to a gap in understanding. In the most severe cases, it may be that the worker doesn’t have a solid grasp of the language – struggling with advanced vocabulary, accents and technical and legal concepts. Professionals usually have enough experience and training to have overcome such difficulties.
  • Punctuation – The ‘average Joe’ doesn’t need to have a full command of punctuation – most of us can survive perfectly well without it. This fact, however, does them no favours when it comes to making professional transcripts. At best, a document which is poorly punctuated looks unprofessional. At worst it can cause serious misunderstandings and confusion. Professional transcriptionists have the training and knowledge to overcome this issue without any difficulties.
  • Homophones and Homonyms – Words which look alike and sound alike can easily confuse amateur would-be transcriptionists. Knowing instantly which spelling or meaning is needed, while maintaining a good speed, is a skill which professional transcriptionists develop with years of experience.

There are many more reasons you should think twice before hiring an amateur to transcribe your audio. Grammar can be a major issue, in the same way as punctuation, particularly in highly inflected languages such as French. The fact is that unless you entrust professional transcription services, such as Flaming Fingers, to produce the documents you need, you will always be at risk of being handed inaccurate, and therefore potentially damaging material.

5 Questions to Ask Transcription Services Before You Hire

If you are going to the trouble and expense of hiring a transcription specialist to work from audio files or to make live recordings and transcribe from them, you should make sure that your chosen specialist can meet all of your needs in full. Some companies are more flexible than others so it pays to ask a few questions before you settle on one particular service provider. Below, we have listed 5 questions that we feel are important for you to ask before you engage the services of any particular transcription company.

Finding the Best Transcription Services in Toronto

Whether you call, email, or visit the offices of a transcription company in person, asking the questions below will help you to evaluate whether they are the right people for the work you have in mind.

  1. How Fast Are Your Turnaround Times? – If the companies you approach are not able to transcribe your files within a reasonable timeframe, it will not matter how good they are at what they do. You need to find a team that can handle your workload in a timely manner, without any drop in the standard of the transcriptions they provide.
  2. Do You Have the Capacity to take on Regular Work or a Large Volume of Work? – If the companies you approach does not have the capacity to take on regular work or a large volume of work you can run in to the problem of your tasks not being completed when you need them due to them being overwhelmed.
  3. How Many Years Have You Been in Business? – While you might get lucky and hire a brand-new team that is capable of doing a great job, it is far more likely that a well-established company will be able to provide you with the high-quality services you require. The longer a transcription firm has been in business, the easier it will be for them to anticipate your needs and therefore to make your life easier.
  4. Can I Send Files Over the Internet? – Whether you use ftp or another protocol, the ability to send audio or video files online will speed up the transcription process considerably. All reputable companies that offer transcription services in Toronto should be able to accept files that are sent over the internet.
  5. Do You Offer a Personal Service? – A company that takes the time to listen to your needs and is willing to provide a flexible service that is customized to meet them will definitely be a better choice than one that has no interest in ensuring you are happy with what they provide. Flexibility is key when working with transcription providers.

Our transcription services in Toronto are among the very best and we can certainly answer the above 5 questions to your complete satisfaction. Send us an email with your requirements or call to discuss them in person with a member of our team.  We are sure that we can provide you with the services you need.