How to Reduce the Costs of Interview Transcription

Interview TranscriptionChoosing the right transcription company can ensure quality when recorded interviews are converted to interview transcription. But, apart from quality affordability is something, there are certain things that you can do that can help reduce the cost of transcribing it. This would require you to take account of several factors, ranging from the quality of the recording to the time taken for documentation. Being conscious about these factors can help cut transcription costs significantly. Basically time is money. Here are some tips to guide you.

Be Careful About Timing

Delays in sending the materials late to the transcriptionist could make the job really hectic. Extra effort would be needed to complete your work within the agreed turnaround time. This is likely to take up the cost much more than expected. The quality of the work may also be compromised since it is done in a rush. So, be time conscious right from the start and throughout the process. Things you can do:

  • Negotiate a tentative budget with your transcription company
  • Make all the necessary arrangements to ensure that the audio/video file reaches the transcriptionist soon after the recording
  • Obtain informed consent from the interviewee before the interview to avoid consent-related issues after the recording is over

Choose Right Transcription Method

While recording the interview, you should have an idea about transcription method to be used. This can help reduce cost to a great extent. For example, if you want to transcribe interviews verbatim, you can choose from three options – word to word, intelligent (cuts all fillers while leaving the rest exactly), edited (corrects the grammar and mispronounced words apart from removing all fillers). The rates for each of these options differ among service providers. You should have a clear idea about the real purpose of the interview and choose the mode of transcription based on your goals. Negotiate the rates with the company and include that in the contract before sending them the recordings.

Provide Additional Details if Necessary

Give any additional details regarding the interview to make the job of transcriptionist easier and reduce the costs incurred. For example, in case of multiple participant interviews, you have to make it clear to the transcriptionist as to who is ‘Speaker A’ and who is ‘Speaker B’ to avoid confusion. If it is a video recording, you can place name plates before each speaker. If it is audio, ask speakers to say their names before the session starts.

Ensure Audio Quality

If the quality of the audio recording is poor, it would be very difficult to capture the speech, especially if the requirement is for verbatim transcription. This may cost you twice than the normal rate. The following measures can promote audio quality:

  • Use the right equipment to record the interview
  • Choose an environment with no background noises and try to avoid interruptions during the session
  • Use a high quality external microphone that can pick up speech well and ask the participants to speak clearly and loud enough

About Julie Clements

Julie Clements

Joined the MOS team in March of 2008. Julie Clements has background in the healthcare staffing arena; as well as 6 years as Director of Sales and Marketing at a 4 star resort. Julie was instrumental in the creation of the medical record review division (and new web site); and has especially grown this division along with data conversion of all kinds.