5 Best Practices to Improve Transcription Quality for Outsourcing

December 2022


2 min read

5 Best Practices to Improve Transcription Quality for Outsourcing

Selecting a vendor is probably the most critical and challenging part of transcription outsourcing. Choosing the wrong vendor leads to poor accuracy, discrepancies in transcripts, and delay in your work.

Transcription errors can range from small errors, such as spelling mistakes, to larger errors like completely misinterpreting the meaning of the audio. It is crucial to look out for a professional transcription service provider that best caters to your need.

Explore the power of text-based video editing.
Try Reduct for free →

Here are five tips that can help you avoid transcription mistakes:

1. Invest in a Better Recording Setup

People usually overlook background noise while recording audio or video. Dogs barking, kids crying or talking, or any other disturbing sound that collides with the speaker’s voice can drown the context.

To avoid background noise you can also:

  • Record in a quiet space or room with no echoes.

  • Use a directional microphone. A directional microphone will pick up sound from one direction and reduce background noise from other directions.

  • Use a compressor. A compressor will reduce the dynamic range of your audio, meaning it will reduce the difference between the loudest and quietest parts of your recording. This can help reduce the impact of background noise.

2. Set Clear Ground Rules With the Participants

Establish ground rules prior to the start of the conversation for recording. Always remind your respondents to speak more clearly and naturally.

Rephrase questions in a way that requires a more audible response or provide verbal cues to the respondent that signals that their response is required.

Request speakers to refrain from speaking over one another, and to take turns instead. Share your plan for the interview beforehand, so that the flow is not muddled.

Finally, make sure you pause after asking a question to give the respondent time to think and to provide a more audible response.

3. Be Clear About Your Transcription Requirements

When setting project instructions for transcription, consider ‘why’ you’re doing it in the first place. For instance, a verbatim transcription is ideal for archiving a recording, while a summary transcription is more appropriate for creating a synopsis.

Decide whether the transcription should include filler words like ‘um’, ‘uh’ or not. Communicate the deadline for completion very clearly, especially if you’re outsourcing to a freelancer.

Even the transcriber will appreciate these ‘notes to the transcriber’ because it will make their life easier.

4. Provide Glossary Information:

Provide access to any additional resources or notes that may be pertinent to the transcription project. This can include any glossary, relevant reports, documents, or research that may provide additional context.

5. Avoid freelancers if you have a tight deadline

It can be difficult to ensure the transcription is accurate and meets your expectations when working with a freelancer. Freelancers do not typically have the same level of experience and resources as a professional transcription company. Additionally, the turnaround time for transcription can often be longer than anticipated.

If you have a large document that needs to be transcribed quickly, the preferred solution would be to hire a professional transcription service that has the capacity to handle a large workload and meet the deadline.


Before you begin the process of outsourcing your audio or video files, make sure to choose the best transcription service provider for your industry. Different transcription companies specialize in different areas, so it’s beneficial to do your research and find one that specifically caters to your needs.

Reduct removes the pain of working with video.

Recommended Articles: