Which is Better: Manual or Automated Transcription Service?

Transcription Service
Transcription Service

If you are thinking about acquiring a transcription service for your business – or even for your personal life – you will find that you have two options. You can choose between manual and automated transcription services. Which is right for you? Let’s take a closer look! 

What’s the Difference Between Manual and Automated? 

Before we can talk about their merits, we need to define what manual and automated transcriptions do. Manual transcription means that you will give your audio over to a transcription professional. They will listen to your audio and then write up the script to submit back to you. You can choose various levels of accuracy. You might want a complete transcription that includes all sounds and inflections, while you otherwise might just want the words that are in the audio. 

Automatic transcription is handled by an AI. It usually happens live as the initial recording is made, and it can again produce either a full transcript or just the words that the software is picking up. 

Using Automated Software 

One of the major advantages of using automated transcription software is the speed with which you can get your hands on the transcripts. Since the software can often run in parallel to the conversation or consultation that it is transcribing, this means that you can have the results you need shortly after. 

If you have stakeholders or other parties that you need to quickly distribute the transcripts to, this is going to be a great option for you. Automated software is a great option for those who want a quick or rough draft that they can refer to time and time again, potentially while reviewing the audio at the same time. 

Using Manual Transcription 

Manual transcription will take more time than an automated process. You can send items off in a rush order, but you will most often find that transcriptions can take a few days to fully process. Someone needs to listen to the audio in full and then work towards creating the transcription. 

One of the big advantages of opting for manual transcription is that it can be a lot more accurate than automatic transcription. A transcriptionist will be able to differentiate between varying voices and accents to a higher degree than an AI software can get. If you need accurate transcripts for records and other means, acquiring the services of the transcriptionist might be right. 

Which is Right for You? 

Both forms of transcription have their merits. You need to make sure that you are choosing the software that best suits your overall needs. If you need a quick, rough draft that you can work on quickly, an automatic software is always going to be best. Meanwhile, a more detailed and accurate transcript might be best ordered from someone who specialises in manual transcription. Explore both options, and work out which one is right for your needs. You could even manage to use a mix of both to help you with your goals.