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There are several idioms that could sum up quite quickly what this article is meant to convey, and thanks to, the definitions are spot on. The idioms are explained in relation to the service we offer - please click the phrase to read our response.


Read: History of transcription pricing


You get what you pay for....

Prov. Cliché If you do not pay much money for something, it is probably of poor quality.; If you pay well for something, it is more likely to be of good quality.

If you pay peanuts, you get monkeys....

Something that you say which means that only stupid people will work for you if you do not pay very much 'This company is full of incompetents!' 'Well, if you pay peanuts, you get monkeys.'

You pays your money (and you takes your chances)....

Something that you say which means if you do something that involves risk you must accept that you cannot control the result


You get what you pay for: Since Audiosec Limited came into service, we have provided first class transcripts for university research units, solicitors' practices, conference organisers, and corporate clients ranging from disciplinary hearings, court-standard PACE transcription of police interviews under caution, adjudication panels, teleconferences and web conferences. Our clients have demanding standards, expecting accuracy and timeliness; we deliver both.

The company is established on the firm foundation that we offer a bespoke service. This means our service matches the individual requirements of our clients, which means we are flexible about our turnaround times and how the work is set out. Our transcribers have at least ten year's professional audio transcription experience and have to pass a stringent transcription test. We don't test them on their typing speed, but on their level of accuracy and on their attention to detail. If a potential transcriber produces a transcript with 97% accuracy but has failed to follow the instructions given to them for setting out the transcript or the level of depth required, they fail the test. Our clients can be assured that if any member of the team of 20 professional transcribers sends back a transcript, the client would not be able to tell that more than one person worked on the task, and with in excess of 30 transcripts produced for one research project, this means teamwork. We work as one unit, for the benefit of the client and any discrepancies are dealt with quickly and efficiently in-house to ensure that level of quality remains throughout our association with our clients.

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If you pay peanuts, you get monkeys: The ladies that work with us have had experience of working with other transcription services on the Internet. They report that the atmosphere here, along with the care and respect they receive, cannot be matched. The general wage for a transcriber employed by a transcription service is 60p per audio minute for one to one interviews, with the service owner receiving another 150% on top of that fee (based on £1.50 per audio minute). The teams get all the work and the stress while the service provider rakes in the profits. Because we believe that a worker should be paid in recognition of their skill and hard work, we won't pay our transcribers any less than £1.00 per audio minute and receive 50% on top of that fee (based on £1.50 per audio minute) for project managing the work and administration. Because we pay well, we get the best transcribers and our transcribers stay with us, some of whom have gravitated here because of the way other agencies have treated them. Our clients are always pleased with our service and our word of mouth recommendations back up our promise of providing quality and service at affordable prices.

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You pays your money (and you takes your chances): If you get a cheaper quote for your work, please consider if the company is a one-person operation who can afford to undercut us, but cannot turn around the work by the agreed deadlines, becomes overloaded and then cuts corners on quality as the pressure mounts. Do they have sufficient experience to deal with in-depth transcription or are they experienced as an audio typist who has only dealt with dictation files? Do they give their transcribers an audio transcription test or just a typing test? Does their client list include the type of business sector you work in? Do they fully proof read against the audio before returning the transcripts to you? Are they undercutting the market because they are desperate for work and have no proven track record of satisfied clients, other than local small businesses?

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HISTORY OF TRANSCRIPTION PRICING: Audiosec Limited came into existence because the demand for first class, accurate audio transcription was such that one person alone could not cope with the demand. It is run by Dee Briston of DeeWP Transcription Services. Because her client load had become overwhelming she decided to start another agency that could cope with large scale projects and still deliver a first class service. The fees she charges her clients are in the mid-range for the industry standard in transcription. The original fees charged were on an hourly rate but a per audio minute rate was devised by Dee to help clients plan their budgets in advance - this rate is now used by many similar companies. Transcription charges six years ago were based on the lowest rate of £10.00 per typing hour (i.e. £1.00 per audio minute today) for simple transcription and up to £25.00 per hour for complex transcription (i.e. £2.50 per audio minute today). Dee's prices and those of Audiosec Limited fall into the mid-range, recognised by professionals as the industry standard and don't reach the higher end bracket of £2.50 per audio minute.  For in-depth transcription that professional transcribers undertake (i.e. not correspondence typing but court-ready, in-depth transcripts) an hour of audio would take approximately six hours to transcribe, plus proof reading against the audio to double check for accuracy. 

If you are being charged considerably less than £1.50 per audio minute for verbatim transcription (as a researcher) I would be very concerned as to the size of the organisation you are working with and their experience. It is for this reason that we have chosen not to compete on price but on quality and service.

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