Are you looking for a SpeakWrite review? But you may wonder if it is a scam.
SpeakWrite could be the perfect online job for you if you have fast fingers and a desire to earn money. You do not have to worry if the term “make money online” conjures up images of scams and frauds. There is no catch with SpeakWrite.
I did not think so either when I first heard about SpeakWrite, so I’ll tell you what I discovered and why I think it’s reliable.
As a disclaimer, I’m not affiliated with SpeakWrite. It means I’m not paid to write this review. So you can rest assured that you will get an honest and unbiased review from me.
At the end of this review, I’ll also tell you the best alternative to SpeakWrite that has enabled me to make a full-time passive income online.
What Is SpeakWrite?
SpeakWrite has been around since 1997 (coincidentally, the same year as the first wave of dot-com companies and Yahoo’s Babel Fish translation program), making it one of the longest-running transcription services around.
SpeakWrite’s mission is to provide legal, justice, protective services and government clients with a service that “combines artificial and natural intelligence to capture the truth”
With this in mind, SpeakWrite is an outspoken advocate for a number of respected industry groups, including Axon, ABA, ALA and APHA.
Richard Jackson, SpeakWrite’s current CEO, began his career as a business attorney in Texas and remained there for nearly 30 years.
After graduating with honors from Baylor College Law School, where he was editor-in-chief of the Baylor Law Review, Richard Jackson worked at a law firm for five years.
He then opened his own clinic, which he ran for 20 years.
Richard, who refers to his time as a lawyer as his “former life,” founded Speakwrite in Austin, Texas, and has since expanded the business to employ writing professionals from across the United States and Canada.
How Does SpeakWrite Work?
SpeakWrite is a company that converts spoken words into written text used in legal and business settings. The company was founded by a business law attorney with over 30 years of experience.
Richard Jackson, the company’s founder, once ran a law firm with more than fifty employees and was motivated to start SpeakWrite to better handle the demands of creating legal documents.
SpeakWrite stands out from the transcription software crowd because it allows users to send dictation in a variety of formats. They can submit their work via recorded tapes, emails, or web uploads, or they can use the SpeakWrite app and toll-free dictation hotline, both of which are free.
The client sends in the audio recording, and then you can get to work. It’s up to you how many hours per week and on what days you want to work, as you can set your own schedule each week. If you log in during your shift, you’ll have instant access to your transcription tasks.
Remember that SpeakWrite works around the clock and all assignments need to be processed quickly. If you are unable to work a shift or have problems with your assignment, you need to let your team know immediately.
The Job Requirements
SpeakWrite is best suited for those who already have some transcription experience, as the focus is on legal transcription. Key features of the platform for general transcriptionists are:
- A writing speed of at least 60 words per minute is required.
- A writing speed of 90% is required.
- At least one year of word processing and transcription experience.
- A minimum of four hours per week is required.
- Legal residence in the United States or Canada
For those who wish to specialize in legal transcription, more stringent requirements apply. You must have acquired at least one year of experience in the last five years in a law firm.
Knowledge of word processing and legal transcription is also desirable.
In addition, a device is required. You will need a current Windows PC with Windows 2007 and Internet Explorer 8 or higher. You will also need Windows Media Player, headphones, a sound card, and a foot pedal to hear the audio.
How Much Can You Earn?
Those interested in becoming transcriptionists for SpeakWrite can do so for $0.005 per word. For example, if you transcribe 1,000 words for a client, you will receive $5. 1,000 words of continuous audio equals about six or seven minutes of audio at an average speaking rate of 125 words per minute. On select shifts, you can earn an additional 10%.
According to the company, its transcriptionists earn an average of $450 per month and can earn up to $3,400 per month.
Every two weeks, you’ll receive a check or direct deposit for your earnings. With SpeakWrite, you do not have to worry about transferring a portion of your earnings to a payment processor like PayPal or another service.
SpeakWrite is just one of many similar websites that offer remote transcription jobs with varying degrees of freedom and convenience. However, your earning potential is limited in all cases.
SpeakWrite has been around for almost twenty years and has earned a good reputation during that time. On Indeed, there are more positive than negative reviews for the company, which has an overall rating of 3.1.
The Better Business Bureau has given SpeakWrite an A+ rating. SpeakWrite has a considerable file history, however, there are no complaints against the company with the Better Business Bureau.
Therefore, it is good to know that SpeakWrite is a reputable platform that anyone with enough transcription skills should use.
What Sets SpeakWrite Apart From Other Companies?
While it’s not uncommon for online transcription companies, especially those that have been around for a while, to have their own unique software, SpeakWrite has always been at the forefront of industry innovation.
In addition to a cloud-based workflow platform, a free downloadable SpeakWrite app, and its own Speakeasy dictation software, SpeakWrite also offers CallCaptureTM, which records outgoing calls on a toll-free line, and PhotoNotesTM, which allows customers to take an unlimited number of time-stamped photos and insert them into the final text document.
In addition, users have the ability to create their own word lists and templates (for specific names, phrases, or acronyms) that can be updated at any time and consulted by typists to ensure correctness and consistency.
Transcriptionists should also note the fact that SpeakWrite pays (and bills) per word, not per hour.
Most transcription services pay their transcriptionists per audio minute or hour, with rates varying from $0.30 to $0.80 per audio minute or from $5 to $25 per audio hour, depending on the transcriptionist’s level of experience and the specifics of the project.
SpeakWrite pays half a cent per word, with some shifts also offering a 10% bonus (not currently listed on the website).
Transcripts with one speaker are charged one and a half cents, while transcripts with multiple speakers cost two and a quarter cents. The information is clear and easy to understand.
There are no additional fees for holidays or weekends, and customers pay only for completed work.
The company has served over 65,000 customers to date.
How to Apply to Be a SpeakWrite Transcriptionist?
Transcriptionists with little or no experience should not apply to SpeakWrite.
(If you are thinking of getting into this field, you can find many other companies like Babbletype, Quicktate, and TranscribeMe hiring newbies.)
SpeakWrite provides its employees with all the necessary hardware and software, as well as access to the appropriate Internet resources, but also has a long and specific set of expectations for its potential employees.
Interested transcriptionists must be citizens of the United States or Canada and have a minimum typing speed of 60 words per minute (WPM) at a 90 percent accuracy rate.
They are also expected to have excellent listening skills and be able to work independently.
Applicants for general transcription jobs must have worked as word processors or stenographers in an office setting for at least one year within the past five years.
Must have experience with “complex formatting functions” and not just data entry and clerical work.
However, applicants seeking a legal transcription position must demonstrate at least one year of legal transcription and word processing experience in a law firm within the last five years.
Although English proficiency is required for all SpeakWrite transcriptionists, the company is also interested in bilingual applicants for its Spanish transcription projects.
The following computer equipment (hardware and software) is required to use the SpeakWrite system:
- Windows PC with at least 1 GB RAM (Sorry, Mac users!)
- Windows 7 or higher
- Microsoft Word 2007 or higher is required
- Microsoft Internet Explorer 8.0 or higher is required.
- Adobe Acrobat Reader 8.0 or higher is required.
- Windows Media Player 10, 11 or 12 is required.
- Headphones and a sound card
- Printer (inkjet or laser)
- Foot pedal with USB port
If you are qualified and interested in the position, you can apply online and take a typing test through the organization.
Following these two actions, you will need to complete some paperwork, such as a confidentiality agreement and a description of your work experience and availability.
SpeakWrite training materials such as movies and quizzes are provided to new employees, and they are given some assignments that serve as simulations of the system.
Before they begin actual work, transcriptionists are evaluated based on their performance in a small number of training assignments (remember, these are not “real” assignments and you do not yet receive pay).
You should allow approximately 30 days from the time you submit an application to the time of full review.
1. Freedom and Flexibility
Independent contractors enjoy complete independence when working in the transcription field from a remote location. The times you are available are entirely up to you. Since the work can be adjusted to fit your schedule and other commitments, it’s also a fantastic choice for those looking for extra income.
2. Almost Unlimited Jobs and Clients Available
SpeakWrite claims to place over one million transcriptionist orders annually, with over 60,000 active clients. There is no reason why you can not make a significant amount of money with SpeakWrite if you have a high level of skill and experience in the field.
3. Legitimate Company with Good Contractor Support Available
SpeakWrite has been in business for over 20 years and has proven to be a reliable and trustworthy online workplace. They make no bones about their business model and the opportunities they offer independent contractors.
1. Pay Can Be Inconsistent
The field of transcription is a very variable field. Because there are so many variables, the tasks required for each job are different. The pace and effectiveness with which you complete the task can be drastically altered by factors such as audio quality, speakers, and interruptions.
The amount you can earn is directly affected by this. If you spend four hours on a task that really only takes you one hour, it’s a waste of time and money.
2. Lots of Requirements
The application process for SpeakWrite is very rigorous. This is due to the strict expectations placed on them once they are hired as a contractor.
SpeakWrite guarantees its clients lightning fast turnaround times on jobs, and therefore employs only the most qualified and experienced freelancers to get the job done. This also means that SpeakWrite is not always the best choice for people who are just starting out.
3. Only Available to US or Canada Residents
The platform is only available to users in the United States and Canada, which reduces the number of typists who can use it. However, this restriction also reduces competition from freelancers in other countries.
4. Not Available to Mac Users
Again, SpeakWrite’s target audience is small, as freelancers can only use it if they have a Windows computer. This is done so that SpeakWrite and its clients can be sure that the contractor’s software will work together properly, but it excludes a significant portion of the population.
Is SpeakWrite a Scam or Legit?
It is normal to have doubts about the truthfulness of “online jobs” However, you can be sure that SpeakWrite NOT is a scam.
Scammers generally have the trait of operating anonymously and staying out of trouble.
SpeakWrite, on the other hand, not only provides its office location and contact information online, but also actively goes to court instead of shirking.
Richard Jackson, the founder of SpeakWrite, worked for nearly 30 years as a litigator in a firm of 50 attorneys, and SpeakWrite was founded out of a desire to break down the barriers to legal document creation.
The American Bar Association, the California State Police, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation are just a few of the organizations that now support them.
For those of us who appreciate spy thrillers and spy movies, the ideal situation would be for Ethan Hunt or Jason Bourne to be caught in the middle of an elaborate scheme involving both law enforcement and national security.
In the real world, however, online fraudsters are not usually networked with law enforcement agencies such as FBI.
Independent transcriptionists may have both positive and negative opinions about SpeakWrite. However, you can be sure that it is not a scam.
What I Like About SpeakWrite
- Despite the fact that you must meet SpeakWrite’s requirements, the hiring process makes for a less competitive environment once you are in.
- SpeakWrite is a well-established company that has maintained customer relationships for more than 20 years.
- If you stick with it for a long time and do a good job, you can get a full-time position.
What I Don’t Like About SpeakWrite
- Not for newbies: you must’ve at least one year of professional transcription experience. SpeakWrite will review your professional background. If you don’t have any, your application will be rejected.
- For Windows PCs only: SpeakWrite software is for Windows PCs only. If you use a Mac or tablet, you’re out of luck.
- The shifts are limited: While you can indicate your availability, you will not have access to more shifts until you gain more platform experience. Combined with the low base pay, this means you’ll struggle to earn a full-time income initially.
SpeakWrite Review: Final Verdict
If you’re looking for a reputable online platform to pursue a transcription career, SpeakWrite is an excellent option. Although the platform isn’t open to complete newbies, it’s worth applying once you’ve at least one year of professional experience.
The application process for SpeakWrite may seem daunting at first, but if you take it step by step and make sure you meet all the requirements, you should be able to apply in no time. The entire process can take a long time. Once your application is accepted, you’ve 30 days to review it.
However, you can choose your own pace and complete the task whenever you want. The assessment can be completed in a few days if you actively work on it.
SpeakWrite is one of the best places to look for transcription jobs. You can make some money on these sites, but not much.
If you’re looking for a way to increase your earnings, you can offer your transcription services on a contract basis, which will open up a lot more opportunities for you.
But if you want to make a full-time income online, let me tell you more in the next section.
Best Alternative of SpeakWrite to Make Passive Income
If you want to make a stable and secure stream of passive income, I would suggest you start an affiliate marketing business online.
Affiliate Marketing is perfect for anyone who is new to online business.
In fact, of all the online business models I’ve tried, affiliate marketing is the easiest and most rewarding so far.
In affiliate marketing, you can actually run your business almost with zero cost and achieve a steady and sustainable passive income to pay for your bills. You don’t need any initial capital and can even do it as a side hustle.
And if you really want to learn affiliate marketing and build a business from scratch, I’d recommend you to get started with the most reputable platform for affiliate marketing: Wealthy Affiliate.
Wealthy Affiliate is an all-in-one platform for building your affiliate marketing business from scratch. It offers you a free account (including a free website) with comprehensive training on SEO (free traffic methods), which enables you to get started with affiliate marketing right away without paying a penny.
But How Much Can You Earn with Wealthy Affiliate?
A 21-year old student from Wealthy Affiliate was able to earn $7,395 in just 1 week, which means he made more than $1k a day…all while using free traffic methods.
Wealthy Affiliate has existed for 15 years and there are many success stories in the past decade.
To give you more examples, here are some of the other inspiring success stories of Wealthy Affiliate members.
Where to Join Wealthy Affiliate?
Wealthy Affiliate has a very simple pricing scheme. It has free and premium membership.
If you want to feel about Wealthy Affiliate, you can sign up for the free starter membership here (no credit card required). You can select to be a free member with no time limit.
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You can enjoy all these values without paying a penny.
So I strongly recommend you to register a free account and see it yourself.