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Transcription services are often necessary to get speech typed into a computer document, and there are a few types of software to help with this task. One of the most common kinds of transcription software is the type that can roughly transcribe speech on its own, because it recognizes language, though usually not as well as an experienced transcriptionist does. Some people in this field also use text expanders, which reduce what a transcriptionist needs to type when transcribing long words. Those who run a transcription business may appreciate software meant to keep files both organized and secure for greater efficiency.
One type of transcription software that has become widely used in the early 21st century includes voice recognition programs. Someone who needs his words transcribed can use this software to get most of his speech into a computer document without the help of anyone else. This type of software, however, cannot usually sense where punctuation should go, which is why a transcriptionist is still typically necessary before the document is complete. The person dictating the speech can use this type of transcription software to get most of the speech transcribed, and then he can send it to a transcriptionist to edit and add punctuation when necessary.
Another type of transcription equipment that can make a transcriptionist's job faster is software that senses the intended word when just the first few letters are typed. This is often called a text expander, and it works by requiring the user to first create a list of words that are often used in the industry. Then, each time the user types in the initial letters, the entire word will usually appear so he can save time while transcribing. This type of transcription software is most helpful when long words need to be typed repeatedly, which is quite common in both the medical and legal industries.
Some transcriptionists use software to help them run their business efficiently. This type of program can keep track of deadlines so work gets transcribed on time, and it also can distribute jobs among either employees or subcontractors. Such programs also can organize files properly so they are easy to access and difficult to lose within the software. In addition, some industries have a need for files to be kept safe so only authorized people can access them, which is why some transcription software of this type has security features, protecting both the transcriptionist and the client.