Law firms are typically hesitant to adopt new technology, primarily because attorneys worry that new technology might diminish productivity. However, technology that accelerates productivity and improves efficiency should be a consideration amidst an increasingly competitive marketplace, especially among small and midsize firms. This is a key reason why our firm, McCollum Crowley elected to update their document-creation workflow with advanced voice technology. (Read more)
For the love of everything that is holy, please read your work before you submit it to a senior person for review. Nothing says “I don’t care” more than a draft littered with spelling errors. This includes internal file notes by the way – just get in the habit of taking care with your work. (Read more)
How Long Would it Take to Transcribe (Digital) Dictation?
It is a commonly held misconception that it only takes one hour to transcribe one hour of recorded material. People speak about 4 to 5 times faster than an experienced transcriptionist can type. Therefore, in general, a one hour audio recording that is of good sound quality and well dictated takes between 4 to 5 hours to transcribe, although there are variables such as the quality of the audio, the number of people speaking, the speed of the conversation, accents, overlapping speakers, poor microphone positioning, etc.
- Interestingly, people speak seven times faster than they write and four times faster than they type, which is why one needs to allow four times the length
of a recording and why intellectual assets (the producers) of any firm should assist clients and let transcribers transcribe!
How long would it take to transcribe an audio recording of one hour?
In general, 15 minutes of clearly recorded speech takes one hour to transcribe. Therefore a one hour audio recording would take 4 hours to type. Allow an equivalent time of the duration of the recording for proof reading. Therefore a clearly dictated one hour audio recording would probably require 5 hours work. Obviously, longer would be required if the recording is muffled or otherwise unclear.
The professional transcription industry standard allows one hour to transcribe 15 minutes of clearly recorded speech. It therefore takes a minimum of 4 hours to transcribe a one hour audio recording and can take as much as 6 or 8 hours depending on the quality of the recording. Transcribing can take much longer for focus groups, meetings, seminars and conferences with multiple participants, and perhaps as much as 8 or 10 hours for an audio recording of one hour.
Dictation is an essential part of learning how to use technology and leverage effectively – no matter how fast you think you type.
Why Don’t We Teach Dictation?
It baffles me that “practical legal training” doesn’t teach skills like dictation.
Unfortunately dictation is viewed as an archaic process, one that is apparently dependent upon the “old-fashioned” secretarial system and one which lawyers have a lot of trouble grasping.
However, if done properly, dictation can vastly improve your productivity and free you up to do higher value tasks, edit more complex documents, and to develop relationships with existing clients, prospects, and expanding a network generally.
Also – even if you don’t have a secretary, digital dictation options are becoming more and more attractive.
They Didn’t Teach you Dictation, but I will
I recognise that there are a lot of lawyers out there who might give dictation a go if they knew where to start.
But that’s only the case if they have the proper skills to do it.
So I thought I would develop this guide to give you a comprehensive overview of dictation, how to dictate, how to use a dictaphone, how to approach more complex documents and generally how you can improve your productivity through the dictation process in a practical way. (Read more)
GNDS is a professional digital dictation systems dealer. That means they provide complete "turn-key" digital dictation system solutions. They demonstrate the products, install, configure and train on how to use the systems. After the sale, they are available to assist their customers with excellent customer support. Although GNDS is an Oregon based company many law firms as well as medical practices spanning from Alaska, Washington, Oregon, California, Texas, Georgia on through to Massachusetts know John Danese & Great Northwest Dictating Systems. GNDS connects with customers in person, via GoToMeeting Q&A webinars and support the customers after the sale in person or via GoToAssist on-line support. You can reach them at 503.538.6205 or at 888.464.5362. The website is www.greatdictatingsystems.com.