Secretaries’ Transcription Needs

November 20, 2007 at 12:07 pm Leave a comment

As much as possible it is desirable that the impact on the secretaries and typists of digital transcription is minimal. In fact, a well designed and deployed solution will be met with enthusiasm when the previously impossible has become possible, such as working from home or highly efficient work sharing to avoid being required to stay back late.

The needs of secretaries and typists fall into 2 categories – what they have always been able to do with tape systems, and what they could do with digital dictation.

How many Secretaries are there in total?
In preparation for the licencing discussion, an understanding will be necessary with respect to the total number of secretaries versus the Full Time Equivalent (FTE) number of secretaries and the greatest number of secretaries at one time, and the distribution over the three 8 hour shifts of the day.

How do the Secretaries view the current tape-based system?
This is an often under-analysed area. Poor productivity due to poor quality recordings costs real money. Also, their opinions may give an insight into any possible resistance to change, or indeed hidden resentment of tapes. Many secretaries immediately believe that their jobs are under threat. This fear will need to be assuaged.

How do Secretaries cope with a bunch of tapes dropped in their in basket?
This helps clarify their level of advocacy for change.

How do Secretaries share the work within and between the practice groups?
This will demonstrate whether they have a teamwork mentality or a solo mentality. Digital dictation opens up a world of opportunities in both flattening the peaks of workload, as well as providing skills-based routing, e.g. some typists like to transcribe multi-attendee conferences.

How do the Secretaries cope with the jobs not completed during the day?
Left for tomorrow lowers client service levels, completed on overtime reduces profitability, transferred to another shift…

Have the Secretaries been asked their opinion of the tape sound quality?
Sometimes this is a very strong driver because poor sound quality impacts their ability to get their job done and it leads to dissatisfaction. It can also result in frequent interruptions of the lawyers as clarifications are sought, especially with multi-attendee conference audio recordings.

Is there a senior Secretary willing to champion the system?
Secretaries are not in a position to approve the system, but they are certainly in a position to provide valuable advice on more efficient ways of working.

Are there Secretaries who could take on revenue generating work, or easily up-skill to do so?
This will uncover hidden value in digital dictation from the redeployment of secretaries to para-legal type work.

In our next post, we will be looking at the Capabilities of the Digital Dictation Systems. They ARE NOT all the same, and I will show you how you can determine which is the right one for you.

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Entry filed under: dictation, Digital Dictation, law, Transcription. Tags: , , , , .

Lawyers’ Dictation Needs Digital Dictation Capabilities

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