Do you want to start a medical transcription business? If YES, here is a complete guide to starting a medical transcription business with NO money and no experience.
Okay, so we have provided you an in-depth sample medical transcription business plan template. We also took it further by analyzing and drafting a sample medical transcription marketing plan backed up by actionable guerrilla marketing ideas for medical transcription companies. In this article, we will be considering all the requirements for starting a medical transcription business. So put on your entrepreneurial hat and let’s proceed.
Table of Content
- 1 Why Start a Medical Transcription Business?
- 2 What is a Medical Transcription Business?
- 3 Starting a Medical Transcription Business – Market Research and Feasibility Studies
- 4 Starting a Medical Transcription Business – Legal Matters
- 5 Is Professional Certification Needed to Run a Starting a Medical Transcription Business?
- 6 Starting a Medical Transcription Business – Technical and Manpower Details
- 7 Starting a Medical Transcription Business – The Marketing Plan
Why Start a Medical Transcription Business?
In order to become a player in the healthcare industry, you don’t necessarily need to become a big-time investor, a medical doctor, a pharmacist or a nurse. If you are interested in the healthcare industry, one of the many businesses that you can successfully start is a medical transcription business; it is a business that is promising and profitable in the United States of America.
What is a Medical Transcription Business?
The medical transcription business cum services is all about transcription, or converting voice-recorded reports as dictated by physicians or other healthcare professionals, into text format.
Just like most businesses, the medical transcription services business is open to as many people that are interested in the industry as long as they have the required experience and qualifications.
Starting a medical transcription services firm is not too expensive except for the money required to rent and furnish an office space and purchase the applicable software apps. Running this type of business requires that you should be trained as a mass communicator and it is indeed a very lucrative business in the United States, Canada, Australia and The United Kingdom because of the desire for continuous engagement between clients and key stakeholders in the healthcare industry.
If you have decided to start a medical transcription services firm, then you must make sure that you carry out thorough feasibility studies and also market survey. This will enable you to properly locate the business in a community or city with the right demography; a location that can readily accept your services.
So, if you have done the required feasibility studies and market research, then you might want to venture into this business. If you have been contemplative on starting your own medical transcription services firm, but do not know how to go about it, then you should consider going through this article; it will give you the needed guide and direction.
Starting a Medical Transcription Business – A Complete Guide
- Industry Overview
Medical transcription services firms are listed under the Document Preparation Services industry and this industry encompasses several services including letter or resume writing; document editing or proofreading; word processing or desktop publishing; transcription or dictation; and other secretarial services.
Medical transcription service is also a subset of the healthcare services industry that edits doctor dictated reports, procedures, and notes in an electronic format in order to create files representing the treatment history of patients. Health practitioners dictate what they have done after performing procedures on patients and MT’s transcribe the oral dictation and/or edit reports that have gone through speech recognition software.
If you take note of happenings over the years, you will notice that transcription equipment has steadily transformed from manual typewriters to electric typewriters to word processors to computers and from plastic disks and magnetic belts to cassettes and endless loops and digital recordings.
In this era, speech recognition (SR), which is also known as continuous speech recognition (CSR), is increasingly being used, with medical transcriptions and or “editors” providing supplemental editorial services, even though there are infrequent instances where SR fully replaces the MT. Natural-language processing takes “automatic” transcription a step further, providing an interpretive function that speech recognition alone does not provide (even though Ms do).
The Document Preparation Services Industry that medical transcription services is a part of is indeed a large industry and pretty much active in countries such as United States of America, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, Holland, Switzerland, Australia and Canada et al.
Statistics has it that in the United States of America alone, there are about 85,968 registered and licensed document preparation services firms scattered all across the United States responsible for employing about 128,972 and the industry rakes in a whooping sum of $5 billion annually. The industry is projected to grow at -0.5 percent annual rate within 2011 and 2016. It is important to state that Nuance has the largest available market share in the industry.
A recent report published by IBISWorld shows that the Document Preparation Services industry encompasses a broad range of services that prepare written or electronic documents for clients. However, the industry has experienced heightened competition from other industries due to increased use of mobile and software-based products. The report also shows that the industry revenue is expected to decline at an annualized rate of 0.5 percent over the period to $4.8 billion.
The fact that medical transcription services firms can easily be found in cities in the United States of America, does not in any way make the industry to be over saturated. The fact that there are people and organizations out there who would always need professional medical transcription services cum healthcare consulting services from time to time to produce medical transcripts makes the business ever green.
Some of the factors that inspire entrepreneurs to start their own medical transcription services business could be that the business is exceedingly profitable and can be started in any part of the world with minimal startup capital and minimal full time employees.
Over and above, starting a medical transcription services firm requires professionalism and a good grasp of the healthcare industry. Besides, you would need to get the required certifications and license and also meet the requirements for such business before you can be allowed to start a medical transcription services firm in the United States.
One good thing about the medical transcription services firm is that there is a readily available market for their services. So, if you are well positioned and you know how to deliver results as a medical transcriber, you will always smile to the bank.
Starting a Medical Transcription Business – Market Research and Feasibility Studies
- Demographics and Psychographics
The composition of those who need the services of medical transcription services firms revolves around the healthcare field such as hospitals, physicians, healthcare practitioners et al who need a third party to help them handle medical transcription services.
List of Niche ideas Within the Medical Transcription Business That You Can Specialize in
It is important to state that medical transcription service is a niche area in the Document Preparation Services Industry. But on the other hand, some medical transcription services firms may decide to also offer some or all of the under listed services;
- Desktop publishing services
- Dictation services
- Audio or documental transcription services
- Editing and proofreading services
- Letter and resume writing services
- Word processing services
- Other secretarial services
The Level of Competition in the Medical Transcription Services Line of Business
The competition that exists in the medical transcription services line of business goes beyond competition amongst medical transcription services firms in your location; you are expected to compete with other healthcare consulting firms that offer medical transcription services to clients. Thus, it will be right to say the competition in the medical transcription services line of business is a little bit tough.
The truth is that no matter the level of competition in an industry, if you have done your due diligence and you brand and promote your services or business properly, you will always make headway in the industry. Just ensure you can effectively handle medical transcription services for your clients, you can deliver excellent customer care services, and you know how to attract and reach out to your target market.
There are several medical transcription services firms scattered all around the United States, so if you choose to start your own medical transcription services business in the United States, you will definitely meet stiff competition amongst them. Besides, there are larger medical transcription services firms that determine the trend in the industry and you should be ready to compete with them for customers.
List of Well-Known Brands in the Medical Transcription Industry
You will quite agree that in every industry, there are always brands that perform better or are better regarded by customers and the general public than others. Some of these brands are those that have been in the industry for a long time, while others are best known for how they conduct their businesses and the results they have achieved over the years.
These are some of the leading medical transcription services firms in the United States of America and also in the globe;
- Viva Transcription Corporation
- Medical Transcription & Billing Services USA & India -Prexus Health
- Medical Transcription Services
- Translation Services USA
- Tradecom Medical Transcription
- USA Medical Transcription Team
- Medical Communications USA
- Way With Words USA
- Sunrise Transcription, Inc.
- Transcript USA
- MTBC – Medical Transcription Billing Company
- Lloyds Solutions Inc
- Orion Transcription Services Inc
- Numina Transcription Services Inc
- Transcription Outsourcing, LLC
- Mercedes Transcription, Inc.
- eTransMed Medical Transcription Services
- Eyered Transcription Services
- Cobb Medical Transcription, Inc.
- Outsource Strategies International (OSI)
When it comes to starting a medical transcription services firm, you just have to get your feasibility studies and market research right before venturing into the business.
Starting this kind of business entails that you acquire the required degree and profession certifications and also build good working relationship with stakeholders in the healthcare industry. If you are already a major player in the healthcare consulting services industry before venturing out to start your medical transcription services firm, this might not be an issue.
Depending on the scale at which you want to start from, you might require as much as multiple thousands of dollars to strike this off and at the same time you might need far less than that if you choose to start the business from your house, a virtual office or shared office space.
You will be expected to hire the services of experts that will help you with a comprehensive economic and cost analysis of the business within the location that you intend launching it. If you get your economic and cost analysis right before launching the business, you may not have to stay the long before you break even.
Starting Your Medical Transcription Services Firm from Scratch vs Buying a Franchise
When it comes to starting a business of this nature, it will do you a world of good to buy the franchise of a prosperous medical transcription services firm as against starting from the scratch. Even though it is relatively expensive to buy the franchise of an established medical transcription services firm, but it will definitely pay you in the long run.
But if you truly want to build your own brand after you must have proved your worth in the medical transcription services line of business, then you might just want to start your own medical transcription services firm from the scratch. Starting from the scratch will afford you the opportunity to conduct thorough market survey and feasibility studies before choosing a location to launch the business.
Please note that most of the big and successful medical transcription services firms round started from the scratch and they were able to build a solid business brand. It takes dedications hard work and determination to achieve business success and of course you can build your own medical transcription services firm to become a successful brand with corporate and individual clients from all across the length and breadth of the United States of America and other countries of the world.
Possible Threats and Challenges You Will Face When Starting a Medical Transcription Services Business
If you decide to start your own medical transcription services firm today, one of the major challenges you are likely going to face is the presence of well-established medical transcription services firms and also other related healthcare consulting firms and advisory businesses that are offering the same services that you intend offering. The only way to avoid this challenge is to create your own market.
Some other threats that you are likely going to face as a medical transcription services firm operating in the United States are unfavorable government policies, the arrival of a competitor within your location of operation and global economic downturn which may affect medical transcription services firms. There is hardly anything you can do as regards these threats other than to be optimistic that things will continue to work for your good.
Starting a Medical Transcription Business – Legal Matters
- Best legal entity to use for this type of business
When considering starting a medical transcription services firm, the legal entity you choose will go a long way to determine how big the business can grow.
Generally, you have the option of either choosing a general partnership or limited liability Company for a medical transcription services firm. Ordinarily, general partnership should have been the ideal business structure for a small scale medical transcription services firm especially if you are just starting out with a moderate startup capital. But people prefer limited liability Company for obvious reasons.
As a matter of fact, if your intention is to grow the business and have clients both corporate and individual from all across the United States of America and other countries of the world, then choosing general partnership is not an option for you. Limited Liability Company, LLC will cut it for you.
Catchy Business Name ideas Suitable for a Medical Transcription Services Firm
When it comes to selecting a name for a business, it is expected that you should be creative because whatever name you choose for your business will go a long way to create a perception of what the business represents. Usually it is the norm for people to follow the trend in the industry they intend operating from when naming their business.
If you are considering starting your own medical transcription services firm, here are some catchy names that you can choose from;
- Journals Scripts & Co® Medical Transcription Firm, LLC
- Ready Writer® Medical Transcription Services, LLC
- Pen it Down® Medical Transcription Firm, LLP
- Blake Rose & Co® Medical Transcription Services, LLP
- Samson Josh© Medical Transcription Services Company, Inc.
- Wendell Richard & Associates® Medical Transcription Services, LLP
- Silver Pen® Medical Transcription Services Group
- Blue Ribbon® Medical Transcription Services, LLC
- Primetime Writers & Co® Medical Transcription Services, LLP
- Intel Correspondence® Medical Transcription Services, Inc.
- Shannon McPherson® Medical Transcription Services, Inc.
- Grace Ville® Medical Transcription Services, LLP
In the United States of America and in most countries of the world, you can’t operate a business without having some of the basic insurance policy covers that are required by the industry you want to operate from. So, it is imperative to create a budget for insurance policy covers and perhaps consult an insurance broker to guide you in choosing the best and most appropriate insurance policies for your medical transcription services firm.
Here are some of the basic insurance policy covers that you should consider purchasing if you want to start your own medical transcription services firm in the United States of America;
- General insurance
- Health insurance
- Liability insurance
- Workers compensation
- Overhead expense disability insurance
- Business owner’s policy group insurance
Intellectual Property Protection/Trademark
If you are considering starting your own medical transcription services firm, usually you are required to file for intellectual property protection/trademark. This is because the nature of the business makes it possible for you to challenge organizations and individuals in court for illegally making use of your company’s intellectual properties.
Also, If you want to protect your company’s logo and other documents or software that are unique to you or even jingles and media production concepts, then you can go ahead to file for intellectual property protection. If you want to register your trademark, you are expected to begin the process by filing an application with the USPTO.
Is Professional Certification Needed to Run a Starting a Medical Transcription Business?
Aside from accurately transcribing medical cases and report for your clients, professional certification is one of the main reasons why some medical transcription services firms stand out. If you want to make an impact in the medical transcription services line of business, you should work towards acquiring all the needed certifications in your area of specialization.
Certification validates your competency and shows that you are highly skilled, committed to your career, and up-to-date in this competitive market. These are some of the certifications you can work towards achieving if you want to run your own medical transcription services firm;
- Certified Healthcare Business Consultant (CHBC)
- Certified Professional Secretary Certification
- Degree in Secretarial Studies, Journalism and Mass Communication
Please note that you cannot successfully run a medical transcription services firm in the United States and in most countries of the world without necessarily acquiring professional certification and business license even if you have adequate experience cum background in the Document Preparation Services industry.
List of Legal Documents You Need to Run a Medical Transcription Services Business
The essence of having the necessary documentation in place before launching a business in the United States of America cannot be overemphasized. It is a fact that you cannot successfully run any business in the United States without the proper documentations. If you do, it won’t be too long before the long hand of the law catch-up with you.
These are some of the basic legal documents that you are expected to have in place if you want to legally run your own medical transcription services firm in the United States of America;
- Certificate of Incorporation
- Federal Tax Payer’s ID
- State Permit
- Business License and Certification
- Business Plan
- Non – disclosure Agreement
- Employment Agreement (offer letters)
- Operating Agreement for LLCs
- Insurance Policy
- Consulting contract documents
- Apostille (for those who intend operating beyond the United States of America)
- Company Bylaws
- Insurance Policy
- Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)
Financing Your Medical Transcription Services Business
Apart from the required certifications and hands-on experience, starting a medical transcription services firm can be cost effective. Securing a standard office in a good business district, equipping the office and paying your employees are part of what will consume a large chunk of your startup capital.
But when it comes to financing a business, one of the first things you should consider is to write a good business plan. If you have a good and workable business plan document in place, you may not have to labor yourself before convincing your bank, investors and your friends to invest in your business or to partner with you.
Here are some of the options you can explore when sourcing for startup capital for your medical transcription services firm;
- Raising money from personal savings and sale of personal stocks and properties
- Raising money from investors and business partners
- Sell of shares to interested investors
- Pitching your business idea and applying for business grants and seed funding from donor organizations and angel investors
- Source for soft loans from your family members and your friends
Choosing a Suitable Location for your Medical Transcription Business
Medical transcription services firms and most consulting services based type of businesses necessitate that you see physically with your clients hence it must be located in a good location; a location that is prone to both human and vehicular traffic and a location that is at the epicenter of a healthcare services-related business district if indeed you want to attend to loads of clients and make profits from the business.
The fact that you can operate your medical transcription services firm from any part of the world does not mean that location has little influence on the success of a medical transcription services firm. If you have taken your time to study medical transcription services firms, you will realize that they are willing to pay expensive rents in order to stay in a busy business district; a place where business and healthcare activities are at its peak.
The location you choose to open your medical transcription services firm is key to the success of the business, hence entrepreneurs are willing to rent or lease a facility in a visible location; a location where the demography consist of hospitals and health care services providers with the require purchasing power.
So, if you are looking for a location for your medical transcription services firm, ensure that it is a place that is located in a business district in your city, a place that is visible and easily accessible. Of course, you would not want to locate this type of business in the outskirt of town. Your clients should be able to drive down and locate your office with little or no difficulty.
Most importantly, before choosing a location for your medical transcription services firm, ensure that you first conduct a thorough feasibility studies and market survey. The possibility of you coming across similar business that just closed shop in the location you want to open yours can’t be ruled out.
Starting a Medical Transcription Business – Technical and Manpower Details
On the average, there is no special technology or equipment needed to run this type of business except for voice recorder, customized medical transcription services software and other related software apps and social media management software applications. You will definitely need computers, internet facility, telephone, fax machine and office furniture (chairs, tables, and shelves).
When it comes to choosing between renting and leasing an office space, the size of the medical transcription services firm you want to build and your entire budget for the business should influence your choice. If you have enough capital to run a standard medical transcription services firm then you should consider the option of leasing a facility for your office.
As regards the number of employees that you are expected to kick start the business with, you would need to consider your finance before making the decision. Averagely, you would need a Chief Executive Officer, Transcribers and Writers, Admin and HR Manager, Business Developer, Accountant, Customer Service Executive/Front Desk Officer.
Over and above, you would need a minimum of 5 to 10 key staff to effectively run a medium scale but standard medical transcription services firm.
The Service Delivery Process of a Medical Transcription Services Business
The way medical transcription services firms work varies from one agency to another, but ideally, a medical transcription services firm is expected to first and foremost build a robust company profile before sourcing for clients.
Basically, when clients hire your services, they expect you to effectively handle everything as it relates to transcribing medical cases, providing well- arranged scripts and other related concerns. Depending on the agreement reached by both parties, you are expected to work from your office when you get the recording of the cases. But in some cases, you can work directly in the hospital or healthcare facility.
It is important to state that a medical transcription services firm may decide to improvise or adopt any business process and structure that will guarantee them good return on investment (ROI) efficiency and flexibility; the above stated medical transcription services process is not cast on stone.
Starting a Medical Transcription Business – The Marketing Plan
- Marketing ideas and Strategies
As a medical transcription services firm owner, you would have to prove your worth over and over again before attracting corporate organizations and individuals to hire your services. So, if you have plans to start your own medical transcription services firm, it will pay you to build first build a successful career in the document preparation services industry.
People and organizations will only hire your services if they know that they are going to get good medical transcription services.
So, when you are drafting your marketing plans and strategies for your medical transcription services firm, make sure that you create a compelling personal and company profile. Aside from your qualifications and experience, it is important to clearly state what you have been able to achieve in time past as it relates to the document preparation services industry and the organizations you have worked for in time past. This will help boost your chances in the market place when sourcing for clients/investors.
Here are some of the platforms you can utilize to market your medical transcription services firm;
- Introduce your business by sending introductory letters alongside your brochure to residences, corporate organizations and all businesses involved in healthcare fields such as hospitals, physicians, and healthcare related organizations within and outside the city you are operating in who have the capacity to pay for your services
- Advertise your business in relevant healthcare magazines, radio and TV stations
- List your business on local directories/yellow pages
- Attend international healthcare expos, seminars and business fairs
- Create different packages for different category of clients in order to work for them
- Leverage on the internet to promote your business
- Join local chambers of commerce and industries around you with the main aim of networking and marketing your services; you are likely going to get referrals from such networks
- Engage the services of marketing executives and business developers to carry out direct marketing
Factors That Will Help You Get the Right Pricing
One key factor that will help you offer your medical transcription services at a price that is highly attractive is to ensure that you source your working capital from sources that won’t put pressure on you or give you high interest rates.
Another strategy that will help you offer your medical transcription services at the right price is to ensure that you cut operational cost to the barest minimum and channel your efforts towards marketing and promoting your brand name. Aside from the fact that this strategy will help you save cost, it will also help you get the right pricing for your products and services.
You can also try as much as possible to work with independent contractors and marketers; it will help you save cost for paying sales and marketing executives.
Strategies to Boost Your Medical Transcription Business Brand Awareness and Create Your Corporate Identity
If you are in business and you are not deliberate about boosting you brand awareness and communicating your corporate identity, then you should be ready to take on whatever the society portrays your business to be.
If your intention of starting a medical transcription services firm is to grow the business beyond the city where you are going to be operating from to become a national and international brand, then you must be ready to spend money on promotion and advertisement of your brand.
In promoting your brand and corporate identity, you should leverage on the print, electronic and also social media (the internet). As a matter of fact, it is cost effective to use the internet and social media platforms to promote your brands, besides it is pretty much effective and wide reaching.
Below are the platforms you can leverage on to boost your brand and to promote and advertise your medical transcription services firm;
- Place adverts on healthcare related magazines and newspapers, radio and TV stations
- Encourage the use of word of mouth publicity from your loyal customers
- Leverage on the internet and social media platforms like YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Snapchat, Google+ and other platforms to promote your business.
- Ensure that you position your banners and billboards in strategic positions all around your city
- Distribute your fliers and handbills in target hospitals and healthcare facilities in and around your neighborhood
- Contact corporate organizations and all businesses involved in healthcare fields, such as hospitals, physicians, and healthcare related organizations within and outside the city you are operating in who have the capacity to pay for your services by calling them up and informing them of your organization and the services you offer
- Advertise your business in your official website and employ strategies that will help you pull traffic to the site
- Brand all your official cars and ensure that all our staff members and management staff wears your branded shirt or cap at regular intervals
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