When we started, most other companies had no defined accurate transcription services guarantee.

Over the years, many have copied what we’ve done (since 2010), and are now, finally, guaranteeing their work.

But while others claim to “guarantee” accuracy… how? To what degree? And by whose standards?

Unless a “guarantee” is given in writing, stating specifically how you’re covered if a standard is unmet, you’re shouldering too much risk.

When a guarantee lacks specificity, it can’t be enforced.

Expect Perfection’s accuracy guarantee is below, sans hoop-jumping or any hidden stipulations.

professional checking for accurate transcription services

How is Transcript Accuracy Guaranteed?

The Quick & Dirty Explanation

(Tap or hover here.)

Should any of your transcripts be produced at a score lower than 99.5% (or 98% for draft transcripts)…

Unless we’ve promised another percentage before delivery (i.e., for very degraded audio), we’ll correct your document for FREE until you’re satisfied or it reaches the standard.

Just email to let us know. No arm-twisting, lengthy forms, or hunting us down required. Corrections will be completed for you usually within 2 hours to 2 business days.

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How Accuracy is Determined

See how unintelligibles, misinterpretations, and phonetic spellings affect a transcript’s accuracy percentage.

If we rewind your audio 3 to 5 times and still don’t feel sure that we’ve correctly been able to decipher a particular term, it’s marked as unintelligible. The term is NEVER guessed.


With general conversation, it can be difficult enough to capture the true meaning of one’s speech with all the variances in intonation, phrasing, diction, jargon, and idiosyncrasies unique to that speaker. This holds true even between the familiar, such as family members and the best of friends.

How many times in your life have you had to say:

“No, no, Sarah; I didn’t mean it that way!”

…and that’s when the listener has heard every word that you’ve said!

Consider the disaster that could happen, then, should a transcriptionist guess at something a stranger over an audio tape has uttered, when they don’t have the benefit of body language, lip-reading, or any prior knowledge of the speaker to assist in their interpretation.


So, despite a transcriptionist’s familiarity with your particular industry, terminology, and contextual clues, there still remains too much room for error to risk a “guess” at any phrase. And so, if there are any “unintelligibles” present in your document, they’re due to a lack of utter certainty on the part of the transcriber.

Was there significant background noise in the audio, for instance, and the speaker referred to “a grievous” error, but our transcriptionist heard “egregious”? This would be classified as a misinterpretation—indeed, a somewhat nice way of saying an “error in interpretation.”

Thus, a misinterpretation, as I’m sure you’ve gathered, is neither a phonetic spelling nor a phrase that is indecipherable. By contrast, it’s simply a word that is misheard.

Misinterpretations are “nasties” that we try assiduously to avoid and generally do succeed at eliminating. They are what we absolutely do not want and take great measures to protect against.

[styled_box]Tip: After transcription, your audio is listened to at least one additional time to ensure that what was transcribed was actually what was spoken.[/styled_box]

While we make every effort to ensure that misinterpretations happen very rarely, when factoring in fast-talkers, mutterers, whisperers and the like, coupled with wildly varying audio quality, the nature of the beast is that due to these factors, a misinterpretation may occasionally slip surreptitiously past even the most vigilant of transcriptionists.

However, that’s where free corrections come into play. If needed, we’ll fix your transcript generally within 24–48 hours of the time you alert us to any problem.

This is one thing that doesn’t affect a document’s accuracy percentage.

Remember the thing about “guessing” that we admonished against above? That still holds true, but we’re going to elaborate further and slide in a condition under which a transcriber and/or editor may make an “educated estimation.” When they do, those terms are marked as phonetic spellings [colored]to help save you time[/colored] and deliver an even more readable, accurate transcription.

[styled_box]Having made an “educated guess” means that the transcriptionist is relatively sure, beyond a reasonable doubt, that Speaker X has, indeed, uttered a particular thing. It also means that the transcriber and/or editor has researched the term or phrase and decided that it does seem industry- and/or topic-appropriate.[/styled_box]

If a term is marked as a phonetic spelling, it typically means that there are at least a few other seemingly topic-appropriate terms/phrases that sound similar, such that the transcriptionist wasn’t sure, without doubt, of which one was spoken. And so, the term is followed by [phonetic] so that you can interpret it easier, right from the transcript.

[styled_box]This helps save you time that you’d otherwise spend on having to try to drill down to an obscure section of the audio to investigate.[/styled_box]

In summary, phonetic spellings don’t count against the accuracy score because they almost always help you discern the true term in context (due to your more comprehensive knowledge of your audio). And since a phonetic spelling is often a proper name or industry-specific term or acronym that the transcriber or editor was unable to verify with research, it doesn’t affect a transcript’s accuracy.

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But You Won’t Need to Worry.

Want to know something cool?

Since January 2010, only one client has returned a transcript
for corrections—even considering those who had
the most degraded, most challenging audio. (She was one.)

So while we’re always here if you need us,
the good news is… you probably won’t.

professional confident about accurate transcription guarantee

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