With more and more people working from home these days, it’s easy to see why online transcription sites like QA World have started becoming more popular in recent years.
But is it legit? QA World is an online transcription platform where both experienced and inexperienced typists can work on a flexible schedule and earn an average of $3 an hour. It’s probably legit, but there are a few major red flags to watch out for.
Read on for the full review.
What’s QA World About and How Does It Work?
QA World is an online transcription company that offers work (albeit with very little compensation) to both experienced and inexperienced typists.
It’s really similar to a company called Rev, which we’ve also reviewed.
If you’re just starting out as a potential transcriptionist, QA World can be a great way to get your foot in the door, because they give you the freedom of working as much or as little as you want.
Becoming a transcriptionist with them is simple.
First you go to their website and enter in some basic information, like your name and email.
And as a brief interjection, some people claim that QA World is only out to get your email address so they can send you loads of spam and market (something?) to you.
Throughout my research, though, I’ve found this claim to be largely unfounded.
Moving on, after entering in your info, you’ll then be emailed a link to a short application test.
This test consists of a 30 second long audio for you to transcribe. It’s meant to test your spelling, English comprehension, and grammar.
Once you’ve completed this test transcription, you’ll be immediately told if you’ve passed or not. And don’t worry if you didn’t pass, because they allow you to go back and just try again.
If you do pass, then you’re redirected to a page that tells you about the pay rate, which is $.20 per minute of audio.
Another interjection here – that’s really low for the industry. And on top of that, the rate varies based on the difficulty and overall audio quality.
For (almost?) all the audios you complete, you’ll get paid on a weekly basis every Wednesday evening – but more on that later.
QA World pays only through PayPal, and the main way you can contact them for support if any discrepancies should arise is through the Slack workspace.
You will then be asked to enter in your PayPal email for payment and you will be brought to a video that explains how the site works.
Then you’re ready to watch the training videos and start transcribing.
Also worth noting is that, while you’re going through the training period, you’ll be brought to an FAQ page that you will also have to take a quiz on.
Who’s behind QA World?
When completing the application process for becoming a transcriber, the non-disclosure agreement reveals that Clover Intelligence is the company behind QA World.
Though not much information about Clover Intelligence is readily available, a quick Google search reveals that Clover Intelligence is doing business under the name of Voice Ops, after they changed the name in 2016.
Voice Ops is a San Francisco-based company that is focused on call centers. They bring in about $1.8 million in annual revenue, which is continuing to grow.
This company sells services to call centers that analyze their calls to give feedback on improving sales.
This is done using Artificial Intelligence transcriptions that analyzes the data of the phone calls.
It seems to be a little odd that they’re using AI when they’re in charge of a company that hires real transcriptionists, which would make me a little uncomfortable with the long-term stability of the job.
How Much Can You Make With QA World?
According to QA World, average earners make around $130 per week, and top transcriptionists earn $375 a week.
Here’s red flag number one – the top earner amount.
While $375 a week certainly doesn’t seem like anything to gawk at – although it would be enough to substantiate a full-time income if need be.
But the problem arises when you realize how much one would have to work to earn that much money.
To put it into perspective, the average transcriptionist takes four hours to complete one hour of audio – an experienced transcriptionist could do it in three hours.
At the $0.20 per audio minute pay rate, you would need to complete a little over 31 hours of audio per week to make $375.
So, if you worked every day of the week, you would have to complete 4.5 hours of audio per day – meaning you would have to work about 18 hours a day, 7 days a week!
Something about that seems a little unrealistic to me. At the very least, I’m led to believe that either the “top earner” has people working for them, or the top earner’s weekly amount is an overstatement. Not to mention that you would be making only about $3 per hour on average.
And granted, that’s more than nothing, especially since some of QA World’s workers seem to be from countries where the U.S. dollar goes a lot farther (judging from reviews on their Facebook page).
But either way, working that much doesn’t even allot you a proper eight hours of sleep per night – far less if you accounted for eating, bathroom breaks, and the like.
Is QA World a Scam?
QA World most likely is not a scam, but there are a few more red flags that one should consider before you decide to join them.
For one thing, there’s a few pieces of contradictory information found on various parts of their website through various portions of the signup process.
For example, the page after the transcription sample test stated that you’ll get paid every Wednesday evening. But the FAQ page states that you’ll get paid anywhere from Tuesday to Thursday.
While it might not seem very important (and Wednesday does fall between those days), things as basic and important as paydays should be something you can know with certainty.
The next red flag is about how much you have to work. On the home page of QA World, they state that you can work “from home, with flexible hours, at your own pace.”
They neglect to mention the fact that they expect you to complete 120 minutes of audio per week. And while it’s not technically required, it’s hard to tell the difference between “expectation” and “requirement” in this situation.
There is also an FAQ question that says, “Are all the calls I worked on going to be paid?” The answer is no – which is probably the biggest (and most obvious) red flag on here.
You will only get paid for your transcript if it’s rated at a 3 out of 5 or above. If they are rated as a 1 or 2, you will not be paid.
This is a monumental issue, because the number one complaint found in nearly every negative review left on the company’s Facebook page states that they had been wrongly given a 1- or 2-star review multiple times for as little as one or two minor errors.
Some people even claim they’ve worked for hours on a file, just to not get paid. But if that’s you, don’t worry, because QA World has a 90-minute re-do courtesy.
In the event that you have a low rated file, you’ll receive what’s called a re-do email. Once the email has been sent, the 90 minutes starts counting down.
If you manage to redo it, there’s the chance you could end up getting paid, or you could just end up wasting more time.
What I Like
- Hours are flexible
- You can work from home
- You don’t need any experience
What I Don’t Like
- There’s some misleading information at best, some blatantly false information at worst
- There’s some contradictory information from various spots on their website
- It takes an unrealistic amount of work to make enough money to substantiate a full-time or part-time income
My Overall Opinion
Taking everything into consideration, QA World is probably legit. There is the possibility to make money if you give accurate transcripts that are getting rated well.
However, when looking at the fact that it takes a lot of work to make an amount comparable to an actual job, this is better suited as a stepping stone to gain some experience before looking at other transcription work.
Don’t be discouraged, though – transcription is a legitimate work-from-home job opportunity that can actually pay you well for your time. This article shows you how to do just that.