A community of 30,000 US Transcriptionist serving Medical Transcription Industry

Taking the plunge - Enuf ie Enuf

Posted: Feb 20, 2011

After having been an MT for over half of my life and constantly reading these forums and realizing the shortcomings we are all facing in this industry, I'm taking the plunge.

Yesterday my husband and I bought 2 domain names, ordered 500 business cards, my husband is researching MT salaries nationwide, and we're going to start our own MTSO.  An MTSO run by HUMAN BEINGS for HUMAN BEINGS.  A small one, we're looking at probably 20 or less ICs to ensure ample work for everyone.  We already have 2 FT'ers already wanting to sign on as soon as we're up and running and a third person who wishes to be on board part-time. 

I'm compiling a list of things I loved about certain employers and things which I found unacceptable.  I also told my husband I wanted some type of incentive program for the "highest producer of the month" (a small monetary bonus), as well as just monthly "token" gifts, MT related, whether it's a top-of-the-line hand creme, a customized mousepad with the ICs favorite picture (which the MT would provide), or even a Starbucks card.  SOMETHING to show the ICs every month just how much they are appreciated.

I've started my list of contacts and am going to concentrate on those physicians who have small, 1-4 MDs on staff and are not taking kindly to voice recognition and prefer good-fashioned dictation and transcription.  No VR.  Most assuredly NO offshoring.  In fact, the back of my business card clearly states my EIN # and "ALL SERVICES PROUDLY PROVIDED IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA."

I figure within 12-18 months, I should have an internet-based platform in place, all my ICs ready to go, an accounting software/linecounting program, and hopefully enough word of mouth from satisfied physicians that we'll either have to hire more ICs or turn work away. 

I'm excited beyond words.  And when the time comes, you can rest assured I'll be placing an ad on MTStars and snapping up some of you highly-qualified MTs to come on board our team, where you'll not only be paid fairly but you'll also never feel like a number.

I may not be able to change the state of affairs of medical transcription, but with a little practicality and a lot of determination (and a whole lot of experience behind me plus my husband's bookkeeping skills), I have no doubt we can make this a "go."

Wish us luck with our venture.  We've had more than a few sleepless nights already brainstorming and loving every second of it, LOL!

Re taking the plunge... - cr

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That is so wonderful! I wish you the best. I for one would be interested in coming on board as a part-time MT when you're ready.

Good Luck - Linda

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I wish you much success...

Wonderful, Enuf! Your plan sounds very FINE. :) - BEST of luck! Pragmatist

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FANTASTIC!! May you have a MT waiting list a mile long (sm) - Yochana

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and a doctor/clinic waiting list 2 miles long once they hear how wonderful you are. It can be done. My dad was the most sought after paint contractor in our small town and had a waiting list over a year long. He gave top-notch quality painting, always doing the little extra things for his customers free of charge and he had a wonderful business. Hope your business grows and grows and grows.

Thanks so much - I kind of feel like 1 foot in door - Taking the Plunge

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I've worked for all of the local hospitals and other facilities, so I think most of them will be familiar with the quality of my work. Once I get the business cards, I'm going to order about 2 dozen coffee mugs or pens, something that will make a bit of an impact. I'm even going to tell them I'm willing to pick up the slack if their regular MT goes on vacation, maternaity leave, etc., just so I have a window of time to prove myself. I have juggled 3 heavy private accounts in the past, too, and the complaint I heard the most when I was hired was that the previous MTs never had the work completed and ready on time and, at times, would simply disappear for a couple of weeks, leaving the doc in the lurch.

The more I think about it, the more I realize I can really make a go of this. I figure 4-6 months to get my name out there and get a few smaller accounts, and from there will likely be advertising for ICs. I'm hoping also to target some of those docs who invested in their own VR system and aren't happy with it as it takes away from patient care time.

The game plan is in place and once I have my "props," I'm going after it full speed ahead, LOL!
Self-employment - Happy MT
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Good luck to you. You sound like a super nice person and truly, what goes around comes around. I truly believe in Karma.

I have employed part and full timers for 20 years. I always treated them the way I wanted to be treated. Couple of girls were with me for six years, and only left because change in work load. I always sent a nice gift at Christmas time, unlike a girl I typed for who sent coffee mug with her company name on it. A tip for you, don't ever do that (though I don't think you would). That mug went in my next Good Will bag (I have tons of coffee mugs already...)

It is not easy, keeping accounts, such huge turnover in this field. My experience has been people really inflating their qualifications AND availability. Sounded great on paper. ALWAYS test. You can tell so much from one simple short voice file. Had a gal sound fantastic on paper last week, returned me test full of misspelled medical terms and terrible grammar; no periods. Unreal. I did tell her I was stunned someone testing for an MT job returned such poor product. She replied "I have no foot pedal." Unreal.

Honestly, I wish you all the best in your endeavor, but be prepared for some headaches when you have people working for you. All I ask, and have ever asked of IC's working for me is good communication of their availability.

You see companies advertise on here that say "if you cannot meet all the requirements of this job please do not apply." I have come to learn why they put that, because you get dozens of applications and many of them have no intention of fulfilling your requirements.

Again, all my best to you.

Thank you so much (see message about headaches) - Taking the Plunge
[ In Reply To ..]
I already have 3 previous co-workers lined up who would like to come to work for me and I would indeed contact with them....HOWEVER, here's where the potential headaches come in.

I'm very proficient at separating personal and professional, and a couple of other former co-workers have also approached me. Love them to death as friends but they aren't ICs I would be able to rely on at all. Sloppy work habits, unreliable (one in particular works from home and called in once for diarrhea and once for cramps....I'm not an unreasonable person but...well, she worked from home; I'd been to her house and her bathroom was literally 7 steps from her computer and for the life of me I couldn't figure out why she didn't just take some Imodium or, in the other case, some Midol and just work - note that she always seemed to pull this whenever we had a huge backlog and really needed all hands on deck, so to speak). The other one who approached me is also a great gal, has reasonable skills, but is most assuredly a "water-cooler" type of worker...you know, the kind who knows - or pretends to know - everybody's business and will shout it from the rooftops.

I'm diplomatic enough to work around NOT offering them a position but I do feel blessed to already have 3-4 MTs lined up who have a great work ethic and who I know if I were to become ill they would make it their personal responsibility to keep things afloat until I recuperated.

LOL @ the coffee mugs...I'm intending on using those, a couple of pens, and my business card together as a little gift package when I go cold-calling on small accounts where I know regular MTs are still utilized. I figure if I can get the opportunity to chit-chat with th office manager (particularly if it's someone I know through my years of MTing in the local area), it will be a well-appreciated gesture and have more of an impact than simply handing over just my business card, which could be misplaced.

I know one thing...If (fingers crossed) I can get this to take flight, there are more than a few posters here I would love to snap up because their passion for and dedication to the profession just shines through in their posts.
Taking the plunge - Happy MT
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I sure hope things work out for you. I posted last year some time about difficulty finding really good people, speed, work ethic, etc. The board was overall so rude and ugly to me. Yet about 5 or 6 people contacted me saying they were interested in a job. Talk about subject to interpretation. One of those ladies still working for me. There's just no reason for people who are so unhappy in this field to be so argumentative and ugly in their posts. I don't come here often for that reason. I can guarantee you those who were so negative to and about me, have never attempted to employ people.

I have always wondered how large services find enough good people. I'm with you, it is soooo easy to work from home even sick. Many, many times I would have had to call in sick if I had to go out to an office, but NEVER sick working from home when you can rest, etc.

I'm sure you'll do great. I have just seen so many changes in clients and MT's. I could write a book....

Oh, and another HUGE mistake I made, being too forthcoming with MT's who work for me about my clients. Talk about live and learn. Should have never involved them in my business as I did. Hard to do because I became so friendly with couple of them, but big, big mistake.
Unreliable ICs - SEO
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ROFL I had someone covering for me once in an emergency and their "keyboard broke." No joke. And evidently, they couldn't just go get one for two days.
Wanted to add - SEO
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I am not saying ALL ICs are unreliable. Someone will certainly think I was. I am an IC and I am extraordinarily reliable. I am just seconding the motion that some ICs are exceptionally unreliable.
THIS is my biggest fear when the time comes to hire - Taking the plunge
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That and, as I said in an earlier post, I have a couple of very good friends whom I adore on a personal level but on a professional level...um, thanks but no thanks! Your friend sounds like my friend who was unable to work because she had diarrhea...Although her bathroom was literally 7 steps from her computer. Unreliable with a capital U, LOL!
In defense of IC, employ status restricts how much I can - work. Prefer to work a lot, hence IC. nm
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Good luck - old MT

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I hope your enthusiasm is also where it is today, a year from now.

The reality of MT is not always what we think and the grass is not always greener on the other side.

I wish you great success. I wonder, however, why are you hiring ICs and not hiring employees with insurance and PTO?

Purely for cost-effective reasons so I can pay more - Taking the plunge

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I want my ICs to have all the freedom they need to work the hours that work best for them and to be able to pay them top wages...That is, wages on which they'll have the freedom to secure their own private policies without being "insurance poor" due to a cost-prohibitive company plan.

Re: Taking the plunge - kjh

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Good luck to you! Your plan sounds just great and I would be interested in coming on board when the time comes. Keep us posted on how things are going. :)

Do you have a company name already - Good Luck

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Do you have a name for your company already?  Want to keep an eye out for it when you are ready to hire in six months.  Will keep our fingers crossed and say a prayer for your success. 

Good Luck.  Wish you the best. 



Yes, have already purchased the domain and have the biz cards ordered too - Taking the plunge

[ In Reply To ..]
We figured it would be best to snap up the domain at the same time we ordered the business cards. I'm also going to be ordering coffee mugs, hats, t-shirts, mousepads, and other little "thank you" type gifts for my ICs. We're going next week to secure an LLC and have any attorney help us draft up contracts as well.

As I said, depending on how swamped (or not swamped) I am with clients, I'm anticipating 6 months on the VERY optimistic side and 18 months at the very outside to have everything up and running. And everything done here in the good old USA :-)

Domain names - SEO

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I know you didn't ask my advice, but make sure you register both the .com and the .org. I do some general for an SEO and marketing company and sometimes that ends up being a huge deal. You don't have to have web pages on both, you can have one direct to the other.

I am SO excited for you!
Ooooh, thanks for that tip! (see message) - Taking the Plunge
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I saw the .net and .org, but told my husband to just grab the .com because the .com always seem to be the most popular. I'm going to back right now and snatch up the .org. Do you think I should grab the .net too?
.net - SEO
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If you can, I would. And like I said, you don't even have to set up webpages on them, you can just have them redirect to your .com. That way once your business is brisk, which I believe it will be, some other company can't come along, use the exact same web address but with .org or .net and really get any business meant for you but by people who accidentally type in .org.

And since you didn't chide me for sticking my nose in where it totally doesn't belong, social media is big in SEO, too. So, snatch up the Twitter and business Facebook if you can.
Not at all, I appreciate ALL input - Taking the Plunge
[ In Reply To ..]
I'm appreciating all the feedback I'm getting here so, nope, you're definitely not going to be chided by me for offering advice. That's what these boards are about, IMO.

I already snapped up the FB page and the .com, and my husband is sitting down right now at his computer to snap up the .org and .net domains (GREAT advice!).

I also appreciated the poster here in the thread warning me about having ICs and giving monthly gifts as those can be miscontrued. I'll do a little more research into that but the way I'll approach it if I have to is make it a monthly raffle for various things (work-related or personal things, even gift cards). I'll find a way to show my ICs my appreciation in a legal way, that's for sure.

Today we're going to get some documents notarized and my husband is going to be working with an attorney friend of his this week to draft up some sort of contract. So, baby steps but we're getting there...yeehaw!!!

Good luck to you!!! - Zville MT

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I truly hope it works out for you! I would like to have your website/company name - I would love to work for real humans for a change ;)

As soon as I pick up enough accounts where I have overflow - Taking the Plunge

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I'll be posting here on MTStars. I have the website up and running but don't think I'd be allowed to post it here. In 2 weeks, I'm going to start canvassing facilities such as independent cardiology, orthoopedics, geriatrics, physical medicine, family practice clinics, etc. I think this is the perfect time of year to get my pedicured little toes in the door because we'll be diromg the "vacation season," where MTs will be needing vacation cover.

Yes I am smiling and doing a preemptive happy dance in my chair, LOL!

Congratulations, & best wishes for success & - happiness! - MT Wordz

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My hope is that more businesses like yours will spring up all over the country, to accommodate those MDs who don't want to compromise when it comes to quality, accurate medical records.

Good for you for doing this, and good luck with your MT business!

Good luck. Hope you dont find out why many MTSO operate - as they do with low paying dr wanting SM

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impossible TAT, wanting use of VR cause they have been told it is better and if MTSO doesnt use it MTSO must be behind the times and dr then goes with MTSO that does provide VR. Yes, some will be willing to pay for US MT but not enough to support industry and maybe not even enough to support one new MTSO who wants to pay decent wage and offer bennies.

Much luck to you! - dmt

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Greatly admire your ambition and hope you are hugely successful! Let us know how it's going for you, am certain you'll have many responses from here when you put out the call for more MTs. Please post back, am very interested in following how things go for you. Best of luck!!

I promise that I will. I suspect that I'm not the only MT - Taking the Plunge

[ In Reply To ..]
I suspect I'm not the only MT who is so disheartened to see the direction our beloved careers are taking and since Iam seeing a window of opportunity to make even the smallest of changes for the betterment of my fellow MTs, I just feel compelled to go with it. Maybe it will end up just being a small MTSO with 10-15 MTs...But at least it's my hope to make those 10-15 MTs feel some respect and appreciation and a way to remind some of these open-minded docs that to pay a bit more for quality work is certainly a far better choice than saving a few bucks and running a huge liability risk.

Everyone keep your fingers crossed for me and if anyone would like to email me privately with any questions about starting such a strategy on their own, I'd be more than happy to respond.

Happy Monday, everyone...and let's try to make this week a happy and productive one for all of us!

Love your enthusiasm!! - bout time

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I wish you the best!! Hope more people decide to do the same and jump on board. The best deserve the best. Power to you and good luck:) I hope you reap the rewards.

There are things to consider with your plan. sm - Reality Check - MTSO

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If you have ICs, the IRS and unemployment offices could come in and fine you if not handled properly.

With ICs, you can not legally give incentives or gifts. Be careful not to cross the very fine line.

Without a platform, without bells and whistles, your rates will be lower than, but so will your expenses. Be careful not to undercut yourself - never, never go under 13cpl. Some services say 15cpl. Otherwise, you cannot possibly grow or make money.

Be careful, do your research, be honest with your transcriptionists and with your customers, work hard but make sure that you don't let the business run your life and you will do well!

Wishing you the very best success! Love your enthusiasm!

Thank you, beyond words, for taking the plunge! Will gladly contribute my ethics and skills if you - stay true to your words.

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With very best wishes for a successful venture!

Taking the plunge - pennywisecmt

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Maybe we will all come work for you!

Congratulations and I wish you all the best. - Excited

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We need someone who realizes we are humans. I am starting with a smaller company after working for a larger one for over 5 years. I am hoping that the more personal companies will be better. You got to start somewhere and I am excited to see you have the courage to do this.

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