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Data Entry Operator/TranscriptionistAlternative titles

Kaiwhakauru Raraunga/Kaipatopato Kōrero

This job is sometimes referred to as:

Keyboard Operator
Dictaphone Typist
Medical Typist
Court Reporter

Data entry operators/transcriptionists transcribe and copy information that is spoken or written.

Contact us

Call us on 0800 222 733


Pay for data entry operators/transcriptionists depends on their speed, accuracy and experience, as well as their employer. 

  • Most data entry operators/transcriptionists earn between $30,000 and $45,000 a year.
  • Specialist medical typists usually earn between $38,000 and $60,000 a year. 

Source: Hays 2014 Salary Guide; New Zealand Medical Association Primary Health Care MECA 2012-2014.

What you will do

Data entry operators/transcriptionists may do some or all of the following:

  • copy information from one form to another - eg from hand written forms to computerised ones
  • type verbatim (word for word) from recorded conversations or dictation
  • check, edit and print documents
  • proofread written work.

Skills and knowledge

Data entry operators/transcriptionists need:

  • a typing speed of at least 60 words per minute
  • excellent computer and word processing skills
  • to be familiar with word-processing and other computer packages
  • good vocabulary and excellent spelling and grammar
  • good communication skills.

Working conditions

Data entry operators/transcriptionists:

  • usually work regular business hours, but sometimes do shift or casual work
  • usually work in offices but may work from home.

What's the job really like?

Eric Faafiti - Court Reporter

Eric Faafiti says being a court reporter is not just about typing speed. "It's not just a typing role – it's different. You have to have a good command of the English language and a decent familiarisation with Microsoft Word, plus an interest in the law."

Staying focused and paying attention to detail key to the job

Eric transcribes court cases and types up judges decisions, which requires a lot of attention to detail. He says you know when you've done a good job because your work doesn't come back from a judge with lots of amendments.

"You have to be quite a focused person because what you're doing is an official document. There's no time to be distracted."

Getting to see the workings of the courts

An interest in law is essential, and Eric says he enjoys the finer points of legal debates. "It gives you a bigger picture of what's actually happening – what were the causes? What was the story behind the story?"

"If you are someone who enjoys law and enjoys what happens in court – the theatrics of court - then you're the ideal person to be doing this role."


Data entry operators/transcriptionists usually earn
per year
Source: Hays 2014 Salary Guide, New Zealand Medical Association Primary Health Care MECA 2012-2014.
A woman at a desk with headphones on reading a transcript

To ensure accuracy, typists and court reporters often check each other's work

Updated 8 Jan 2015