To provide secretarial services and start a secretarial business, you will need a computer, major word processing program, and a printer.
You don’t need a high-end computer for word processing. You can even get a used computer. You’ll only need a more powerful system if you want to provide graphic design or web design services.
Most computers come with a word processing program. When providing secretarial and word processing services, I recommend using Microsoft Word because most of your clients will use it.
Many secretarial services start their business with an inkjet printer because inkjets are less expensive than laser printers. A laser printer provides better quality printouts and faster speed. Your clients will expect laser printouts if you provide graphic design or resumes services.
Some clients may want to fax you documents they want typed. You can use your computer to send and receive faxes but you’ll only be able to send faxes of documents you have in your computer.
Transcription can be a good profit center for a secretarial service as it can provide you with many hours of typing work. In addition to medical professionals, a wide range of individuals and organizations outsource transcription services. Your transcription clients may include insurance companies, universities, financial institutions, authors, consultants, focus groups and public speakers.
To provide transcription services, you will need a transcription machine. Transcribers have a headset and foot pedal that allows you to stop and rewind the cassette with your feet while having your hands available for typing. Cassettes for traditional tape transcription come in different sizes: mini cassettes, standard cassettes and micro cassettes. Until you have a transcription client, you won’t know which size cassettes you’ll get. Talk to your prospective clients before buying any transcription equipment.
Digital transcription is becoming more popular. Although the majority of physicians and businesses are still using tapes to record dictation, many are starting to use digital voice recorders.
Transcription machines are available from Sony, Panasonic, Olympus, Lanier, Sanyo, and Dictaphone. Check local and online office supply stores such as Office Depot, OfficeMax and Office Direct.
You can buy new and used transcription machines, computers, and other equipment at a fraction of the cost at eBay.
If you already have a computer, you can start a secretarial business and provide secretarial services and word processing inexpensively. You can start your secretarial business with just a computer and printer and buy additional equipment or software later when a project requires it.