Focus Group Transcription

The Process

I have been transcribing focus groups for many years, be it focus groups conducted as a means of gathering consumer related research data or as part of an academic research study. Having your focus group recordings transcribed by Etranscript is a convenient process as explained below.

Record your Focus Group Session

As with the recording of any multi-voice situation, the audio quality and recording environment are critical to the accuracy and coherence of the final transcript. As a first step to addressing these challenges, ensure that you make use of the best recording equipment possible within your budget constraints. When making your recording, take cognisance of the suggestions on the Tips for Recording Focus Groups page to prepare your environment and your participants.


In addition to the tips provided, ensure that the recording device is set to make a high-quality recording using an uncompressed file format. The file format should be “.wav”. More about file formats here.

Send Files to Etranscript for Transcription

There are a number of methods available to facilitate a convenient and secure transfer or your focus group recordings:


Etranscript will send a “Dropbox File Request” to you. Make use of the link contained in the email to upload your audio files via this encrypted file transfer process. This is an easy, safe and reliable process that is used by most of Etranscript’s clients.


Use a cloud storage facility of your choice such as Google Drive or Microsoft’s OneDrive.


Make use of a secure FTP or HTTPS facility of your own.

Transcription of your Focus Group Recordings

A formal acknowledgement of receipt of your files will be emailed to you. The transcription of your focus group recordings will then proceed using either the voice-name attributed transcript format or the non-voice-name attributed transcript format. The choice of format will depend on the researcher’s requirements. Navigate to the Transcript Types page to read additional information about these transcript types.


The turnaround time for the transcription of your focus group recordings is dependent on a number of factors. More about this on the Turnaround Time page.

Completed Transcript is Sent to You

Once transcription of the focus group recording is complete, the transcript will be checked by replaying the entire recording and correcting any spelling or grammar errors made during the transcription process. At this time, I will make additional attempts to discern voice input that may be challenging to due cross-talking or substandard audio quality. Once this checking process is complete, the transcript will be sent to you either via email or via an encrypted file transfer facility.

Group of people seated around table with facilitator at the front of the room with whiteboard conducting a focus group session
Group of people seated around table for focus group discussion