Dreaming about a job where you choose your own hours, operate from anywhere in the world, manage your own workload, and perform duties that add value? One career that reaps all these benefits – and more – is scribing.
Scribing is a unique, rewarding line of work. Scribes play an important role in recruitment by taking detailed, accurate minutes for interviews conducted by selection committees. They then write quality reports, relied on by committee members to make decisions about candidates. Great scribes save clients time, money, and effort.
Beyond note-taking, some scribes offer other critical recruitment services, including conducting reference checks, assisting with correct processes, and ranking applicants. Some even act as independent panel members.
This expert article explores the top questions asked about becoming a scribe and outlines the support face2face Recruitment provides to our dynamic team of scribes.
What are the benefits of scribing?
- earn or supplement income
- maintain desired lifestyle
- fill gaps in employment
- work when and for how long you like
- work from anywhere, including home
- work autonomously
- meet new people
- learn new topics.
What type of people enjoy scribing?
Scribes come from diverse backgrounds and have varying skills and experiences. Scribing roles suit many personality types and stages of life. Here are examples:
- retired or semi-retired people love scribing for the stimulation, ability to make extra money, and the freedom to work without having a negative impact on lifestyle
- contractors enjoy scribing in between ‘gigs’ because they can earn income while looking for their next contract
- people who love to learn appreciate scribing since it opens doors to new subject matter
- stay-at-home parents love scribing to stay in touch with the work world and meet new contacts without compromising on family duties
- people who want a few days or a few weeks of work here or there appreciate scribing for its flexibility
- ex-government employees still wanting to stay active in the workplace appreciate scribing, including for the flexible arrangements
- students pursuing higher education find scribing beneficial because they can fit assignments in without affecting their studies.
What skills do I need to become a scribe?
You don’t necessarily need set or formal qualifications to be a scribe, but certain skills are essential. These include:
- excellent time management
- attention to detail
- great listening and communication skills
- demonstrated writing skills, including accurate reports
- ability to meet tight deadlines
- strengths in establishing rapport with clients
- ability to triage priorities
- ability to work independently
- experience with Microsoft, including Word and basic Excel
- ability to learn eRecruit systems
- ability to use collaborative tools such as Microsoft Teams and Zoom.
In addition, great scribes are:
- reliable and respected
- flexible and focused
- committed and comprehensive
- thorough and trusted
- personable and professional.
What do scribes do?
Taking minutes for selection committee members is essential for scribes, but scribes can be called on for more. This makes scribing interesting and varied.
Depending on client needs, scribes may be called upon to handle:
- shortlisting candidates
- ranking candidates
- coordinating and scheduling interviews (with candidates and panel members)
- taking comprehensive, accurate notes
- using eRecruit systems
- advising clients to follow correct recruitment processes
Reports and interview attendance
- attending interviews
- writing individual assessment reports
- preparing comparative assessment reports
- serving as independent panel members
- preparing selection advisory committee reports
- preparing merit selection reports
- conducting reference checks and verifications
- providing candidates with feedback
- notifying unsuccessful candidates
- notifying candidates selected for merit lists
- facilitating assessment centres
- arranging or coordinating individual candidate assessments
What don’t scribes do?
It’s important to understand that scribes support recruitment. They’re not there to make recruitment decisions. This is the role of the selection committee.
Do scribes just work for government?
Many scribe assignments are for government, although more forward-thinking private sector and not-for-profit organisations are using scribes.
With government roles, scribes support organisations to apply the merit system principle when hiring. Because of this, scribes who have held government roles, or who are experienced with government scribing, are highly sought after. Having said scribes without government experience, who are fast learners with open minds, can quickly build knowledge of the APS and merit principles.
Can I handle all scribing work from home?
Most scribing work can be completed from home. While some clients may require a scribe onsite, most conduct interviews online, including through Microsoft Teams, WebEx, or Zoom.
What hours do scribes work?
Some scribes like to work regularly but only part-time. Others work intensely for several months and then take a chunk of time off. It’s flexible.
Scribe assignments for attending interviews are usually from Monday to Friday, between 8.30 to 5. You need to write a report after every interview, but can do so when and where you like, as long as deadlines are met.
Does face2face provide training and support?
face2face’s dedicated scribe team supports all scribes with their assignments. We offer:
- briefing before each assignment
- information and tools like reference material, templates, sample reports
- ongoing support
- competitive remuneration
- prompt payment each week.
How do scribes get paid?
As a scribe, you’re paid for the hours you work by the recruitment company enlisting your services. Rates vary depending on the assignment level and your experience but can be between $55 per hour up to $80 per hour. Payment of superannuation and taxes is a PAYG arrangement. Alternatively, if you have a company you can be paid through the company.
How do I get scribe work?
If you’re qualified and join face2face’s pool of scribes, we’ll source assignments that suit your preferences and manage the relationship between you and the client.
Want to become a face2face scribe?
Submit your CV to email@example.com
Or contact Marietta or Vicki on 02 6199 5750.
All discussions are confidential.