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The Easiest Way to Transcribe and Record Zoom Meetings: Step-by-Step Guide

Published
November 24, 2023
Read time
6
Min Read
Last updated
March 21, 2024
Jenna Pitkälä
The Easiest Way to Transcribe and Record Zoom Meetings: Step-by-Step Guide
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Frustrated with not being able to easily create transcription for Zoom meetings?

Look no further, we're here to give you a much faster way to do this.

Note, we're NOT talking about live transcription/captions but a transcript of the whole conversation that you can read and use after the virtual meeting.

Whether you're recording a podcast alone or having a meeting with other people, stay tuned for...

  • The Easiest Way to Transcribe Zoom
  • Zoom's Transcription Tool
  • Wudpecker vs Zoom Transcription: Side-by-Side Comparison

The Easiest Way to Transcribe Zoom

1. Set up a Zoom meeting on your Google or Microsoft calendar.

  1. Log into your zoom account.
  2. Schedule a new meeting in your Zoom app by clicking on "Schedule".
  3. Set the date, time, and other preferences. You can also add participants and choose which of your calendars to sync the meeting with. You might be directed to give Zoom permission to view and edit events on your calendar. Accept this request.
  4. Click "Save". Zoom will generate a meeting link.
  5. In the Zoom app, go to "Meetings".
  6. Click "Copy Invitation" to share this link directly in your email or "Edit" to change calendar sync, settings or participants.
  7. Further information here if you're using Zoom on a browser instead.

2. Sign in to Wudpecker by clicking "Get started"

Wudpecker's home page with an arrow pointing to the "Get started" button

3. Continue either by connecting a Google or Microsoft account to Wudpecker.

Wudpecker's signup page with buttons to either continue with Google or Microsoft.

After this, accept the permission for Wudpecker to access your calendar (this is for the purpose of automatically joining calls for a more seamless experience).

4. Make sure the meeting you want to transcribe shows up in "Upcoming calls" and that there's an activated toggle button next to it.

Screenshot of Wudpecker's browser app's home page, most visible content being Upcoming calls.
You can choose which meetings Wudpecker will try to join with a press of a toggle button. If it can't detect a meeting link in an event, no toggle button shows up.

If this is not the case...

  • Make sure you signed up with the correct account. The items on the menu are all the events in your calendar connected to the account you signed up with.
  • Check that the meeting event you have in your calendar has a meeting link. (Psst: The meeting link needs to be in the "location" of the event)
  • Try clicking on the toggle button to activate it (it should be activated/colored automatically).
  • If none of this helps, you can always contact us by pressing the chat button on the right bottom corner.

Easy peasy! Once you've signed up and made sure your calendar meetings are set up correctly, everything is automated from now on. For any future meetings, just admit the notetaker in each time, and you'll be all set!

5. Once you're in the meeting, allow Wudpecker's Notetaker to join by clicking "Admit".

Screenshot of a Google Meet notification of Wudpecker's notetaker trying to join a Zoom call
Wudpecker's Notetaker icon in the meeting
The Notetaker looks like any of the other meeting participants. With a Pro account, you can change the Notetaker's name in the call.

6. Soon after the meeting has ended, you'll see notes and a transcript for your meeting in "My Calls".

Screenshot of Wudpecker app menu showing "My Calls", "Upcoming calls", "Invite notetaker".
Wudpecker transcription
Visual example of what Wudpecker's audio transcript looks like. You can press on any part of the conversation and it will be matched with the exact timestamp on the recorder which you can also listen to.

Zoom's Transcription Tool

Zoom has made it quite complicated to transcribe meetings, as you might have noticed if you've tried to enable it. Below, we have attempted to explain this process as clearly as possible. If the guidance doesn't fix your problem, you can always read Zoom's official guide here.

Check Your Account Type: First, ensure you have the right key to this maze. Zoom's transcription feature is exclusive to Pro, Business, Education, or Enterprise accounts. If you're on a free plan, this path is unfortunately closed.

Admin Rights Are Crucial: This journey requires admin or account owner privileges. If you're not the one holding the map (admin rights), you'll need to collaborate with the zoom account owner.

Step 1: Enable Cloud Recording

  • Log into your Zoom admin account, but make sure you're using the web portal, as these settings are not accessible via the app.
  • Head to 'Settings' from the main menu on the left and click on the 'Recording' tab.
  • Enable 'Cloud Recording' from the toggle button so that it becomes blue. This might not be possible and you might see a message like 'Locked by admin'. In this case, you need to contact the account owner or create your own account (read the list of acceptable accounts above) and become the admin. If this works, Zoom should automatically save the changes.
  • In the advanced cloud recording settings, tick the 'Create audio transcript' box and hit 'Save' to confirm.

Note: Zoom can only transcribe meetings saved on the cloud, not locally recorded meetings saved on your device.

Step 2: Download Your Meeting Transcript

  • Again using the web portal, navigate to 'Recordings' in your Zoom account menu.
  • A list of your recorded meetings saved on the cloud will be displayed.
  • Select the meeting you want transcribed.
  • The cloud recording will include video, audio recordings, and 'Close Captions', which are essentially the transcripts.
  • Click on the download button to get your transcript in VTT format.

Wudpecker vs Zoom Transcription: Side-by-Side Comparison

When it comes to transcribing your Zoom meetings, the choice between Wudpecker and Zoom Transcription can significantly impact your experience. Let's break down the differences in a clear, side-by-side comparison to help you make an informed decision.

Table comparing transcription features of Wudpecker and Zoom.

Conclusion

In this blog, we've navigated through the steps of transcribing Zoom meetings, both through Zoom's own tool and the user-friendly alternative, Wudpecker.

Consider your needs, assess the options, and choose the transcription method that best suits your requirements for seamless virtual communication.

FAQs

Can you do transcription on Zoom?

Yes, Zoom offers transcription features. For cloud recordings, Zoom can automatically transcribe the audio of a meeting or webinar that you record to the cloud.

Additionally, Zoom provides live transcription (closed captioning) during meetings, which can be enabled by the host. Similarly, Wudpecker offers an easy setup for transcribing your Zoom meetings, providing a hassle-free alternative.

Is Zoom transcription free?

For closed captioning, yes. For cloud transcripts, no. However, Wudpecker is an easy, free alternative to create an audio transcript which becomes available right after the meeting.

How do I turn on transcribe in Zoom?

To turn on live transcription in a Zoom meeting:

  1. Start your Zoom meeting as the host.
  2. Click on the "Closed Caption" or "Live Transcript" button in the meeting controls.
  3. Choose "Enable Auto-Transcription" to start the live transcription.

For cloud recordings:

  1. Ensure that you have a paid Zoom subscription with cloud recording.
  2. Go to Zoom's settings and enable the audio transcription option for cloud recordings.
  3. Start your meeting and record it to the cloud. The transcription will be automatically generated after the meeting.

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The Easiest Way to Transcribe and Record Zoom Meetings: Step-by-Step Guide
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The Easiest Way to Transcribe and Record Zoom Meetings: Step-by-Step Guide
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