Typing can be a valuable skill although these days a much higher percentage of the population type well compared to 30 years ago. We have the computer to thank for that. Most people learn typing in school at some point.
I learned typing in high school. I type 60 words per minute. I’m pretty sure I’d qualify for most jobs that require keyboarding skills.
Fortunately for you outstanding typists, there are quite a few jobs that rely on being able to type well. Some are straight-up typing (data entry/transcription) while other jobs include other skills and tasks.
Here’s a list of jobs that use keyboarding skills. Note that most of the jobs we list involved regular typing (words mostly) but some rely on numbers and in the case of coding, all keyword characters.
*Please note that while I include salary/earning info below, it’s very, very general. As with most jobs, the amount it pays can vary wildly depending on many factors including geographic area, employer, additional skills required and more.
Pure Typing Jobs
One “pure-typing” job (aka touch-typing) is data entry. It’s usually numerical but can involve the alphabet as well depending on the data being entered.
You may enter data provided to you as printed documents, digital documents or audio.
Pay: $15.35 per hour*.
Another “pure-typing” job is transcribing audio. The faster you can type, the better. It’s a great job for those few typists who clock in above 100 wpm.
There are online transcription services that hire transcriptionists globally or you can join a local company that has a typing pool such as a large law firm or accounting firm.
Pay: $16.79 per hour*.
Another classic typing job/career is secretary, receptionist and/or assistant. In some cases, the titles are interchangeable. All three require the ability to type at least 60 wpm as it requires typing all kinds of correspondence, whether email, snail male or other.
Some of these positions require a diploma or certificate such as legal or medical while generalist positions may not. Legal and medical receptionists/assistants can earn more due to the more technical nature of the position. Much of the typing work is specific to the profession.
Some firms have what they call “typing pools” which is a pure-typing word precessing position that types out documents and correspondence generated by the other staff during the day. Some typing pools work at night/graveyard shift so that the work is ready the following worday.
- Receptionist: $13.59 per hour*
- Secretary: $14.19 per hour*
- Administrative assistant (general): $13.35 Per hour*
- Legal assistant: $16.83 per hour*
- Medical assistant: $16.09 per hour*
Closed-captioning typists is similar to transcriptionists in that the position requires typing out text from audio.
Mot movies and TV shows offer captions which means someone needs to type out the captions from the dialogue.
Pay: $30,000 to $65,000 per year [SmallRevolution.com].
Customer support – email & live chat
Many companies offer email support. Some offer live chat support. Regardless which type of customer support agent you are, you must be able to type reasonably fast.
In most cases, you’ll undergo training to learn about the service/software/product/company that you provide support for. Once done, you will spend your days or nights responding to customer inquiries in the form of typed responses.
Pay: $14.87 per hour*
Typing Jobs Requiring Additional Skillsets
If you have additional skills, you can command more pay. The following are jobs that require typing but also an additional skillset.
With the Web’s insatiable appetite for content and as a website publisher, I can tell you there are many freelance and in-house writing jobs available these days. Way more than when print was the only publication option. The downside is that many Web writing jobs, unless specialist, don’t pay a ton of money. Some do and if you’re good, you can command some great freelancer rates, but if you’re not exceptional, you’ll have to settle for less.
Some freelance writers earn six figures. Most who work full time earn $40K to $75K per year which is still pretty good given the flexibility and “work anywhere” perks. That said, many don’t include benefits given it’s often contract work.
There are many types of writers for the Web today. Here’s a list of the most common:
- Article/blog post writer
- Social media writer
- Ebook writer
- White paper/report writer
The above types of writing are in big demand. If you’re very skilled at any of them, you can build up a clientele and command very good rates.
Writing pays by the word, flat-rate, hourly or if in-house, you may be paid a salary.
Pay: $26.38 per hour*. If per word, $.03 to $2.00+ per word. Huge range.
Court reporters must learn shorthand. It requires schooling. Once done, the job pays reasonably well and given it’s usually a government position, there are many benefits included.
Pay: $35,966 per year*.
Coders are in huge demand. Obviously, you need to know how to code at least one computer language. There are many but if you’re good, you can land a very good paying job (for most of them). The more advanced the code, the better the pay (usually). Some of these jobs require a computer science degree or even graduate degrees in computer science, math or other.
Coder jobs span all kinds of work including website developer, freelancer, cloud computing and software development.
You can also take your coding skills to start your own company whether it’s as a freelancer-for-hire, starting a web design agency or creating and selling software.
- Coder: $20.59 per hour*
- Computer Programmer: $47,775 per year*
- Web developer: $73,410 per year*
- Software engineer: $105,122 per year*
If you are fluent in a language other than English, you can earn a decent living translating the written word into English or into your other language.
Pay: $45,695 per year*
Copywriting is a highly valuable skill and can earn 6 figures easily and even 7 figures.
If you work in-house you won’t hit the big money. Examples of such writing could be writing product descriptions. It’s nuts and bolts copywriting.
If you can write sales copy (ads, sales letters/web pages, email copy) that sell well, you can command piles and piles of money, especially as a freelancer. Some include a percentage of sales as part of their fee which can escalate earnings into the millions.
It takes quite a bit of practice and some natural talent to write sales copy well. Not everyone can do it but if you find you enjoy it and have a knack for it, you can earn a terrific living. Your best bet would to eventually work for yourself if you’re good.
Pay: $55,218 per year*
Grant writing is technical and very detail-oriented. You must carefully follow the directions stipulated by the grant application process.
If you’re good at this type of writing, you can earn a decent living. Being able to successfully acquire 5, 6 and 7 figure grants is a very valuable skill.
Pay: $51,752 per year*
Most graphic design doesn’t require much typing, but some of it does and so it’s including. Some graphic design revolves around text and overall it helps to have a good command of the keyboard.
Pay: $18.38 per year*
Where to find typing jobs
There are many avenues for landing the various typing jobs above. They include:
Craigslist is still a great place to look for jobs in your area. You can also find remote jobs on Craigslist.
Other job websites such as Indeed
These job sites are great because they’re free for the job seeker. Many employers post jobs on sites like Indeed so it’s definitely a good place to take a look.
Help wanted classifieds
Local newspapers are still printed and distributed but also offer online versions both of which often have a classified ads section with a help-wanted area for job-seekers.
Freelance websites such as Upwork, Freelancer and Problogger Job Board.
If you like the idea of freelancing your typing skills, global freelancing sites such as Upwork, Freelancer and Problogger Job Board are outstanding. There are other options as well so be sure to search high and low.
Online writing agencies such as WriterAccess, Textbroker and many, many more.
If you’re a Web writer, you can join many writing agency platforms where you can pick up writing gigs from publishers and other entities requiring all kinds of writing.
Benefits of typing jobs
Typing jobs are generally pretty comfortable. You get to sit inside. In other words, you’re not out in the elements and there are no physical demands on you. For some people, this is a terrible type of job… those who love moving around and doing things. For other folks, sitting at a computer is idea. If you prefer working at a computer in a temperature-controlled environment, you’re suited for a typing job.
Many typing jobs can be done remotely and will remain remote. Most freelance work is remote.
However, many aren’t and require going to an office. Receptionists/assistants usually need to fill a seat in an office.
Can pay reasonably well
The range in pay for jobs that rely on being able to type range considerably. Some pay minimum wage such as a basic data-entry or general receptionist while some pay a generous salary (skilled veteran legal assistant can earn $50K or more).
Skilled writers and coders can earn much more – well into six figures.
But for the most part, jobs that are mostly typing, don’t pay a whole lot.
Low barrier to entry (no college degree necessarily needed)
If you can type 60 wpm or faster, there’s work for you. It may take time to find it but you do have an employable skill. It has a very low barrier to entry.
The fact that these jobs have a low barrier to entry is the primary reason they don’t pay well. Most people can type reasonably fast so are qualified for such jobs.
Threats to typing jobs
Most jobs have threats to their future as a viable job. Typing jobs are no exception. Consider the following:
Artificial Intelligence (AI): AI is making progress by leaps and bounds. It’s seemingly exponential. It’s not inconceivable that many typing jobs such as data entry and transcription will be handled entirely by computers. As sensors and speech to text capabilities improve, it could threaten many typing jobs.
Global competition: More and more companies are outsourcing typing work to the third world which eliminates jobs in the origin country. The main reason for doing this is to save money. Salaries/remuneration is much lower for typing positions in India and the Philippines than paying someone in the USA, UK, or Canada.
How to learn to type to get a job
Some typing jobs require that you obtain some level of certificate or diploma from a local college. For example, you can get a legal assistant diploma.
If no such education is needed and all that is required is an ability to type, you can enroll in local typing classes or learn yourself from any number of typing tutor software programs.
*Average remuneration courtesy of Indeed.com.
What typing speed is needed in order to get a typing job?
It depends on the nature of the job but a pure typing job such as data entry or transcription will require at leat 65 wpm. Faster is better. Given there are so many people who can type reasonably well, if you can clock 90+, you stand a better chance at landing a job.
What is touch-typing?
Touch-typing is being able to type with all fingers without looking at the keyboard. If you’re a hunt and peck typer, a typing job is not for you.