The majority of court reporters work in comfortable settings such as law offices and courtrooms when they are writing proceedings and perform their transcript production either at the offices of a court reporting firm or a home-based office.
While the occupation has few physical hazards, it does require long periods of concentration sitting in the same position writing shorthand or editing on a computer. This can cause mental and physical fatigue, and the nature of some proceedings may be disturbing to hear. Some court reporters experience wrist, back, neck, and eye strain, and there is a possibility of repetitive stress injuries. In addition, the pressure to write quickly and accurately and to produce transcripts within a relatively short period of time can also be stressful. It is not uncommon to work on transcript production during evenings and weekends.
Court reporters must have excellent listening skills and hearing. They must have an expert knowledge of medical and legal terminology, court procedures, extensive vocabulary, excellent grammar, and be aware of business and industry practices as well as current events to produce the correct spellings of the people, places, terminology, and events referred to during proceedings.
Court reporters are typically responsible to purchase and maintain their own shorthand and computer hardware and software.