German-English translation credentials
Thread poster: Chase Faucheux

Chase Faucheux  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 05:21
German to English
May 9

So I live in the US and I work in the language pair DE>EN. I’ve been applying to work with more agencies lately, and normally all they require is a CV and the completion of some sort of test.

I just applied with a Swiss agency, who wants copies of my Diplome, Arbeitszeugnisse, and Referenzen.

Diplome — I have my Diploma in Translation from the Institute of Linguists (2013), and I assume this is what they want to see. Are they also asking to see my MA in lingu
... See more
So I live in the US and I work in the language pair DE>EN. I’ve been applying to work with more agencies lately, and normally all they require is a CV and the completion of some sort of test.

I just applied with a Swiss agency, who wants copies of my Diplome, Arbeitszeugnisse, and Referenzen.

Diplome — I have my Diploma in Translation from the Institute of Linguists (2013), and I assume this is what they want to see. Are they also asking to see my MA in linguistics (2006)?

Arbeitszeugnisse — I have a pretty good idea of what these are within the DACH area, but a) I’m pretty sure there’s no equivalent in the US, and b) How is a freelancer supposed to have/get these?

Referenzen — Do they just want names and contacts of people I’ve worked for? If so, do I need their permission, or do I just write down the agencies I’ve worked for and their contact info? Is there are particular format to this, or is it literally just contacts?

Thanks in advance!
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Veronika Hoffmann
Germany
Local time: 12:21
English to German
Give them what you have May 10

Hi Chase,

I don't actually have experience with Swiss agencies, but assuming the process isn't different from any other job one might apply for, my advice would be:

  • Give them your diploma. If you're MA was good and you're pleased with it, they certainly won't mind if you attach that as well. Any official document pointing out how highly educated you are helps!
  • As far as I know, you usually only get an Arbeitszeugnis if you've worked as an employ... See more
Hi Chase,

I don't actually have experience with Swiss agencies, but assuming the process isn't different from any other job one might apply for, my advice would be:

  • Give them your diploma. If you're MA was good and you're pleased with it, they certainly won't mind if you attach that as well. Any official document pointing out how highly educated you are helps!
  • As far as I know, you usually only get an Arbeitszeugnis if you've worked as an employee or did an internship. If you don't have any because you've only ever worked freelance, you can just tell them that.
  • As for Referenzen, in my experience that's a particular contact they can call, so not just "Microsoft" but they'd want a specific person, their phone number, and I guess their job title would help, too. In other words, you'd have to ask your contact first if you can give their name and number as a reference since that is private information. As a freelancer, you probably don't have such references (usually a superior at a job who can attest to how diligent and knowledgeable you are), unless there's a PM at an agency you're particularly friendly with and you feel comfortable asking them. I imagine if you have a LinkedIn profile and you've asked people to sing your praises there, maybe you could point to that. I don't know of any particular formatting rules for contacts.

Hope that helps a bit.
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Teresa Borges
Portugal
Local time: 11:21
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
I have a different approach May 12

Diplomas: I don’t send my diplomas to prospective clients; if I have to trust them, they have to trust me also and my CV contains all the information needed, such as my personal details, my qualifications, my previous work history, skills and achievements.

Certificates of employment: I’m a freelancer, I’m not looking for an employment.

References: I have a couple of direct clients with whom I have been working for over 15 years and asking them for a reference was
... See more
Diplomas: I don’t send my diplomas to prospective clients; if I have to trust them, they have to trust me also and my CV contains all the information needed, such as my personal details, my qualifications, my previous work history, skills and achievements.

Certificates of employment: I’m a freelancer, I’m not looking for an employment.

References: I have a couple of direct clients with whom I have been working for over 15 years and asking them for a reference was no problem at all, but some customers may get annoyed with requests for references. In general, I just give my prospective clients a link to my WWA record.

N.B. I don’t work the same language combinations as you and I have 1 Swiss and 3 German customers (1 direct client, 3 translation agencies)
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German-English translation credentials

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