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Poll: Which is the ideal project size?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff

ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 19:51
SITE STAFF
Apr 22, 2016

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "Which is the ideal project size?".

This poll was originally submitted by Marinus Vesseur. View the poll results »



 

Teresa Borges
Portugal
Local time: 03:51
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
It depends Apr 22, 2016

I’d say whatever my customer needs and is willing to pay for. My preference goes to medium size (10,000-15,000 words), but now and then I like having a big project with a comfortable deadline and several small ones in between. Less than 3,000 words is not my cup of tea, but I do a lot of these for one of my long-standing clients…

 

neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 04:51
Spanish to English
+ ...
Depends Apr 22, 2016

I actually chose 1000-4000, but that's just because I never know when 2, 3 or more clients are going to appear at the same time, usually all with some degree of urgency. I don't really mind how long a text is from a translation point of view, but if I have to provide service to half a dozen clients any given time, it's better if none of them appears with 10K, 20K or 30K word rush jobs.

PS: Aaargh! Speak of the devil. My best client turned up with an 18K project today. I'm already fu
... See more
I actually chose 1000-4000, but that's just because I never know when 2, 3 or more clients are going to appear at the same time, usually all with some degree of urgency. I don't really mind how long a text is from a translation point of view, but if I have to provide service to half a dozen clients any given time, it's better if none of them appears with 10K, 20K or 30K word rush jobs.

PS: Aaargh! Speak of the devil. My best client turned up with an 18K project today. I'm already fully booked for the next week or so, and it took me 3 emails to explain to them why I won't be able to deliver the goods as quickly as usual. If it had been 4 or 5K, I'd have been able to find space for it, as I am so familiar with the material l can do their texts reasonably quickly, but the stuff I'm translating for universities this week is much more complicated and time-consuming, so I gave them a deadline of 2-3 weeks. They were not amused....

[Edited at 2016-04-22 20:08 GMT]
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Armorel Young  Identity Verified
Local time: 03:51
German to English
A mixture Apr 22, 2016

I like to have a biggish project on the go that ensures a steady workflow with smaller things popping up along the way to provide interest and variety.

 

Thayenga  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 04:51
Member (2009)
English to German
+ ...
It depends Apr 22, 2016

I picked between 1,000 - 4,000 words, but the preferred project size also depends on my availability and on the field. Sometimes a 300 word project can take twice as long as one with 4,000 words.

 

Mario Freitas  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 00:51
Member (2014)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Amazing! Apr 22, 2016

Quick poll questions are quite amazing sometimes.
What's the ideal project size? Ideal for what? For whom? Under what circumstances?
If you have two days to complete it, the ideal size is from 4 to 5 k words. If you have a year to do it, it's 1 million words.
If it's a good quality original text, in an area you are well acquainted with, great. If it's a Chinglish text in physics or medicine, the ideal size is ZERO.
If the client is paying a good price and you know the
... See more
Quick poll questions are quite amazing sometimes.
What's the ideal project size? Ideal for what? For whom? Under what circumstances?
If you have two days to complete it, the ideal size is from 4 to 5 k words. If you have a year to do it, it's 1 million words.
If it's a good quality original text, in an area you are well acquainted with, great. If it's a Chinglish text in physics or medicine, the ideal size is ZERO.
If the client is paying a good price and you know them well, great. If they want to pay peanuts, ZERO again.

[Edited at 2016-04-22 10:01 GMT]
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Yetta Jensen Bogarde  Identity Verified
Denmark
Local time: 04:51
Member (2012)
English to Danish
+ ...
I checked 1000 to 4000 words Apr 22, 2016

But I don't mind up to 9000w as long as the deadline is reasonable

However, a bigger issue is payment terms and I give priority to the clients who pay within net 30.

[Edited at 2016-04-22 13:04 GMT]


 

Julian Holmes  Identity Verified
Japan
Local time: 12:51
Member (2011)
Japanese to English
Other N/A Apr 22, 2016

As a J>E translator, I work in source characters and this is how jobs are gauged over here.

120,000 source upwards has a nice ring or kaching! to it since this generally works out to a million yen.


 

Philippe Etienne  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 04:51
Member
English to French
I chose 9,000-14,000 Apr 22, 2016

One week on the same subject, enough to get deep enough into the matter, but not enough to get bored stiff. This may be the ideal size for me.
However, I'd take on a nice interesting 50k+ project anytime. I translated a job of 80k some years ago and never felt bored, so it very much depends on the area.

Back to reality, my average job last FY was 1,300 words ([turnover/number of jobs]/word rate).

Philippe


 

Miroslav Jeftic  Identity Verified
Local time: 04:51
Member (2009)
English to Serbian
+ ...
Yup Apr 22, 2016

Mario Freitas wrote:

Quick poll questions are quite amazing sometimes.
What's the ideal project size? Ideal for what? For whom? Under what circumstances?
If you have two days to complete it, the ideal size is from 4 to 5 k words. If you have a year to do it, it's 1 million words.
If it's a good quality original text, in an area you are well acquainted with, great. If it's a Chinglish text in physics or medicine, the ideal size is ZERO.
If the client is paying a good price and you know them well, great. If they want to pay peanuts, ZERO again.

[Edited at 2016-04-22 10:01 GMT]


This, pretty much.


 

nathalia woglo  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 00:51
Portuguese to English
+ ...
My thoughts exactly! Apr 22, 2016

Mario Freitas wrote:

Quick poll questions are quite amazing sometimes.
What's the ideal project size? Ideal for what? For whom? Under what circumstances?
If you have two days to complete it, the ideal size is from 4 to 5 k words. If you have a year to do it, it's 1 million words.
If it's a good quality original text, in an area you are well acquainted with, great. If it's a Chinglish text in physics or medicine, the ideal size is ZERO.
If the client is paying a good price and you know them well, great. If they want to pay peanuts, ZERO again.

[Edited at 2016-04-22 10:01 GMT]


 

Helen Hagon  Identity Verified
Local time: 03:51
Member (2011)
Russian to English
+ ...
Big is best Apr 22, 2016

As long as it is interesting and worthwhile, of course. I like the security of knowing that I have plenty of work to keep me going for a while, and less juggling different customers and projects. I also enjoy being able to delve deep into the text and the subject matter. Books are my preference, but any kind of large document or series of texts is also great, if it falls within my range of expertise and the customer is pleasant to work with.

 

Gianluca Marras  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 04:51
English to Italian
9000-14000 Apr 22, 2016

In my case, most of the times, the longer it is the more repetitions you find (and in most cases I get paid 100% without discount for repetitions, fuzzy and so on...)
At the same time it is a size I can manage in a relatively short time (if the rule above applies)...


 

Tina Vonhof
Canada
Local time: 20:51
Member (2006)
Dutch to English
+ ...
It depends Apr 22, 2016

Any project can be ideal as long as you can complete it within the given deadline and not be stressed out.

 

Hussein Dayow Idow  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 22:51
Member (2016)
Somali to English
+ ...
Big is the Best but if with enough time to complete. Apr 22, 2016

I believed big or smaller is not a matter. the matter is the time to complete the project. The ideal project it one that has enough time that you can complete with the task.

 
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