Discussion for Questions you have always wanted to ask one-day recruitment opportunities! session (2012): Translation Agency Interview

This discussion belongs to ProZ.com's Virtual Conferences » "Discussion for Questions you have always wanted to ask one-day recruitment opportunities! session (2012): Translation Agency Interview".
You can see the ProZ.com's virtual conferences page and participate in this discussion from there.


Katherine Schirmer-Tully  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 08:21
English to Portuguese
+ ...
How to stand out as a freelance translator when there are issues regarding the country/currency? Apr 24, 2012

I’m from Brazil, graduated in Journalism from a Brazilian university and I have been living and working in the UK since 2007.
Would you please advise me on how to stand out as a freelance translator English/Brazilian Portuguese? Please consider the following points:
-The competition for jobs/projects with translators based in Brazil is fierce (many clients/agencies only consider the translators who are currently based in Brazil).
-The rates in Britain are higher compared to the
... See more
I’m from Brazil, graduated in Journalism from a Brazilian university and I have been living and working in the UK since 2007.
Would you please advise me on how to stand out as a freelance translator English/Brazilian Portuguese? Please consider the following points:
-The competition for jobs/projects with translators based in Brazil is fierce (many clients/agencies only consider the translators who are currently based in Brazil).
-The rates in Britain are higher compared to the rates in Brazil because of the currency (1 British Pound = 3 Brazilian Real // 1 British Pound = 1.6 US Dollar).
Thank you very much in advance.
Collapse


 

Bryan Crumpler  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 02:21
Dutch to English
+ ...
3 to 8 cents per word? Wow... Apr 24, 2012

Holy cow.

They pay 4 to 6 (euro) cents a word in India!!!!

I started at 8 (euro) cents per word 10 years ago.

There has been 27% inflation since!

And they do Engineering, Medical and other Technical translation?

Wow... can't really believe my ears. And he speaks of reliability and availability? C'mon. What can one expect when the range of rates is rather pitiful? Ai ai ai.

Great session though. Good eye opener to the state of t
... See more
Holy cow.

They pay 4 to 6 (euro) cents a word in India!!!!

I started at 8 (euro) cents per word 10 years ago.

There has been 27% inflation since!

And they do Engineering, Medical and other Technical translation?

Wow... can't really believe my ears. And he speaks of reliability and availability? C'mon. What can one expect when the range of rates is rather pitiful? Ai ai ai.

Great session though. Good eye opener to the state of the market.

[Edited at 2012-04-24 16:29 GMT]
Collapse


 

Isabelle F. BRUCHER (X)  Identity Verified
Belgium
Local time: 08:21
English to French
+ ...
3 to 8 cents per word? Wow... Apr 24, 2012

Bryan Crumpler wrote:

Holy cow.

They pay 4 to 6 (euro) cents a word in India!!!!

I started at 8 (euro) cents per word 10 years ago.

There has been 27% inflation since!

And they do Engineering, Medical and other Technical translation?

Wow... can't really believe my ears. And he speaks of reliability and availability? C'mon. What can one expect when the range of rates is rather pitiful? Ai ai ai.

Great session though. Good eye opener to the state of the market.

[Edited at 2012-04-24 16:29 GMT]


I have stopped working for British agencies. They are not the best intermediaries a translator can use to get him/herself money.


 

jferedo  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:21
Hungarian to English
+ ...
How true Apr 25, 2012

I totally agree with Bryan. Rates have been going down for years and years. The present situation, I believe, is caused by the widespread of the Internet, when anyone can present him/herself as a professional translator. Students flooded the market with offering generally very poor services for peanuts. I used to receive translations to proofread - some of them entire useless. Money is always the first question asked by agencies who look for freelancers. Motto: you pay peanuts you'll get a monke... See more
I totally agree with Bryan. Rates have been going down for years and years. The present situation, I believe, is caused by the widespread of the Internet, when anyone can present him/herself as a professional translator. Students flooded the market with offering generally very poor services for peanuts. I used to receive translations to proofread - some of them entire useless. Money is always the first question asked by agencies who look for freelancers. Motto: you pay peanuts you'll get a monkey.Collapse


 

Natalia Pedrosa  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 08:21
English to Spanish
+ ...
Bryan Apr 25, 2012

[quote]Bryan Crumpler wrote:

Holy cow.

They pay 4 to 6 (euro) cents a word in India!!!!

This would be wonderland. I have been working for Indian companies (not anymore, for sure), and they pay from $0.02 to $0.05.

Natalia


 

Edward Vreeburg  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 08:21
Member (2008)
English to Dutch
+ ...
very valid points made in this session I gues Apr 25, 2012

Apart from the shocking rates (or maybe it's an eye opener?) I think some very valid points where made

- - you cannot be a generalist and know everything about anything - so clearly stating your experience and fields of expertise will help
- - make sure you are available in the agency's hour of need and supply great translations
- - asking questions when you're not sure about the source language (although in my experience many agencies simply forward those questions to th
... See more
Apart from the shocking rates (or maybe it's an eye opener?) I think some very valid points where made

- - you cannot be a generalist and know everything about anything - so clearly stating your experience and fields of expertise will help
- - make sure you are available in the agency's hour of need and supply great translations
- - asking questions when you're not sure about the source language (although in my experience many agencies simply forward those questions to the client, if they are not too embarrassed about not knowing themselves)
- - having a professional attitude, delivering on time and using professional software to ensure consistency could make all the difference

And this one is not clearly stated as such, but a little bit in between the lines:
- - With the right tools you can still scrape together a decent living as long as your rates are low enough / would you rather be working at a lower rate or not work at all?


So are we saying the market is dictating us to work faster, using new tools and online resources to go from 2000 / words a day to 4000-5000 words a day (and maybe not spending much attention to quality), or is there something wrong with agencies who are simply bending over backwards to keep their clients? Or is there something wrong with the clients who have lost their contacts with translators (globalisation, more languages needed, higher volumes) and contacted LSP's (yuk) (Language Service Providers) who promise them the moon at a reasonable price...and no longer have any idea how much effort it takes a single translator to translate their document and have no other concerns except for pricing?. (i.e. 1 translator takes a 1 week to translate a 10.000 word document for say 1000 euro, while 5 translators take 1 day to translate a 10.000 word document and it only costs 600-800 euro - - which would you choose?)

Maybe we don't actually have a problem with too many translators worldwide (especially in more exotic languages), but we have too many agencies...
- Are we supporting a war between agencies giving them the ammunition (accepting lower rates) to compete with each other? If some of those intermediate agencies (or even some big LSP's) went out of business - - would other agencies have to contact us directly, thus paying us the rates they would normally pay those intermediaries...

But then again the Moderator himself said his personal rates where much much higher... so there is hope for us still!
Collapse


 


To report site rules violations or get help, contact a site moderator:

Moderator(s) of this forum
Drew MacFadyen[Call to this topic]

You can also contact site staff by submitting a support request »

Discussion for Questions you have always wanted to ask one-day recruitment opportunities! session (2012): Translation Agency Interview

Advanced search






WordFinder Unlimited
For clarity and excellence

WordFinder is the leading dictionary service that gives you the words you want anywhere, anytime. Access 260+ dictionaries from the world's leading dictionary publishers in virtually any device. Find the right word anywhere, anytime - online or offline.

More info »
Déjà Vu X3
Try it, Love it

Find out why Déjà Vu is today the most flexible, customizable and user-friendly tool on the market. See the brand new features in action: *Completely redesigned user interface *Live Preview *Inline spell checking *Inline

More info »



Forums
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs
  • Forums
  • Multiple search