Need help coming up with a quote (new translator)
Thread poster: Jonathan Smith
Jonathan Smith  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 08:59
German to English
Feb 13, 2007

Good day, everyone!

I have received a local project offer for a 165-page document of 50,000 words. My work up to this point has been short documents (news releases, etc.), and I charge a fairly low per word rate.

The person offering the project would like a quote, and so I'm wondering if someone might help me. Do you have any suggestions or any advice from your experience, what you might do in this situation, etc. I'd like to know what more experienced translators have to say with regard to hours and charges, etc.

Any help you could offer would be greatly appreciated! Thanks for looking.

Jonathan Smith.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Siegfried Armbruster  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 14:59
Member (2004)
English to German
+ ...
Raise your rate, multiply by word count Feb 13, 2007

It is relatively easy, raise your rate (what about 0.15 instead of 0.12) and multiply it with 50,000.

Thats about it. Don't lower your rate!

Siegfried


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Wenjer Leuschel  Identity Verified
Taiwan
Local time: 20:59
English to Chinese
+ ...
Volume discounts in translation don't make sense. Feb 13, 2007

Siegfried Armbruster wrote:

It is relatively easy, raise your rate (what about 0.15 instead of 0.12) and multiply it with 50,000.

Thats about it. Don't lower your rate!

Siegfried


Right, don't lower your rate.

Remember that there is a timeframe. If it is tight, say less than 42 days, you would need help from colleagues for translating, proofreading and editing to catch up the deadline and ensure the quality. That would cost you more than doing short documents on your own. Solely for that reason, you should not lower your rate.

Even if they let you plenty of time to do the whole job on your own, don't lower your rate. As one colleague puts it: "Translation is not scalable. Volume discounts in translation don't make sense." (Per N. Döhler)

- Wenjer


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Claudia Krysztofiak  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 14:59
English to German
+ ...
Break it down Feb 13, 2007

If you are asked to quote on a large project and you have no experience with projects of this size it is always helpful to break the project down into more palatable pieces.

You should have some idea of how many words you can translate in one day, so you could break down 50.000 words into the number of days you have to work on them. Include some time for preparations, terminology work, editing and proofreading.

Then you know approximately how long it will take you.
And then you can check what money you wish to earn in that time to make it worth your effort. You have to live and pay bills etc. and some translators even wish to have some fun from time to time, so they have to have exceptionally high rates ...

This way you can find out, what rate you can afford. And then you can decide whether you really wish to get the job and offer for a relatively low rate, e.g. if you wish to name it as a reference in the future or just gain experience with larger projects. But you should calculate a healthy minimum, which still enables you to live. No job is worth going lower than that!

On the other hand you could decide to quote higher to leave some room for negotiating or just because you have enough work anyway.

A day-based calculation can also help you manage larger projects . You can set daily goals and thus always know if you are still on schedule. This is how I do it with books, for example.

Good luck and have fun!


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Ralf Lemster  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 14:59
English to German
+ ...
Moving the thread... Feb 13, 2007

...to the 'Getting Established' forum.
Please use this forum for postings in German only - thanks!

Best regards,
Ralf


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Daniel Bird  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 13:59
German to English
Be realistic... Feb 13, 2007

...especially about the timeframe. A project schedule that might seem generous can soon be eaten into by the unexpected. Never underestimate the ugly factor.
As for rates, suggest keeping them at your maximum and hold your nerve.
Good luck.
DB


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Buck
Netherlands
Local time: 14:59
Dutch to English
Translation is not scalable Feb 18, 2007

I agree. Do you think, say, a lawyer, would lower his fee just because someone was giving him a lot of work? I always think its funny when someone asks for a discount simply because they are offering a big job. Unfortunately, it is common in the Netherlands.

[Edited at 2007-02-18 15:22]


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Jonathan Smith  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 08:59
German to English
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks for the help, folks! Feb 18, 2007

Hello again everyone,

Thanks so much for your replies, they are much appreciated. I will offer the potential client a quote with my usual rate -- if I get it, good, and if I don't, then that's good, too.

It's interesting how people are often a little shocked by the price of larger translations, at least when they don't really understand the specialized nature of the work involved.

Take care, everyone.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Adi Al-Ka'bi
Local time: 16:59
Arabic to English
+ ...
Large jobs, discounts etc Feb 24, 2007

There are a few points about large translations on http://portreference.com/000001-Pricing.htm . It's from how I dealt with a 75,000 word job once.

In short I left it to the client to decide how many portions he'd want the job done in and asked him to pay for each in advance. I suggested around 10 portions. He paid 50% for the first in advance 40% for the second part in advance. The final payment was when I finished, since the source was actual booklets and not by email or Word format or some way that the words could be pre-calculated.

There's more in that article about how to give discounts without really giving discounts. In saying that, I think you already got the idea


Direct link Reply with quote
 


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


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

Need help coming up with a quote (new translator)

Advanced search







WordFinder
The words you want Anywhere, Anytime

WordFinder is the market's fastest and easiest way of finding the right word, term, translation or synonym in one or more dictionaries. In our assortment you can choose among more than 120 dictionaries in 15 languages from leading publishers.

More info »
SDL MultiTerm 2017
Guarantee a unified, consistent and high-quality translation with terminology software by the industry leaders.

SDL MultiTerm 2017 allows translators to create one central location to store and manage multilingual terminology, and with SDL MultiTerm Extract 2017 you can automatically create term lists from your existing documentation to save time.

More info »



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