Mobile menu

Pages in topic:   [1 2] >
Hardly any reactions to applications
Thread poster: Julia Glasmann

Julia Glasmann
Germany
Member (2006)
English to German
+ ...
Mar 28, 2007

Hello everyone!

I am rather new to the translation business (I only finished university last year) and - quite naturally - struggling for jobs.

Even though I have applied to numerous job offers I haven't got a single job via proz.com so far. As I am competing with a lot of very experienced translators here, I am not too worried about that.

What I am concered about is, that I hardly got any reactions at all, only two or three people had the courtesy to write back (and I think a kind "no" is still better than no reaction). - Is that normal or could it be that it has got something to do with my applications? Do you maybe have any tipps of how to write an application that a potential client might take into consideration even though I am a newbie?

I appreciate any comments on this topic, thank you in advance,
Julia


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Kathryn Strachecky  Identity Verified
Local time: 23:23
French to English
Normal I'm afraid Mar 28, 2007

Hi Julia,

I'm afraid that no reply does seem to be the normal response, as much for ProZ jobs as for just about any job. Although this may seem rude and terribly disappointing for you, those offering the jobs get sent many CVs and it would take them a long time to answer everybody.

I know, it's not an excuse, but life is like that.

However, many people and agencies do seem to keep hold of the CVs they receive. I've been contacted months or even years after having sent out CVs. So don't despair. It is hard breaking in to the translation business, but take heart, it will pay off eventually!

Keep sending out those CVs and applying for jobs!


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Mulyadi Subali  Identity Verified
Indonesia
Local time: 04:23
English to Indonesian
+ ...
persistence and updated profile Mar 28, 2007

my suggestion for you is to be patient and persistent in contacting the clients/agencies. in the meantime, you should update your profile, at least in all the suggested areas. you can also read articles, such as this: http://www.proz.com/translation-articles/articles/98/1/How-to-improve-your-listing-in-the-freelancer-directory

[Edited at 2007-03-28 14:55]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

erika rubinstein  Identity Verified
Local time: 23:23
Member (2011)
English to Russian
+ ...
As a rule, if you post a job, Mar 28, 2007

you can get up to 100 offers. So it is hardly possible to answer to everyone.

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Manuela Junghans  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 22:23
Member (2004)
English to German
+ ...
Hi Julia Mar 28, 2007

I can second most of what Kathryn has said already. It also happened to me that someone contacted my months after I´d initially sent my CV. In most cases I´d already forgotten about it...

Additionally I might suggest two things to you. I had a quick glance at your profile and found it to be rather empty. You might consider adding some more information to it, e.g. your education, experience you might have already, some personal things about you, the areas you specialize in....
Furthermore, unless you are virtually bilingual, I would not put in your profile that you also translate into English. Unless you really can´t avoid it you should concentrate on translating into your mother tongue only.

Regards,
Manuela


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Jan Sundström  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 23:23
English to Swedish
+ ...
Don't rely on Proz only Mar 28, 2007

Hi Julia and all,

Don't rely on the public jobs posted on Proz only. The bulk of them are only looking for the cheapest translator, not the most hard working or ambitious (although there are exceptions).

You have to do some footwork yourself. Get a list of "brick and mortar" agencies in the GAS countries, maybe by looking at the Proz Blue Board list here too.

Dedicate one or two days to actually call them and speak in person with guy/girl in charge for freelance applications.

Once you've established all those contacts, send out your CV, and follow up with one more phone call.

In the process you will also learn a lot about what's in demand, which word price you can expect, what software you could benefit from.

Good luck!

/Jan

[Edited at 2007-03-28 15:14]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Julia Glasmann
Germany
Member (2006)
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you Mar 28, 2007

Thanks for all reactions.

It is encouraging to here, that my problems are quite common for a newbie, so I'll just take your advice and keep on trying.

[Manuela] Thanks also for the tipp of reworking my profile, I am at it!

[Jan] Of course I don't only try to apply via proz.com but so far I have only contacted agencies via mail - calling ahead and getting in touch with the responsible person seems a very good idea.

Thanks again for all contributions,

Kind regards,

Julia


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Michele Johnson  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 23:23
German to English
+ ...
Expand profile, build kudoz points, adjust cv Mar 28, 2007

3 things immediately come to mind:

1) Expand your profile. If I'm a busy project manager, I need to look at your profile and immediately see what unique characteristics you have to offer. For instance: Books? You've translated books? How interesting - what kind of books? What are the ISBN's? You also need to get it proofread by a native speaker ("I started as a freelance right away").

And don't sell yourself too short ("only finished university last year") - project confidence instead. Convince me why I can't do without you.

2) Get some Kudoz points under your belt. Answer some questions. This gives project managers a chance to see how you think, react, justify your translations, etc. It also places you higher in the list results when someone searches the freelancer database. Garnering even a few kudoz points will distinguish you from the masses who don't participate at all.

3) As a new graduate, I think your CV should be 1 page max, more of a sales brochure than a conventional resume. A potential client needs to look at it and immediately see your qualifications and specialites. As it is, I have to scan to almost the end of page 1 to find out you have an M.A. Your credentials are outstanding IMO - I would definitely emphasize them. I think you could summarize your work experience in just a few lines without giving away the fact that you are a beginner. In a CV, it's usually called "references" not "referees," and I would not necessarily offer this information freely ("References available on request.")

Hope that helps!
Michele

[Edited at 2007-03-28 16:01]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Catherine Brix
Local time: 23:23
Swedish to English
+ ...
Broaden your view! Mar 28, 2007

Freelance translators are not restricted to working for agencies. In fact, you are entitled to compete with agencies for end customers - just don't bite off more than you can chew! You obviously have some engineering expertise if you've interpreted and translated roller bearing-related documents and sessions. Pull out the phone directory and make a list of companies that do business in areas that you feel comfortable with. Call marketing directors, product and production managers, etc and make an appointment. You could always request copies of product sheets and the like to get a feel for the quality of their present translations. If you feel you can do better, say so. Offer to redo something for free just to market your skills.

Presumably you have hobbies or other interests, cooking, fishing, scuba diving. Contact these types of companies.

Don't be shy when it comes to pricing. Call an agency and pretend to be a potential customer. That way you can quote rates that are competitive with agencies and above what you'll get out of an agency. Don't underprice. Business companies are not a price-sensitive as they pretend - and in most businesses, price indicates quality. You just have to go to the supermarket or hairdresser for confirmation.

There's lots of work out there. By directly contacting an end customer you can even create a need the customer didn't even know he/she had.

And remember, tell everyone you meet - from the cashier at the supermarket to spontaneous acquaintances - that you're in business and what your business is. You never know who's standing next to you.

Good luck!


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Jenny Forbes  Identity Verified
Local time: 22:23
Member (2006)
French to English
+ ...
Try Yellow Pages too Mar 28, 2007

Julia Glasmann wrote:

Hello everyone!

I am rather new to the translation business (I only finished university last year) and - quite naturally - struggling for jobs.

Even though I have applied to numerous job offers I haven't got a single job via proz.com so far. As I am competing with a lot of very experienced translators here, I am not too worried about that.

What I am concered about is, that I hardly got any reactions at all, only two or three people had the courtesy to write back (and I think a kind "no" is still better than no reaction). - Is that normal or could it be that it has got something to do with my applications? Do you maybe have any tipps of how to write an application that a potential client might take into consideration even though I am a newbie?

I appreciate any comments on this topic, thank you in advance,
Julia


Hullo Julia,
As I've said in a previous thread on this subject, I started (long ago) by going through the Yellow Pages and selecting what looked like central and well-established translation agencies - I lived in London at the time and there were hundreds of them. Then I sent them my CV and followed up by telephone about a fortnight later. Only very few replied at all, and of those only a few offered jobs, but some of those remain my regular clients to this day.
It's hard to get started, and competition is much fiercer since the Internet arrived.
I agree with others that you need to emphasise your special fields - if you've worked in a particular sphere, you could start with that as your special field, but as you've only just graduated you may not have been employed, which makes it harder to claim special knowledge.
However, those books you translated might help.
I wish you the best of luck,
Jenny.


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Vauwe
Local time: 23:23
English to German
+ ...
Specialize Mar 28, 2007

That's what the collegues already said.
The agencies I found through proz.com contacted me because of my "niche" speciality. Some contacted me when they were in need for a rush job translator. When you handle a rush job to their satisfaction you will also get the "normal" jobs.
And of cause contacts, contacts, contacts.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Juliana Brown  Identity Verified
Israel
Local time: 17:23
Member (2007)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Listen to Jenny Mar 28, 2007

I asked a related question ( about finding clients) a couple of weeks ago, and got great answers which have already started working.
As was mentioned, work on your profile. I'm now hard at work on a (minimal) website, and have already reworked my profile. As a result, I've gotten a couple of calls from people who saw me, who I had not even applied to. That certainly cheers one up...
Also, try the business card route. Cold call and show up at businesses near you who may need your services. You'd be surprised how many will be pleased to get your card because they're not happy with their current translator (especially if it's large agency and you can do a bit better price-wise; without underselling yourself of course).
Good luck, and cross fingers for me too! Also, proz.com does work- I got a nice NGO text my first week...

best,
Juliana


Direct link Reply with quote
 
misscaboo4
Local time: 22:23
Spanish to English
keep at it! Mar 29, 2007

Hi there

I'm a PM for a small agency and as others have indicated we do get a lot of responses to ads, particularly in languages such as FIGS. We tend to stay away from postings as much as possible unless time is tight or we are dealing with a tricky subject.

I would say though that having an excellent profile will always work, with rates stated, your CV with contact details on and examples of work you have done-even if you do some for organisations for free (small projects I mean for well known names!) then PMs have an understanding immediately of who you have worked for as well as text context (to some extent).

It would also be worth getting to know a few other people in your language pair who could recommend you when they are not available, or who you could pair with to proofread their work. If our first choice is not available we always ask if the translator knows someone they can recommend and more often than not, they are available and end up doing a lot of work for us thereafter.

I'd also say that it might be worth attending local business networking events and getting your name out there. You could get interpreting jobs off the back of these which might lead to translation as well.

Good luck!
Catherine


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Deschant
Local time: 22:23
Reply Mar 29, 2007

Sometimes agencies do not reply immediately but they keep your details and if a job which suits your language pairs/expertise appears, they may still contact you several months (or even years) after you sent them your application. So don't think your job search has been fruitless, probably some of the agencies you wrote to will reply sooner or later.

Direct link Reply with quote
 
Lyns
Italy
Local time: 23:23
Italian to English
Feast or Famine Mar 29, 2007

Hi,
I was with a translation agency for a year and was offered only two jobs, both in the week that I was away and couldn't accept them, the rest of the year I sat and waited for a job to come in ... nothing. Then I researched how others used their descriptions etc and started to apply for other jobs and even directly to agencies (guide books, travel agencies etc.) It worked.


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Pages in topic:   [1 2] >


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


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

Hardly any reactions to applications

Advanced search


Translation news





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