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Thread poster: LottaJ

LottaJ
United Kingdom
Local time: 07:52
English to Finnish
Jun 8, 2007

I am looking for some opinions on what course to take on my career as a translator.
I have an MA in English, and have done some small jobs alongside my studies but no real freelance work. At present I am on my last month of a traineeship in an EU institution, and looking for a job. I would like to translate from English into Finnish but to live and work in the UK (not Finland). I have been adviced against starting off as a freelancer and to look for an in-house job first, as it would be more secure financially.
However, I am finding it difficult to find anywhere to send my applications and am wondering whether I am looking for a job which does not exist - it seems there is greater need for German or French translators- in other words, can anyone advice on what the market is in UK for Finnish in-house translators?
I have also considered going back to university, possibly to do a 2-year MA in international politics in Bologna, Italy, to specialise and to be able to improve my Italian so that I could have another working language. But I am not sure doing this would actually increae my chances of getting a job (or freelance work).
I would be happy to hear any comments or recommendations.


Lotta


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Crystal Samples  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 02:52
French to English
+ ...
companies vs. agencies Jun 8, 2007

I'm not from Finland or the U.K., but I would guess that the demand for Finnish translators in the U.K. is not all that great. However, instead of a translation agency, you could try an in-house post in the translation department of a company in the U.K. that does a great deal of business in Finland. Try to think of any British owned companies that are prominent in Finland or that have branches or subsidiaries there. Or maybe a Finnish company that does a lot of business in the U.K. and/or has subsidiaries there.

Also, you might not want to limit yourself to the U.K. I saw on careerbuilder.com that an American company is looking for an in-house Finnish translator. See link:

http://www.careerbuilder.com/JobSeeker/Jobs/JobDetails.aspx?ipath=EXIND&cbsid=&siteid=cbindeed&Job_DID=J3I3C26SQ2MQSFRWK7F

[Edited at 2007-06-08 19:40]

Good Luck!

sindee21

[Edited at 2007-06-08 19:41]

[Edited at 2007-06-08 19:55]


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Pavel Blann  Identity Verified
Czech Republic
Local time: 08:52
Member (2005)
English to Czech
imho Jun 9, 2007

1. studying another language/field(s) in another country would broaden your horizons and future options (the longer the better)

2. studying translatology/finnish/journalism would enhance your career as a general translator (but you might like to specialize)

3. you can continue to do small jobs alongside your studies and possibly build up your client base slowly but continuously

re: in-house jobs, I think they are getting rare as outsourcing is taking over translating in most companies


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Peter Shortall  Identity Verified
Local time: 07:52
Member
French to English
+ ...
UK in-house demand Jun 9, 2007

I was hoping to find an in-house position here myself a few years ago, but eventually gave up on the idea because it seemed that the few vacancies that did come up were almost exclusively for German translators, and I dropped German when I left school (d'oh!) One recent trend I've noticed is that quite a number of the vacancies that appear on UK recruitment websites nowadays are with companies/agencies in the Irish Republic - so all in all, I don't think your chances of finding an in-house position here are very high, I'm afraid to say.

However, what you could perhaps do instead would be to find a job of some other kind (this might also help you as a translator, depending on what it is) and do some freelance translation on the side, which is what I did. Unless you're very lucky, it'll probably take you a while to build up a client base - but when you've managed that and you feel the time is right, you can switch to full-time freelancing.

I can't comment on how useful doing an MA in Italy would be since I have no idea how large the Italian-Finnish market is, nor do I know whether politics-related translations are in much demand in your language pair(s).

[Edited at 2007-06-09 01:41]


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Williamson  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 07:52
Flemish to English
+ ...
Specialize Jun 9, 2007

Wouldn't it be more useful to specialise in another direction, say economics, IT,....
This would certainly broaden your perspectives on the normal, career-oriented job-market.
If you insist on being a freelancer : There is such a thing a freelance IT-consultant too. Most of them have fixed contracts and earn a lot more on the average than a translator. FinnishEnglish is a rare combination. Wouldn't it be wiser to learn German? The Italian translation-market does not pay that much.
And how difficult would learning Estonian be for you?


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Sian Edwards  Identity Verified
Local time: 07:52
German to English
How about Translation Project Management? Jun 10, 2007

It's a good chance to see the other side of the industry, get some training in CAT tools, get some idea of the sort of rates people charge, and check out the competition. Some smaller agencies might let you translate as well as manage projects. The down side is that it can get very, very stressful, and if they don't give you the chance to translate, you might find your translation skills going rusty.

I know of one agency in the UK that specialises in Nordic languages, and they are looking for Project Managers at the moment. It might be worth sending your CV off to them even if you don't fancy Project Management. I'm new to Proz, so I don't know whether forum etiquette permits me to reveal their name and contacts. Let me know if you're interested and I'll e-mail it to you if necessary


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LottaJ
United Kingdom
Local time: 07:52
English to Finnish
TOPIC STARTER
email Jun 10, 2007

Hi Sian

I have not ruled out working in Project management, so it would be really great if you can end me the details. My email is xxlotta.jansson@gmail.comxx (remove x's).


cheers
Lotta


Sian Edwards wrote:

It's a good chance to see the other side of the industry, get some training in CAT tools, get some idea of the sort of rates people charge, and check out the competition. Some smaller agencies might let you translate as well as manage projects. The down side is that it can get very, very stressful, and if they don't give you the chance to translate, you might find your translation skills going rusty.

I know of one agency in the UK that specialises in Nordic languages, and they are looking for Project Managers at the moment. It might be worth sending your CV off to them even if you don't fancy Project Management. I'm new to Proz, so I don't know whether forum etiquette permits me to reveal their name and contacts. Let me know if you're interested and I'll e-mail it to you if necessary


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xxxmediamatrix
Local time: 04:52
Spanish to English
+ ...
Logic ... Jun 11, 2007

There's no need to get an MA in international politics if all you want to do is brush up your Italian.

And if you had an MA in international politics - alongside your other academic qualifications and experience - then I see no reason on Earth why you would still be keen to find a low-paid job as a translator.

However, an MA in international politics might help you get properly-rewarded employment in something other than translation.

So, if you feel there's a fair chance of winning that MA, go for it!

MediaMatrix


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