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Advise on hourly rate for PM
Thread poster: Jay Kim

Jay Kim  Identity Verified
South Korea
Local time: 13:29
English to Korean
+ ...
May 15, 2008

Hi all,

Just started collaboration with a French company specializng in linguistic validation of medical questionnaires as local project manager. My role is to coordinate all projects in target country, recruit/supervise a small team of translators, suggest translation decisions and choices, privide regular feedback and interview patients when required. I can still keep freelancer status and will be paid by project-to-project basis. They want me to propose hourly rate in Euros for all these and it is difficult for me to figure out ideal rate at this point. Linguistic validation of clinical queationnaire is complicated, demanding job and single project can last several weeks or even months. If I take over this type of project as translator and reviewer in target language(without my team), I would like to charge them at least €40/hour.

However without much experience in project managing, I need help from someone with good experience. TIA.

Best,

Jay

[Edited at 2008-05-15 06:29]


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Stanislaw Czech, MCIL  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 05:59
Member (2006)
English to Polish
+ ...
40 Euro Seems rather steep May 15, 2008

For someone without "much experience in project managing" but maybe I am wrong.

Good luck
Stanislaw

[Edited at 2008-05-15 08:56]


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Alex Eames
Local time: 05:59
English to Polish
+ ...
They will negotiate anyway May 15, 2008

So start high and be prepared to be flexible.

40 Euro/hr is a decent amount. If they are willing to pay it then why not?

There's only three ways to earn a lot as a lone translator...

1) Charge a lot
2) Work a lot
3) (1) + (2)

Alex Eames
http://www.translatortips.com/
helping translators do better business

[Edited at 2008-05-15 09:42]


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Jay Kim  Identity Verified
South Korea
Local time: 13:29
English to Korean
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
I basically think 40 Euros/hour is stiff because May 15, 2008

Thank you, Stanislaw and Alex. Alex, my choice is 3). Combination of 1) and 2). Upon second thought, I think I have to pay more attention to how many hours I have to put into one single project of this type. Before new project kicks in, I need to spend several hours a day on recruitment, research and project organization. That will make average 15-20 hours per week over 2-3 weeks. Once we start, I need to spend 5-8 hours until we reach reconciled translation stage - average 25-40 hours per week over 2-4 weeks. From completion of back translation toward finalization, average 8-10 hours a day, 40-50 hours per week over 2-4 weeks. Total hours would be 200 hours minimum. With similar cognitive debriefing for which I did not do forward translation, I invested approximatey 200 hours until completion of lengthy review over 1 1/2 months. With regard to rate per hour, their note says

"Please note that the type and complexity of the work is not to be reflected in your hourly rate itself, but rather in the number of hours to be spent on the project, which you would have to agree with one of our project managers before the beginning of each project."

The company is big leader in this area but I do not know €30-35/hour for 200-hour plus project can make sense to them(???). I am prepared to be flexible but not to be miserable. I wonder how you think.

Jay

[Edited at 2008-05-15 17:23]


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Alex Eames
Local time: 05:59
English to Polish
+ ...
I think you have to estimate a realistic number of hours... May 15, 2008

...and they should be prepared to pay for it.

Pharmaceuticals is big business and clinical trials cost a fortune. The translation is fairly trivial in comparison. Bottom line. You want to be paid well for what you do or why bother to do it?

Don't let them stitch you up. Don't sign a blank cheque. Projects have a horrible tendency to grow due to "unforeseen circumstances" that the other party to the agreement may very well know about. They are just unforeseen by you because the other party is dishonest. Be careful.

You could tell them how much you want for the whole job and put a limit on how many hours that will buy them.

Alex Eames
http://www.translatortips.com/
helping translators do better business


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Jay Kim  Identity Verified
South Korea
Local time: 13:29
English to Korean
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Sensible point. Minumum hours should be dealt with first.. May 19, 2008

Thanks again, Alex. You might be aware of nature of this type of work -- cognitive debriefing and linguistic valiadation. Working as PM in target language with team of forward, backward translators and specialists in France, I need to face unforeseen circumstances depending on project. When my job is done at certain stage, others may put me on hold for a number of days or 1-2 weeks. I am half-engaged with works at this point and cannot tackle new jobs for other clients. So comes "TENDANCY TO GROW" and I am obiged to hang on there for indefinate period of time.

I'd better give them my estimate of number of hours and discuss putting on minimum hours for their project before looking into rate per hour.

Thanks and regards,

Jay



[Edited at 2008-05-19 06:09]


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