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Salary of a Junior translator
Thread poster: JennyC08

JennyC08
Local time: 07:23
German to French
+ ...
Mar 10, 2005

Hi there!

I don't really know if it's the right place for that post, so forgive me if not!

I have been offered a position as a Junior translator and I wanted to know what it means. I have been working for about 7 years as technical translator (5 of them were as Localisation manager) and I didn't consider myself as Junior!
If employed as a junior translator, I am assuming that the salary would be lower than the one of a senior translator. So what is the salary that can be expected?

Thanks a lot (Hope I will have answers soon as it is pretty urgent!)

Caroline


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Astrid Elke Witte  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 13:23
Member (2002)
German to English
+ ...
Lower than that of a Senior Secretary Mar 10, 2005

Hi Caroline,

It doesn't sound like it's quite the right position for you, actually. In Germany, junior translators in full-time positions can hardly even match a secretary's salary, but would certainly get less than a senior secretary.

I don't, of course, know what salaries are like in Canada.

Astrid


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JennyC08
Local time: 07:23
German to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Danke schön! Mar 10, 2005

Thanks Astrid for your prompt reply!

Now I am a bit frightened, don't really know what to do.
I hope to get some other replies!


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teju  Identity Verified
Local time: 05:23
English to Spanish
+ ...
Can you ask them? Mar 10, 2005

[quote]CarolineC wrote:

If employed as a junior translator, I am assuming that the salary would be lower than the one of a senior translator. So what is the salary that can be expected?

Forgive me for stating the obvious, but can you ask them what exactly does a junior translator do and what is the salary? I'm wondering if you applied for this position, or if it was offered to you. We always try to match our level of experience to the position that we apply for. It's just as bad to apply for a job when you are underqualified as when you are overqualified.
Your best approach is honesty. It's important for the company to hire the perfect person for the position (and of course, you don't want to sell yourself short either). Put your cards on the table, let them know the experience that you have under your belt during the interview. Who knows if they could offer you something better once they meet you.
Good luck to you!


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Ken Cox  Identity Verified
Local time: 13:23
German to English
+ ...
it all depends Mar 10, 2005

It depends on the organisation, and in particular the size of the translation department (if there actually is one). If it's a public service job, the job grade should be well defined; if it's in private industry, you'll have to ask (and of course you should!).
Generally speaking, I suspect that with seven years of experience you're overqualified for a 'junior translator' position, since that's likely to be a starter position for someone just out of university or with only a couple years of experience. If you still want the job, I'd strongly recommend finding out as much as you can about advancement opportunities before you sign (if they have only one senior translator and a couple of junior or intermediate ones, your chances of promotion are probably fairly bleak), and if possible negotiating a higher position before you sign (my experience is that it's always best to start as high as you can manage; catching up can be difficult to impossible once you're in the organisation).

Good luck!


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Orla Ryan  Identity Verified
Ireland
Local time: 12:23
overqualified Mar 10, 2005

With 7 seven yrs experience, you should not even be considered for a Junior position, but rather senior translator/translation project or quality management.
Again, it depends on your own situation, if you're doing fine as you are by freelancing, would'nt you be taking a pay cut by taking this job? is there room for negotiation? After all, seven yrs experience is not to be sneezed at and your salary and job title should reflect this.

bonne chance!

Orla


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JennyC08
Local time: 07:23
German to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
... Mar 11, 2005

Thanks to all of you!

First, I thought that maybe I was wrong about the definition of "junior".
I took a translation test a while ago and then, they sent me an e-mail saying that they really need to have someone very quickly (it is a translation agency, not the government).
When confirming the appointment by e-mail, it was then stated that it was for a junior translator position, to my greatest surprise! Because I originally applied as technical translator, nothing else was stated.

And yes, I am going to try to clarify things!
In my previous job, I was hired for a very low salary and it's true that it is really hard, even impossible to catch up.
I will try to negotiate, because it would be weird on my CV that I was Localisation manager and then junior translator!

Thanks again.

Caroline


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xxx00000000
English to French
+ ...
Strange Mar 11, 2005

CarolineC wrote:
have been offered a position as a Junior translator and I wanted to know what it means.
[...][/quote]

It means nothing at all if it doesn't come from the person who's considering hiring you.

A job offer usually comes with more details than just a title. So I imagine it's just some informal preliminary talk to see whether you might be interested. It's up to you to set your lower limit in your mind and ask the person about the job description and salary. I wouldn't go by the title at all. Get the specifics and be firm. If it doesn't suit you, look elsewhere. With the experience you describe, you should be able to find a good position.

Best,
Esther


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Mónica Machado
United Kingdom
Local time: 12:23
English to Portuguese
+ ...
localisation manager vs translator Mar 13, 2005

Hello Caroline,

I was a bit puzzled with your statement reading "I will try to negotiate, because it would be weird on my CV that I was Localisation manager and then junior translator!"

Do you mean that being a Localisation manager would make it easier for you to became a senior translator? Aren't tasks completely different? For me, a localization manager is someone who manages localization projects but it doesn't mean that that person is a translator. Maybe I got it wrong.

If you have several years' experience as a translator it will be normal to be considered a senior translator. However, it all depends on your areas of expertise and the subject matters that that company want you to work on. For instance, I am an experienced translator in automotive technology but if a company wants to hire me to translate medical texts I won't even be considered a junior because I have no experience in the medical area.

So in this case, that company might consider you a junior because they might feel they still need to train you for the given tasks. On the other hand, being considered a junior is a reason to pay less. So, yes, it is a good idea to check with them.

My two cents
Best regards,
Mónica Machado


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JennyC08
Local time: 07:23
German to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Just a clarification Mar 13, 2005

Thanks Mónica for your answer.
When I was localization manager, I was also writing and translating technical documents. I wasn't only managing localisation projects, so that's why I found it a bit surprising that they would consider me only as junior translator.

I shall see on Monday! I will let you know.


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JennyC08
Local time: 07:23
German to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Continuation... Apr 6, 2005

Hi,

Just to give some news as many people here were kind enough to answer!
I had some news about that job position. It seems that for them, "the title is not important" (that's what they said to me).
But to me, the title is most of the time related to the salary they can offer. So after insisting a bit, they told me that I can be considered as an "Intermediate translator" not senior, as I don't have the experience working for a translation agency...

Any thoughts about that?


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