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Large Document to Translate
Thread poster: Daniela Ballif
Daniela Ballif  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 21:24
English to Albanian
+ ...
Mar 29, 2005

I was asked by a translation agency to translate a large document, they said about 1000 pages of a semi-technical document. How do I charge for this large project, per page, per word, or per hour?

Any ideas will be very helpful, and very appreciated.

Thank you in advance,
Daniela


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NancyLynn
Canada
Local time: 23:24
Member (2002)
French to English
+ ...
I have two pieces of advice Mar 29, 2005

Hi Daniela,
I see your pair is not a common one. My pairs are. This may colour my opinion, but based on experience, in your situation I would
1) charge per word
2) when setting the rate, keep in mind that volume means work.
The agency will try to convince you that this volume deserves a discount, but please bear in mind the following points.

While you are working on this project you will be unavailable for other jobs. This fact should be reflected in your per-word rate. In other words, calculate how long this project will take you, and try to forecast how much money you would normally make in this period taking on other jobs. Since you're not in this game to lose money, be sure that your income level is not adversely affected by what the agency will remind you is 'volume'. Believe me, this makes for much better client-translator relations further on down the line. Remember, they may come back to you with more large projects and if you've given a low rate for this one, you risk painting yourself into a corner. Furthermore if the rate paid for this project is a decent one, you will not be tempted by other jobs throughout the project. You won't feel as though you have to 'make up' for lost income by offering too low a rate for several weeks' worth of work; and this way you will concentrate on the main project and deliver a better product.

I hope these thoughts help you in your decision.

Good luck!

Nancy


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Riccardo Schiaffino  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 21:24
Member (2003)
English to Italian
+ ...
Ask for an advance and a schedule of payments Mar 29, 2005

1000 pages are probably going to be around 250,000 words: it may take you 100 to 125 working days.
You should agree on a schedule of payments, so that you get a certain amount (say, 20%) up front, another 10% every month, so that at the end of the project (around 5 months) you'll already be paid 70% of the total amount - with 30% to be paid one month after the final invoice.

For such a large project DO NOT accept to be paid only after project completion, and don't let them talk you into discounting your rates (because it's such a big job).


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NancyLynn
Canada
Local time: 23:24
Member (2002)
French to English
+ ...
Thank you Riccardo Mar 29, 2005

You make an excellent point regarding a schedule of payments.

Nancy


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Rosa Diez Tagarro  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 05:24
Member (2003)
English to Spanish
+ ...
definitely Mar 29, 2005

Couldn't agree more with both Nancy and Riccardo.

It is exactly what I would recommend.

Good luck!

Rosa


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Daniela Ballif  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 21:24
English to Albanian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thank You Mar 29, 2005

Nancy, Riccardo and Rosa,

Thank you so much for your help. I feel so much better now about discussing pricing with the agency.

Best regards,
Daniela


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