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huge (potential) project from direct client
Thread poster: Francesca moletta

Francesca moletta
Italy
Local time: 17:41
English to Italian
+ ...
Apr 20, 2005

Hello,

I was asked for an estimate from a direct French customer.

The words involved are 25,000. So it's quite a huge job.

I'm about to send him the estimate and I'd like to put the terms of payment in it.

As I don't need extra headaches I'd like to ask for a partial payment in advance.

What do you think of 50%?

I'm not used to work with direct customers and I'm thinking of how he could react to my request. Things like: what about if YOU don't send me the translation after I pay or if you send a poor-quality job? I'd fully understand him.

How do you manage this kind of situations? I also thought to give him 50% of the translation as a first step... but we all know it's counterproductive in terms of translation quality.

I've got quite a good stream of projects so I don't really NEED this one... but at the same time I'd like to implement my business and work with direct customers.

Thanks in advance for your precious suggestions!


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Maurizio Foroni  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:41
German to Italian
+ ...
Staggered payment Apr 20, 2005

Hi Francesca,
I am also in the same situation. I am thinking of a payment "in instalments" like that:

30% in advance
30% upon delivery of the first half
40% upon delivery of the whole project

Maybe he/she is more likely to accept a 30% instead of 50% advance payment...

Comments are welcome.

Regards
Maurizio


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Francesca moletta
Italy
Local time: 17:41
English to Italian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
LISA Apr 20, 2005

In LISA site I found a contract template http://www.lisa.org/members_info/ethics.pdf. They suggest:

.33.3% of the approved forecast as an up-front payment within 10 days after start of the project
• 33.3% after delivery of the final goldmaster
• 33.3% within 30 days after delivery of the final goldmaster

in this way one can avoid partial deliveries.

I don't think delivering 50% of the job is a good idea!
Just think if you realise term X had to be translated by term Y (whreas you translated it by Z) while translating the second part and the client is already working on the 1st part you delivered!

Maybe a good idea would be sending him the rough job after 15 days just to show him you're working on it.


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pep
Local time: 17:41
English to Spanish
If the direct client looks solvent Apr 20, 2005

If the direct client looks solvent (if they are a public company take a look at their balance sheet, for example), just grant them credit and offer them your normal payment terms, for example, 30 days.

If they are really not going to pay you, there is not much difference between getting one third of the value and getting nothing.

But make sure though that you can really do the job (ie that you have the skills). I've never heard of any case of a solvent company not paying for a job done professionally.

Have them send you a Purchase Order, stating the amount, payment terms and scope of work to avoid misunderstanding afterwards. Smaller companies don't tend to be very strict with this with tangential thing as translation and you can run into trouble for example if it is an industrial company whose culture is paying at 90 days for example.

Ifyou have doubts about the solvency of the company, then maybe you can be more aggressive with your demands (not telling them about your doubts, of course!).


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M-E BELL  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 17:41
Member
English to French
+ ...
Volume and payment Apr 21, 2005

Hello Francesca,

Well, do you really mean 25K or did you miss a zero? In terms of volume, 25k is a standard manual and represents (assuming 10k/week) 2.5 weeks work. This doesn't seem to warrant staggered payments which would normally be required when a job is likely to spread over more than a month, i.e you request the equivalent of a month's salary. In this case, the usual practice is to calculate the monthly equivalent (portion of the total) and, of course, draw a contract. It's exactly the same as a purchase order, only more detailed. It's also standard practice for any contractor and, as translators, this is what we are. You can find an example of contract on the ITI site (www.ITI.org.uk).
As for staggered delivery, I agree that it is not advisable, the main argument being that the final proof-reading requires the whole document. There are exceptions to this (urgency, volume, etc..), but you should make this clear to your client and even add a disclaimer to that effect.

I hope this helps!

Good luck!

M-E BELL


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Francesca moletta
Italy
Local time: 17:41
English to Italian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
thanks Apr 21, 2005

M-E BELL wrote:



Well, do you really mean 25K or did you miss a zero?



I mean 25,000 words

[/quote]

In terms of volume, 25k is a standard manual and represents (assuming 10k/week) 2.5 weeks work.

[/quote]

I don't have the intention to stop working for my other customers for 2.5 weeks; I'm planning (if ever he accepts my estimate) to give him a 2month-deadline.

[/quote]

It's also standard practice for any contractor and, as translators, this is what we are. You can find an example of contract on the ITI site (www.ITI.org.uk).

[/quote]

I cannot find it. Maybe they removed it.

thanks M-E BELL


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M-E BELL  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 17:41
Member
English to French
+ ...
Model terms of business Apr 21, 2005

Francesca Moletta wrote:

M-E BELL wrote:



Well, do you really mean 25K or did you miss a zero?



I mean 25,000 words



In terms of volume, 25k is a standard manual and represents (assuming 10k/week) 2.5 weeks work.

[/quote]

I don't have the intention to stop working for my other customers for 2.5 weeks; I'm planning (if ever he accepts my estimate) to give him a 2month-deadline.

[/quote]

It's also standard practice for any contractor and, as translators, this is what we are. You can find an example of contract on the ITI site (www.ITI.org.uk).

[/quote]

I cannot find it. Maybe they removed it.

thanks M-E BELL[/quote]

Hello again!

No, they didn't but it's in the members section.

I'll sen it to you.

M-E


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