Looking for translators to cover me while I'm on vacation
Thread poster: Débora D'Eramo

Débora D'Eramo
United States
Local time: 11:03
English to Spanish
Dec 13, 2005

Dear everybody,
I'll be going on vacation from February 1st to March 19th, a long time indeed, but it happens that my husband and I are traveling to Spain to visit my parents, who live there. I've been searching some old threads looking for some info on how to deal with clients during one's absence, and I noticed that most colleagues suggest sending an advance notice to agencies and setting up a translation team to outsource jobs and then split up rates with team members.
I wonder if any of you could give me a hint as to how to find colleagues willing to form a team, not only for this vacation, but for long-term collaboration.
Any help will be appreciated.


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Claudia Iglesias  Identity Verified
Chile
Local time: 11:03
Member (2002)
Spanish to French
+ ...
Hi Débora Dec 13, 2005

I would not recommend to my clients people that I don't know enough. If you don't already have a team, I'd suggest just to drop a line saying that you won't be available. They will find another solution.
But if you recommend somebody, they will think that this person will do a job with similar quality than yours, but...are you sure of that?

Claudia


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Lucinda  Identity Verified
Local time: 12:03
Member (2002)
Dutch to English
+ ...
Hi Debora, Dec 13, 2005

Claudia is right. I once had someone cover for me during illness and my very long-term client wrote back asking me if I was better now because the work was not up to par and he wanted me to redo it. He would rather have that happen as there was still time.


So, I was lucky. He was upset but we had worked together so long that he asked if I could rectify the job.

But what if in their - justified in my case - anger they decide to take their business elsewhere and stay away.

Hnadle this one very carefully, Debora!

Good luck and have a safe and pleasant holiday.

Lucinda

[Edited at 2005-12-13 19:23]


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Dolores Guinazu  Identity Verified
Argentina
Local time: 12:03
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Hi Debora! I believe that setting up a reliable team would be the best idea. Count with me on this! Dec 13, 2005

Débora Costa de D'Eramo wrote:

Dear everybody,
I'll be going on vacation from February 1st to March 19th, a long time indeed, but it happens that my husband and I are traveling to Spain to visit my parents, who live there. I've been searching some old threads looking for some info on how to deal with clients during one's absence, and I noticed that most colleagues suggest sending an advance notice to agencies and setting up a translation team to outsource jobs and then split up rates with team members.
I wonder if any of you could give me a hint as to how to find colleagues willing to form a team, not only for this vacation, but for long-term collaboration.
Any help will be appreciated.


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Gabriela Lozano  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 10:03
English to Spanish
+ ...
You have some time until February Dec 13, 2005

to put a team together. You could post it in the jobs section and explain. I think you could ask for resumes and samples of translation, also do not forget to discuss fees, etc. Go by instinct and choose some four or five people to recommend to your clients. You could send the chosen translators some work in January and see if they are as good as they say.
My opinion is that you should not leave your clients just like that without recommending someone else to back you up while you are gone, the probability to loose them is higher than if you recommend someone and he or she is not as good as you. I think is good to explain your clients the situation when recommending these people (that you have just recently started working with them; that you saw their work and trust their quality, etc.).
If you decide to put a team together, please consider my resume at proz.
Saludos,
Gabriela


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Cristina Heraud-van Tol  Identity Verified
Peru
Local time: 10:03
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
I agree with this Dec 14, 2005

linaza wrote:

to put a team together. You could post it in the jobs section and explain. I think you could ask for resumes and samples of translation, also do not forget to discuss fees, etc. Go by instinct and choose some four or five people to recommend to your clients. You could send the chosen translators some work in January and see if they are as good as they say.
My opinion is that you should not leave your clients just like that without recommending someone else to back you up while you are gone, the probability to loose them is higher than if you recommend someone and he or she is not as good as you. I think is good to explain your clients the situation when recommending these people (that you have just recently started working with them; that you saw their work and trust their quality, etc.).
If you decide to put a team together, please consider my resume at proz.
Saludos,
Gabriela


========

I also once had to hire somebody (on this same PROZ website) to back me up and finish an urgent translation as I was terribly sick. I was lucky and the translator happened to be very good, so there were no problems. I also think that your clients are important and you should not lose them; you may test translators before you go on a trip to see the queality of their translations, preferably from Argentina (where you come from) and with similar expertises as you have, so that the words and subjects remain the same and very uniform to yours. You may also provide them with glossaries you are already have, so that they use the same words. Explain your clients about the trip, that other translators will help you for the meanhwhile and that if for any reason they are not satisfied with the translations, you will proofread them as soon as you are back.


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Timothy Barton
Local time: 16:03
Member (2006)
French to English
+ ...
Could you not work anyway? Dec 14, 2005

Débora Costa de D'Eramo wrote:

Dear everybody,
I'll be going on vacation from February 1st to March 19th, a long time indeed, but it happens that my husband and I are traveling to Spain to visit my parents, who live there. I've been searching some old threads looking for some info on how to deal with clients during one's absence, and I noticed that most colleagues suggest sending an advance notice to agencies and setting up a translation team to outsource jobs and then split up rates with team members.
I wonder if any of you could give me a hint as to how to find colleagues willing to form a team, not only for this vacation, but for long-term collaboration.
Any help will be appreciated.


If you're away for so long, could you not work anyway? I usually work when I'm at my parents, though they are only a 2-hour flight away, so I probably see them more than yours. But if you're their for two and a half months you could do the work you get sent, but not apply for any new work, that way you should still have plenty of spare time. And if you get sent too much, you can always turn down some jobs, as I'm sure you must have to turn down jobs sometimes anyway when you're overloaded.


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Lawyer-Linguist  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 16:03
Dutch to English
+ ...
Agree ...... take a laptop Dec 14, 2005

Timothy Barton wrote:

Débora Costa de D'Eramo wrote:

Dear everybody,
I'll be going on vacation from February 1st to March 19th, a long time indeed, but it happens that my husband and I are traveling to Spain to visit my parents, who live there. I've been searching some old threads looking for some info on how to deal with clients during one's absence, and I noticed that most colleagues suggest sending an advance notice to agencies and setting up a translation team to outsource jobs and then split up rates with team members.
I wonder if any of you could give me a hint as to how to find colleagues willing to form a team, not only for this vacation, but for long-term collaboration.
Any help will be appreciated.


If you're away for so long, could you not work anyway? I usually work when I'm at my parents, though they are only a 2-hour flight away, so I probably see them more than yours. But if you're their for two and a half months you could do the work you get sent, but not apply for any new work, that way you should still have plenty of spare time. And if you get sent too much, you can always turn down some jobs, as I'm sure you must have to turn down jobs sometimes anyway when you're overloaded.


Personally that's what I'd do too, possibly after having the first week or so purely as holiday - I arrange with my regular agencies to give me their shorter assignments with overnight deliveries when I can't work as normal and just put in an early shift before breakfast. It's better that, than losing contact and visibility for such an extended period. They appreciate it.

I've needed to rely on colleagues twice. The first experience was positive and the work was of a very high standard, although the colleague was a bit too laid back about the deadline. The second time was a disaster from start to finish and I ended up re-doing the job.

The sorry fact is that some colleagues (if in a subcontracting situation) do not put the same care and attention into work (or the deadline) as they would with a direct end-client and agency. That of course is a generalisation, but something you need to consider.

Personally I'd be upfront about my availability, show some flexibility and not have the hassle.

Just my opinion.

Good luck and have a great time with your parents.
Debbie


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Wenke Geddert  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 16:03
Member (2004)
English to German
+ ...
Mobile office... Dec 14, 2005

I usually go to Germany and Spain for a month or two a year. As I do have access to a telephone line there I can continue to work (although at a slightly slower pace than I am used to with my broadband connection in the UK). I think it is a good solution, as you can keep your current customers happy whilst deciding how much work you can / want to take on - and obviously I don't have a loss of income.

Unfortunately, I don't have experience with translation teams but I would definitely not pass on regular work to "holiday cover".

Hope this helps.

Wenke


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Débora D'Eramo
United States
Local time: 11:03
English to Spanish
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks everybody Dec 14, 2005

I want to thank everybody for taking the time to answer.
Have a nice day!


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