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Should I stop working with outsourcers in China or India?
Thread poster: Ahmad Hassaballa

Ahmad Hassaballa  Identity Verified
Egypt
Local time: 13:55
Member (2005)
German to Arabic
+ ...
Mar 28, 2007

Hello everybody,

How is it with Chinese or Indian clients? Do you feel that working with far eastern companies is a good idea?

I see always claims or let say complaints that these companies pay low prices, or even don't pay (I had this experience twice anyway). Do you think that the right choice is boycotting any job coming from bad/unprofessional far eastern translation company?!!

I really don't have anything against them, as I do have clients there, who are very professional, friendly in delaing, and fast payers. However most of them are low rate payers, unprofessional in dealing, have no quality problems (Are you available for a job from .. to .. at USD 0.03?)

Badly need your opinons!

[Subject edited by staff or moderator 2007-03-28 07:29]


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Ralf Lemster  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 13:55
English to German
+ ...
Do not work for companies with bad business practices, wherever they are Mar 28, 2007

Ahmad,
On a general note, I would advise caution in using concepts such as 'boycott'.

I wonder what statistical basis you have used for your conclusions. Judging from several years of experience in moderating Jobs and the Blue Board, I certainly don't see any clustering of risks in Asia (or in any other region, for that matter).

Make sure you know who you're dealing with before doing business, regardless of where they are located.

Regards,
Ralf


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Ahmad Hassaballa  Identity Verified
Egypt
Local time: 13:55
Member (2005)
German to Arabic
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
You're partially right Mar 28, 2007

Hello Ralf,

Thanks for your note. I agree with you regarding choosing the good partnership wherever it is, but on the other hand I noticed too many complaints concrning this region in particularm which may indicate to something, right?


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Inga Jakobi  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 13:55
Member (2006)
Chinese to German
+ ...
Not everybody wants to boycott them Mar 28, 2007

Hi there,
everytime, when I see job postings from Indian or Chinese companies offering 0,04 USD max, I do not apply because for me - living in germany - this is below any realistic rate. I would so much like to have clients in China as I translate from Chinese, but I could not afford living on that. I set an absolute minimum rate I work for, which is probably still too low for many fellow translators but I have one client paying this minimum rate, but paying immediately which is quite good as well, so I accept the rate. As for far eastern companies, you have to consider their living conditions. In China for example some people can live a whole year on what some translators in Europe earn in one month, so I can understand that they might not be able to afford more. But for "us" this is just unpossible. Quality has it's price and I assume that many companies then choose a non native speaker and go for the lower quality. But there are also translators in western countries who accept such rate, I fear. And it's not only the far eastern companies. Two weeks ago I applied for a job posted on proz by a USA-based company. They wanted me to deliver the perfect (they stressed this) translation of 8000 words from Sunday evening until Tuesday at a rate of 0,04 USD. I was just speechless. AFAIK, living expenses in the USA are higher than in Europe, so why would they pay such lousy rates?
I think everybody who wants to is already boycotting these agencies, whether they are in far east or anywhere else.
Cheers,
Inga


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Ralf Lemster  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 13:55
English to German
+ ...
No clustering in particular Mar 28, 2007

Hi again,
Ahmad Hassaballa wrote:

Hello Ralf,

Thanks for your note. I agree with you regarding choosing the good partnership wherever it is, but on the other hand I noticed too many complaints concrning this region in particularm which may indicate to something, right?

What I'm trying to say is that the basis for your conclusion is insufficient. I find your conclusion all the more surprising as (IIRC) you also had some problems with outsourcers in other parts of the world.

In other words: if you decide to stop working for outsourcers in China or India, that's perfectly alright for you. Generalising is not.

Best regards,
Ralf

[Edited at 2007-03-28 09:34]


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Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 14:55
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
+ ...
Stick to your rates Mar 28, 2007

I regard it generally unfair against those oursourcers, that pay decent rates, if we accept jobs for much lower rates from outsourcers of low-wage countries.
Because the endclients come usually from high-wage countries, they should have no advantage when using agencies in low-wage countries. Also the user of the translation will generally live in a high-wage country like Europe, so there is no need to work for peanuts.
There are not so many native speakers of German, Swedish, Finnish etc. living in low-wage countries, so there is no fear really that we would lose out against competition if we only stick to our rates!

Cheers
Heinrich


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Ahmad Hassaballa  Identity Verified
Egypt
Local time: 13:55
Member (2005)
German to Arabic
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
This is absolutely what I mean Mar 28, 2007

Heinrich Pesch wrote:

so there is no need to work for peanuts.
There are not so many native speakers of German, Swedish, Finnish etc. living in low-wage countries, so there is no fear really that we would lose out against competition if we only stick to our rates!

Cheers
Heinrich


Thanks Heinrich! (y)


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Boris Sigalov
Local time: 14:55
English to Russian
Boycotting Mar 28, 2007

Ahmad Hassaballa wrote:

I noticed too many complaints concerning this region in particular which may indicate to something, right?


Ahmad,

I have noticed the mentioned tendency too and took a corresponding decision. I don't urge anybody to follow: I have just took that decision for myself as Ralf suggested.


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Fan Gao
Australia
Local time: 21:55
Member (2006)
English to Chinese
+ ...
You have to be more selective Mar 28, 2007

Ahmad Hassaballa wrote:
I do have clients there, who are very professional, friendly in delaing, and fast payers. However most of them are low rate payers, unprofessional in dealing, have no quality problems (Are you available for a job from .. to .. at USD 0.03?)

I think if you're accepting work from clients who are "low rate payers" and "unprofessional in dealing" etc., then you're asking for trouble no matter where they're located.

We have a couple of clients within mainland China who are excellent clients and who are prepared to pay that extra for quality, but they are very few and far between. At the end of the day there are good clients and there are bad clients spanning the entire globe, you just need the experience to know which ones to avoid.

Good luck,
Mark


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Claudia Krysztofiak  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 13:55
English to German
+ ...
Why only far eastern? Mar 28, 2007

Ahmad Hassaballa wrote:

Do you think that the right choice is boycotting any job coming from bad/unprofessional far eastern translation company?!!



I absolutely agree with Ralf, why only bad/unprofessional far eastern companies? I would stay away from any bad/unprofessional translation company. And it seems there is plenty to choose from all around the world. You just have to take the pain and do some research on unknown clients, ask some very clear questions and say no, if they are not answered in a professional and reasonable way. This is not [only] a question of rates.

Regarding rates: It always comes down to the same. Calculate what you need for a living, study the market and on these grounds decide what your minimum rate will be, and then stick to it. Go out and search for clients, do not just sit and wait until they come to you. Offer your services, act professionally and with time success will come.

Translators living in Germany who translate for 0.04 Euro per word are often students or people who translate for pocket money, i.e. they do not need to make a living from it. Or they manage to really get around with a very basic lifestyle. This is a decision people have to make for themselves. But I doubt there are enough of them to endanger our existence.


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Angie Garbarino  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 13:55
Member (2003)
French to Italian
+ ...
Absolutely Mar 28, 2007

Claudia Krysztofiak wrote:I would stay away from any bad/unprofessional translation company. And it seems there is plenty to choose from all around the world


I strongly agree with you, non/bad payers are located all over the
world

Bye bye

Angio

[Edited at 2007-03-28 10:00]


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Inga Jakobi  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 13:55
Member (2006)
Chinese to German
+ ...
Absolutely with Claudia! Mar 28, 2007

Claudia Krysztofiak wrote:

I would stay away from any bad/unprofessional translation company. And it seems there is plenty to choose from all around the world.


That's exactly what I think! There are these companies everywhere and it is up to you to "boycott" them or not. I would only boycott those that are paying bad or even not paying - wherever they are, and I would work for those paying acceptable rates in far east or everywhere else. It's not a question of generally boycotting agencies from country xy, but of avoiding those who act unprofessionally, pay bad or don't pay.

Regards to everybody,
Inga

[Bearbeitet am 2007-03-28 10:04]


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aruna yallapragada  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:25
Member (2008)
German to English
+ ...
non-payers Mar 28, 2007

After reading the response I just had to write my experience. I totally agree with Claudia. I cannot say anything about Indian agencies as I have never worked for them. But non-payment for work done is found everywhere. I have been waiting for payment from an agency based in Europe for the past four months.

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Jarosław Zawadzki  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 13:55
Chinese to Polish
+ ...
The rates Mar 28, 2007

The rates/salaries/wages in China are low, not only for translators but for all sorts of employees and especially workers. EUR 0.04 per word (or Chinese character) is very common here. As for the non-payers, I had no such experience with Chinese clients but some Polish companies did cheat me over small amounts though.

Jarek from Shenzhen


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Levan Namoradze  Identity Verified
Georgia
Local time: 15:55
Member (2005)
English to Georgian
+ ...
On my side... Mar 28, 2007

Ahmad Hassaballa wrote:

Do you think that the right choice is boycotting any job coming from bad/unprofessional far eastern translation company?!!


I almost never accept offers from India.
Regards,
Levan


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