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Client wants discount for repetitions
Thread poster: yne
yne
Local time: 02:09
German to English
+ ...
Jul 12, 2007

Hi,

I have just given a quote for a project. The client now wants to know how I will calculate the price as there are many repetitions
(I quoted in my usual way-- per 1000 words).

As I have yet to invest in Trados/ other software, it would take me a long time to work this out. Do you think it is fair to ask them to highlight the parts they want translated and I will just charge them for that? In other words, hinting that just because it is a "repetition" doesn't mean I don't have to do anything!

I know a similar matter was discussed with regard to Trados, but don't think I am repeating!


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Jan Willem van Dormolen  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 03:09
English to Dutch
+ ...
Get TM software Jul 12, 2007

If you haven't invested in TM software yet, do so at the earliest convenience. It doesn't have to be Trados, Deja Vu or Wordfast or another package will do fine, as long as they are Trados compatible.

That is, if you're going to do translations with repetitions on a regular basis. You will find that within a week after purchasing the program (and I admit, it is a hefty price to pay) you will wonder how on earth you ever got by without it.

Of course, it only pays off when you do repetitious translations. The repetition doesn't have to be within a project, also repetition from one project to another (e.g. regular updates to a standard document) is a sure indication you need TM software.


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Fabio Descalzi  Identity Verified
Uruguay
Local time: 23:09
Member (2004)
German to Spanish
+ ...
Any CAT tool has something special! Jul 12, 2007

Jan Willem van Dormolen wrote:
That is, if you're going to do translations with repetitions on a regular basis. You will find that within a week after purchasing the program (and I admit, it is a hefty price to pay) you will wonder how on earth you ever got by without it.

No doubt, Jan Willem: I bought TRADOS 3 years ago... and it pays itself!
Of course, it only pays off when you do repetitious translations. The repetition doesn't have to be within a project, also repetition from one project to another (e.g. regular updates to a standard document) is a sure indication you need TM software.

That's evident.
If you have to translate, say, 50 commercial contracts per year, you'll do great with a CAT tool.
If you have to translate "El Quijote de la Mancha" into an exotic language... well, I guess you'd better relax, breathe the fresh air, take a goose-pen and ink, and start "writing the book again", i.e. re-thinking everything you write.
Of course that of "goose-pen and ink" is an exaggeration, you can quietly translate the "Quijote" using a PC. But... "El Quijote de la Mancha" translated with a CAT tool - well, I think you'll spend more time with the CAT tool than without.
Unless literary editors think another way...


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yne
Local time: 02:09
German to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
CAT tool Jul 12, 2007

I think I will..I have been thinking about it for a while now, but this could be the right time!

So you think I should offer this client a discount then. Do you when you have repetitions?


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Elisabetta M.  Identity Verified
Local time: 03:09
Member
English to French
+ ...
repetition Jul 12, 2007

I usually do not make discounts for repetitions (it just happened once because the agency asked for it and I really just had to copy paste one doc merely changing dates). I guess it depends on the kind of text you have to translate (e.g. if it's a form where you can easily copy-paste why not).

Reg. cat tools I bought trados few months ago because a fellow translator advised me to do so. I really was not convinced until I tried... But now I am really in love with Trados!!)


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Selcuk Akyuz  Identity Verified
Turkey
Local time: 05:09
Member (2006)
English to Turkish
+ ...
Trados compatible? Jul 12, 2007

Jan Willem van Dormolen wrote:

If you haven't invested in TM software yet, do so at the earliest convenience. It doesn't have to be Trados, Deja Vu or Wordfast or another package will do fine, as long as they are Trados compatible.



I think you mean TMX compatible, am I wrong?
TMX = Translation Memory eXchange


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Mark Cole  Identity Verified
Local time: 02:09
Polish to English
+ ...
It depends on what is meant by "repetitions" Jul 12, 2007

If they mean exact repetitions (or 99/100%matches), then you can charge less (e.g. 10% of the full price) for those, but as Elisabetta says, you can simply used "search and replace" to do those without needing to invest in TM software. I find any repetitions below 95% are not worth their while, because often it is just the same words in a different order with a few new ones thrown in - i.e. a completely different sentence: often it takes just as long to unravel the existing words and make them into a new sentence as translating it from scratch.

Personally I have found Trados to have limited value (I've been using it for more than 10 years), as I translate from many different languages and a lot of my work comes in hard copy (or scanned), but in the long run it does pay off.


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 03:09
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
Tell the client Jul 12, 2007

yne wrote:
The client now wants to know how I will calculate the price as there are many repetitions. As I have yet to invest in Trados/ other software, it would take me a long time to work this out.


I suggest you tell the client that you're not using software that automatically selects or recognises repetitions, and that you can therefore give no discount for repetitions.

Learning how to use a CAT tool takes time, remember. Most CAT tools are complex things (even the simpler ones have a learning curve).

If you think you'll be getting many jobs with repetitions, or if you think you'll lose a lot of work by not giving discounts for repetitions, then invest in a CAT tool. Otherwise, there are many jobs out there that don't require discounts.


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Jan Willem van Dormolen  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 03:09
English to Dutch
+ ...
Trados /= TMX Jul 12, 2007

Selcuk Akyuz wrote:

Jan Willem van Dormolen wrote:

If you haven't invested in TM software yet, do so at the earliest convenience. It doesn't have to be Trados, Deja Vu or Wordfast or another package will do fine, as long as they are Trados compatible.



I think you mean TMX compatible, am I wrong?
TMX = Translation Memory eXchange


No, I definitely mean Trados compatible. Many agencies want Trados files returned back to them. If you cannot provide those, you won't get the business.


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GoodWords  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 20:09
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Discounts reflect reduction in time Jul 12, 2007

yne wrote:
As I have yet to invest in Trados/ other software, it would take me a long time to work this out.


The justification (from the translator's point of view) for granting a discount is that the repetitions mean that you can complete the job in less time; hence your hourly rate hasn't declined even with the discount. But if the reduction in time is offset by the time it takes you to calculate the reduction in time, you aren't saving time at all.


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Alan R King
Local time: 03:09
Basque to English
+ ...
And besides... Jul 12, 2007

GoodWords wrote:

But if the reduction in time is offset by the time it takes you to calculate the reduction in time, you aren't saving time at all.


True. Also, has been pointed out before in these discussion, it is the translator who is usually expected to invest money and time into acquiring the software, learning to use it and making it "profitable". Then the client expects to reap the rewards! So what it all boils down to in the end is that the translator will be no better off than before (because not expected to "charge for repetitions"), but will be more productive without getting any richer, and hence will be more exploited. Some "benefit"! Think about it for a moment... I for one want to be a craftsman, not a slave.

Alan (with a little help from Karl Marx)


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yne
Local time: 02:09
German to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
yes time.. Jul 12, 2007

I have just spent the afternoon trying to download free trial versions of TM systems and am still no further on my quote. Might just offer to do it for 75% of usual rate and be done with it!

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yne
Local time: 02:09
German to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
oh yes and I forgot to mention Jul 12, 2007

it's a direct client

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Amy Duncan  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 00:09
Portuguese to English
+ ...
I agree Jul 12, 2007

Alan R King wrote:

GoodWords wrote:

But if the reduction in time is offset by the time it takes you to calculate the reduction in time, you aren't saving time at all.


True. Also, has been pointed out before in these discussion, it is the translator who is usually expected to invest money and time into acquiring the software, learning to use it and making it "profitable". Then the client expects to reap the rewards! So what it all boils down to in the end is that the translator will be no better off than before (because not expected to "charge for repetitions"), but will be more productive without getting any richer, and hence will be more exploited. Some "benefit"! Think about it for a moment... I for one want to be a craftsman, not a slave.

Alan (with a little help from Karl Marx)


I think CAT tools are a snare and a delusion. You pay for them, and the client or company saves money (by paying you less) when you use them. Also, I find Trados (the one I have) a pain to work with, and I intensely dislike only seeing a tiny bit of the text as I go along.

Amy


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Astrid Elke Witte  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 03:09
Member (2002)
German to English
+ ...
If it is a direct client, surely only the final price is of interest Jul 12, 2007

At least, my direct clients are only interested in a flat-rate price, and not in how I arrive at that price.

The quickest thing to do is count the words, work out how many hours that usually takes, and then glance over the document to see if it is sufficiently repetitive to be done in less time. If so, adjust your estimation of the number of hours required, multiply by your actual hourly rate (which you should always base your word rate calculation on, anyway) and tell the client the price arrived at. Should take less than five minutes and most direct clients want an answer quite quickly.

Astrid


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