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Need advise on ENG>KOR rate in France
Thread poster: Jay Kim

Jay Kim  Identity Verified
South Korea
Local time: 19:35
English to Korean
+ ...
Nov 4, 2007

Hi,


I was approached by French agency with ENG>KOR translation of ITEC theory exams for beauty specialists. I translated 5 papers(Skincare & Eye, Manicure & Pedicure, Professional Conduct & Business Awareness, Make-up and Waxing) with over 10000 source words. It was highly specialized, complicated work and I had to work over 3 weeks before delivery. I initially quoted 0.06 Euro per word after reviewing samples. Now I regret I should have charged at least 0.07-0.08 Euro because it was much more complicated, time-consuming one than I imagined. I like to know what would be average ENG> KOR or ENG>ASIAN market rate in France and especially rate for specialized subjects. I think I'd better discuss revised rate with them before sending invoice if 0.06 Euro is too low for this type of translation!

Thanks in advance for your help.



Cheers,



Jay


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Patricia Lane  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 12:05
French to English
+ ...
several points Nov 4, 2007

Good morning Jay,

Several points in your message require a response.

First, there is not A translation market and A rate, but many markets and many rates, which can range from the sublime to the ridiculous. It is up to the professional service provider to set his or her rate, it is not to be dictated by an agency; if the spread is important, a negotiation often takes place to arrive at a mutually accepted compromise.

Second, it sounds from your posting that you agreed to a rate, accepted a PO and did the work. If that is the case, take it as a lesson learned -- unless there are radical changes to what has been agreed upon during a project, renegotiating terms once the work is finished is a no-go.

Finally, I see from your profile that your standard rate is 0,15 USD/word, yet you accepted this project at 0,06 €/word, which is really low ball IMHO for any project. You have set your base rate and I would encourage you not to deviate much from it lest your ability to negotiate a reasonable rate in the future be severely compromised.

Best,

Patricia


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Annelise Meyer  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 12:05
English to French
+ ...
rather low I think yet... Nov 4, 2007

Hi Jay,
Though I would never personnally accept such rates, here is what I think you should do, ie something several colleagues alreay advised in other threads: simply divide the sum you are going to get from the agency by the time you spent on this job. If you feel the amount you get is worth the time and efforts you spent on the job, then the price is OK. Though I definitely hope it won't be, all the more since (or so I think) Korean must be rather rare enough so as to be better paid than languages such as French.
Anyway, I am into European languages, so I might mistaken on this...! But the main point is: the right rate is the one that seems acceptable to you and that also allows you to live correctly enough (if you wanted to be rich, you'd have gotten into a different business in the first place, wouldn't you))
Cheers,

Annelise


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Hipyan Nopri  Identity Verified
Indonesia
Local time: 18:05
English to Indonesian
+ ...
A Comparison Nov 5, 2007

Hi Jay,
I do not work for English to Korean, but as a comparison my standard rate US$0.12 is acceptable to European agencies.
Finally, your idea of renegotiating the agreed rate would undermine your credibility in the eyes of your client.

Best Regards

Hipyan

[Edited at 2007-11-05 09:04]


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Jay Kim  Identity Verified
South Korea
Local time: 19:35
English to Korean
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
A lesson learned Nov 6, 2007

Hi Patricia, Annelise and Hipyan,

Thank you for kind, honest feedback to my query. It was 1st collaboration with this French agency and I offered special discount for her because she was looking for competant ENG>KOR translator who can help her on regular basis. What I regeret is my discount was 'too deep' and I found I undersold myself. I am going to ask her 0.08 to 0.1 next time. Considering translators working in my pair are rare in Europe, I can suggest rate higher than 0.1 based on European standard but if my rate is as high as or close to that of colleagues based in Europe, she will dump me and look for some other Korean guy. I am Asian but I do not work for Chinese, Hong Kong, India or even local companies simply because many, if not all, Asian outcourcers suggest USD 0.04 - 0.07 per word in my pair. It is shame that many Korean colleagues accept such miserable rates and they are too shy or conservative to discuss problems with friends on the other side of globe. As Patricia pointed, I set my ENG>
KOR base rate as $0.15. Reality is I can charge some decent US agencies $0.1 at best(not specialized subjects). Only decent ones. For most US companies, 0.08 or below is norm despite steep depreciation of USD. If I quote my set rate of 0.15, no US companies will be interested in my service.

Like many others say, rate is basically very personal choice. Whether it is high or low. Though I always think there should be guidelines for minimum rate per word/hour for each pair in our industry. We venders work in buyer's market and we definately need some protection. Rate is very sensitive issue and I do not like to go further. Sorry about my rant.



Thanks again,



JAY

[Edited at 2007-11-06 11:07]

[Edited at 2007-11-06 11:07]

[Edited at 2007-11-06 11:09]

[Edited at 2007-11-06 14:25]


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