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Availability indication
Thread poster: Jason Grimes

Jason Grimes
Local time: 16:14
SITE STAFF
Mar 24, 2005

You may have noticed a new icon in your member info box in the upper left corner of the page:
Availability:
If you click the little round availability icon, a popup dialog will appear that allows you to report your current availability to outsourcers.

If you are available to accept new projects immediately, set your indicator to:
Yes, I am available
If you are not currently available and you do not wish to be contacted about immediate projects, set your indicator to:
No, I am not available
Your availability will be shown in your profile page, and in the new freelancer directory. Outsourcers with urgent projects in your specialty will know whether or not they should contact you.

Since the availability indicator is intended to show immediate availability, it should be changed when your availability changes. To keep availability information current, the system generally only retains it for one day. You must refresh your availability indicator by setting it again within that time or it will change back to unreported.

For convenience, platinum members are only required to refresh their availability indicators once per week. However, all members are encouraged to update their availability indicator whenever their availability changes.

Your comments and suggestions are welcome.

Best regards,

Jason


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LegalTransform  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 16:14
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Availability Indicator Mar 24, 2005

AWESOME!!

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Vladimir Dubisskiy  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 15:14
English to Russian
+ ...
below Mar 24, 2005

Jason,
The Indicator itself is really awesome. Looks nice (green is very friendly..).
However, I have tried to work through the freelancers directory in the role of a person looking for a translator. Oh, boy, there are so many subjects there.. even to see such a vast array can be spooky) I mean I believe there are too many specialities mentioned there. It would be nice to have say 10 - 15 max. Then the client and translators could discxuss it in more details between themselves.

Another issue to mention here - current time in terms of availability. Say, yes, I AM available and available, say, immediately, but if client is in Europe and myself in Canada we have 10 hrs difference and my immediate availability will start when I will awake, at least at 6 or 7 am. It would be worth to mention the time difference somewhere as sometimes with all those 'techno marvels' (email / worldwide phone / etc.) people forget how big our planet is and that the dramatic time difference does exist))


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Henry Dotterer
Local time: 16:14
SITE FOUNDER
"Current Availability" lamps to be used as a general signal Mar 25, 2005

Hi Vladimir,

For now, please think of availability as a rough indicator. If you are not looking for new clients right now, set it to red. If you are open to looking at projects, set it to green. That's all.

It is not an ideal solution and we will enhance it in the future. But for now, this gives outsourcers more information than they had before. For example, I have already seen a red indicator. (Edit later: Now, over 60 members have gone red.) These will save outsourcers time.


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Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 22:14
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
+ ...
Agree with Vladimir Mar 25, 2005

With small languages and even big languages, but which the outsourcer does not speak, they mostly think: Oh, that must be German, or: Looks like Finnish to me. They cannot specify the field no way. And who cares of the field? For small languages it's a question if you understand the language well and are ready to learn somehing new. Almost every week I have to learn a field of expertise completely new to me.

Even in the Kudoz section I have difficulty to find the right field of expertise for a question to post. The selector box is too long, but even then the question does not fit in any of these fiels very well.

Regards
Heinrich


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Elías Sauza  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 14:14
Member (2002)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Congratulations! Mar 25, 2005

Henry and all at proz.com.

Congratulations for improving the site day by day.

Elías Sauza


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Ines Garcia Botana  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:14
Member
English to Spanish
+ ...
Excellent idea! Mar 25, 2005

Thank you for improving this site day by day!

Inés Garcia Botana


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Williamson  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 20:14
Flemish to English
+ ...
Time Management Feature Mar 25, 2005

Very good feature.
Just a thought/suggestion: I wonder whether as Proz develops,it would be possible for a translator to indicate the volume(s)he is capable/willing to translate per week/month or the time (s)he is available. ex. max.10000 words/month, available 8.30-16.30 Gmt. A time-management feature which might come handy for outsourcers and translators.


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Taranichev  Identity Verified
Local time: 21:14
Russian to German
+ ...
Good idea! Mar 25, 2005

.. and very nice tool!

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Harry Bornemann  Identity Verified
Mexico
English to German
+ ...
Very handy Mar 25, 2005

And it provides the data for a future available/undefined/busy-log over the last 3 months per language direction, for example.

[Edited at 2005-03-25 14:11]


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xxxBrandis
Local time: 21:14
English to German
+ ...
interesting indeed Mar 25, 2005

Hi! I would find it equally useful if the list of translator (from an outsourcer´s point of view) would have these lamps as in this particular list, so that the availability is clear and probably also the choice of a translators,easier. Here I was infact looking at the list of translators in a given language combination by posting this URL.
http://www.proz.com/index.php3?sp=wi
Regards,
Brandis

[Edited at 2005-03-25 17:44]


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juvera  Identity Verified
Local time: 20:14
Member (2005)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
Expertise and minority languages Mar 26, 2005

[quote]Heinrich Pesch wrote:

"With small languages and even big languages, but which the outsourcer does not speak, they mostly think: Oh, that must be German, or: Looks like Finnish to me. They cannot specify the field no way. And who cares of the field? For small languages it's a question if you understand the language well and are ready to learn somehing new. Almost every week I have to learn a field of expertise completely new to me."

I think the theme belongs to the one recently posted by Henry about field of expertise, but I had to include Heinrich's posting.
What he says is correct, and in minority languages we often tackle things we are not experts in, but have to learn and do a lot of research when doing it. Simply, there is no expert in the field who is also a translator. Ideally one would corner an expert and ask for cooperation, but that is not always practical.
By translating a certain amount on the subject, some of us will know much more about it than others, therefore it becomes his/her expertise. If you go on doing it for 10, 15 years, that is a lot of knowledge on a very large number of subjects.
It is probably counterproductive to list 20 subjects of expertise, on the other hand some people have really worked in numerous fields, others have not.
No point saying "specialise in a few areas", because in a minority language there isn't so much work in a certain field.

I am not going to recommend anything at this stage, I just wanted to bring attention to an other dimension of the subject.


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Konstantin Kisin  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 20:14
Member (2004)
Russian to English
+ ...
Setting availability/unav for a chosen period of time Mar 27, 2005

Hi Henry and Jason,

Let me start by saying this is a great addition. I would have killed for one of these when I had some urgent work to outsource a couple of weeks ago!

I think a way to improve it would be to give (platinum) members the option of selecting the time period for which they wish to set the current avail. status. So instead of updating every week, you could set your status to Red for the 3 weeks you're on holiday, and to Green for the 3 weeks that you know are always quiet (nothing to stop you from changing it to Red if you get unexpected work).


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Lawyer-Linguist  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 20:14
Dutch to English
+ ...
Semi-availability? Mar 28, 2005

Great addition - I'd like to suggest a further colour that would indicate you are presently busy with a longer project but can look at smaller projects. (amber perhaps for "semi-availability")I personally accept longer projects with deadlines that allow time for that, as a smaller filler project often helps break the monotony of a larger one and I find I'm more productive that way. That way outsourcers would know only to approach you with smaller assignments - say up to 1500-2000 words and you wouldn't be out the market altogether.

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Susana Galilea  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 15:14
English to Spanish
+ ...
I second this suggestion Mar 29, 2005

Deborah do Carmo wrote:
Great addition - I'd like to suggest a further colour that would indicate you are presently busy with a longer project but can look at smaller projects. (amber perhaps for "semi-availability")I personally accept longer projects with deadlines that allow time for that, as a smaller filler project often helps break the monotony of a larger one and I find I'm more productive that way. That way outsourcers would know only to approach you with smaller assignments - say up to 1500-2000 words and you wouldn't be out the market altogether.



I was going to make the same suggestion, thanks for adding such a useful feature.

Susana Galilea
Accredited Translator EN-ES
sgalilea@ispwest.com
www.accentonspanish.com


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