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Unsuccessful bids - feedback should be provided
Thread poster: Nikki Scott-Despaigne

Nikki Scott-Despaigne  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:23
French to English
Sep 19, 2001

When you receive a message that your bid has been unsuccessful, in addition to a \"thanks for your bid\" message, it would be useful to have some feedback. What I have in mind in particular, being told which bid was usccessful. In the case of public bids where a sample was asked for and provided, the possibility of comparing the successful and unsuccessful bids can be informative. It also clarifies some of the criteria upon which a choice is being made (pricing!).



Any comments? Any chance of change?


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DR. RICHARD BAVRY
Spanish to English
+ ...
Sounds reasonable - but don't hold your breath. Sep 21, 2001

Sounds like a reasonable request to me. But I would not hold my breath.



Moreover, public bids with \"sample translations\" generally devolve into a surrealistic circus, IMHO, and those who post jobs would be better served by far by making their bids private.


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Nikki Scott-Despaigne  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:23
French to English
TOPIC STARTER
Sep 21, 2001

Since posting my first message here, I have been able to access to \"closed bids\" and find out what I was interested in finding out.

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yacine  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:23
Arabic to French
+ ...
results and aggreement Oct 12, 2001

Dear Nikki,

can you tell us what you found after accessing to the closed bids ?

I fully agree to what you said before

Yacine



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Nikki Scott-Despaigne  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:23
French to English
TOPIC STARTER
Closed bids - or why you didn't get the job! Oct 12, 2001

Let\'s get this clear, I am not bitter and have a full-time workload. But this does not stop me wanting to expand my client base and so when a Proz job appears which is of interest to me, I put in a bid.



My limited experience of job-hunting on Proz basically shows that the job almost always goes to the lowest bidder. So be it.



I am based in France where almost 60% of what your client pays you ends up in the state\'s purse in the form of retirement and health contributions and tax. This makes us quite expensive to hire and not highly competitive outside the EU. Indeed, even within the boundaries of the EU compared with some other member countries, we are automatically priced out of the market.



I have a minimum rate below which I work at a loss, or almost. Sometimes it\'s OK as there is a large volume of work behind it all, although you can trap yourself into doing tons of work for one client at a terribly low rate, and you could be doing the same volume for a number of clients at a much higher rate. So even then I am very careful. However, when fellow Proz are able to put in offers at 50% my minmium rate, that must be very tempting for the client. If the quality is there, then the client would be a fool to look any further. If it\'s not, caveat emptor!



Demanding clients are interesting to work for, they generally know what they want. I get satisfaction from knowing that if a tough customer is satisfied, then I have done a good job. They might not always be able to do it themselves, almost always not, in fact. However, many DO know whether you are sending them quality work or not. The large majority of my clients are used to dealing with English language material and ask questions about choice of terms, expressions and so on. We get to know each other through these discussions as they explain things which concern their work. I have an eclectic mind and passion for almost anything is often enough to inspire me! In turn, my clients understand my passion for my work, and my concern for a job well done. They are prepared to pay the price. And they come back for more!



When you are new to a market, breaking through can be difficult and it is tempting to undercut as a matter of principle. But this is not always a good idea for you. A client gets used to your rates, try raising them and see what happens! I raise mine a bit every year. If you realise that you have set your rates much too low and that you are working at a loss, or just breaking even, you\'ll have problems before very long.



As I am getting a little \"hors sujet\", then just a final word to say that most of my clients are in France, but I have some regular ones in the UK, Switzerland and the US. None quibbles about prices.

[ This Message was edited by: on 2001-10-12 23:49 ]


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CLS Lexi-tech
Local time: 11:23
Member (2004)
English to Italian
+ ...
How did you find out about closed bids? Oct 21, 2001

Quote:


On 2001-09-21 07:17, nikscot wrote:

Since posting my first message here, I have been able to access to \"closed bids\" and find out what I was interested in finding out.





In another thread I was asking the same thing, i.e. feedback on bids on the part of the outsourcers as to change strategy or tack in the future. I mean something very short like \"rate too high,\" \"not enough experience in the field\" etc.



Good idea, and tell us more.



thanks



paola l m

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Nikki Scott-Despaigne  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:23
French to English
TOPIC STARTER
In reply to Paola Oct 22, 2001

It was quite simple. I had kept a note of the URL and went back to have a look at it. Never the less, you can log in and look back... I think.



On one particular occasion, the potential client had contacted me off-Proz asking if I could lower my price. I suspect she had done this with others too. I refused as I was already close to rock bottom price. She subsequently refused a person who had offered half what I had, saying he was too expensive. That one got the better of me and I wrote a nice short message saying that if she did really need to have her text translated and someone was offering to do it for so little, then she should jump at the chance. In the end, she replied perfectly politely explaining that she had decided not to have it translated at all, as she had not realised just how much it was going to cost.



Coming back to your main point, the more I think about it, the more I realise it could be difficult (and a pain in the neck) for potential clients to say why he/she has rejected a particular offer.



Turning things on their head, I would be happy for clients to get some Browniz for saying why they chose a particular offer. It could even just involve ticking a box, for example :



Thank you for using Proz.com. Proz members find it useful to receive feedback on jobs on which they submitted a bid. Please could you explain your choice :



- best sample (where appropriate)

- most relevant experience

- best price

- availability

- native speaker (moot point!)



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Martin Perazzo  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 17:23
Spanish to English
+ ...
Excellent suggestion! Nov 20, 2001

Great suggestion, Nikki. Prospects\' grading of bids would help us get some feedback on why our bid wasn\'t considered. However, if I were a prospective customer and were swamped by hundreds of bids, I\'d have more than enough on my plate just choosing whom to entrust the job with! Be that as it may, I still think it\'s an excellent suggestion and I hope it gets the mileage it deserves.



Martin J. Perazzo


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Nikki Scott-Despaigne  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:23
French to English
TOPIC STARTER
How it could be done? Nov 20, 2001

Quote:


On 2001-11-20 15:22, Nexus wrote:

...However, if I were a prospective customer and were swamped by hundreds of bids, I\'d have more than enough on my plate just choosing whom to entrust the job with! ...

Martin J. Perazzo





Which is why I think it ought to be posted up in the return \"sorry you didn\'t get the job\" message which all unsuccessful bidders to a job already receive. It woudl not involve the poor client writing individually to hundreds of would-be jobbers.

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