It's the first Trados project of this customer, and they will be busy answering questions of some 15 translators from all Europe.
Without having tested the exchange of files, and defined processes, this sounds like a perfect recipe for disaster... (Note that my remark isn't Trados-specific - any project that is executed with a distributed team of this size without some testing is bound to go off the rails, unless you're really lucky.
At least it seems the TM was generated by aligning source and target documents, and then the ttx were pretranslated for 100% matches. The problem is, there are many segments designated as 100% matches, where the target segment is indeed the same as the source segment.
Again, in this project context, pretranslation makes no sense whatsoever.
And many of the proper translated segments need to be corrected. The target segments are from earlier translations, partly by me, partly by other translators, and the terminology needs tuning.
In which case I wouldn't even bother discussing any weightings for match percentages.
But the good news is, that I am able to deliver the job in time by translating the rtf-files. Then I will clean them, send them to the editors for spell-check etc., apply the corrections to the uncleaned files and send them to the customer.
Let's hope the customer doesn't come back screaming that the reimport into the DTP application has failed. (It wouldn't be the first time this happens...)
In fact some other customers use this procedure for tagged files since years without problem.
Sure - I didn't say it won't work, but you need to be careful, particularly when you don't know the source file format.
And for the invoice I will clean the final version, delete all superfluous stuff (formatting information, delimiters and pretranslated segments) and count the rest with Word as usual.
The problem remains, that this customer had paid up till now according to text volume (lines of text), but now starts to talk about Trados word-rates before we translators even had time to negotiate the new rates.
Once again, their project management doesn't appear to be up to scratch: these things need to be negotiated and agreed upon before you start translating. Anyway, given the problems with the reference material, I would flatly refuse any such reduction.
Best regards, Ralf