Mobile menu

Communication with translation agencies
Thread poster: Emma Hradecka
Emma Hradecka  Identity Verified
Czech Republic
Local time: 22:59
English to Czech
+ ...
Apr 15, 2009

Hello, I would like to know how you communicate with translation agencies. In the Czech Republic it's almost never face to face, mostly by telephone and email.

I am asking because I finished my translation studies university degree and need to establish myself as a freelancer - and I've been thinking of offering my services to translation agencies in the countries of my working languages (UK, Spain, possibly US or South American countries). I'm translating/interpreting part-time (meaning 4 hrs/day) for a financial company in the CR, so this means long-distance cooperation (even though I wouldn't mind moving to the UK or Spain if I got an offer of some translation/interpreting-related job).

Do you think it nonsence to contact agencies from other countries when you're not living there?

Thanks for your replies.


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Quattro
United States
Local time: 13:59
Not at all :) Apr 16, 2009

Hi Emma,

I think it would be a great idea to contact translation agencies in the country you live in and from other countries as well. I'm from Denmark, but moved to the US and have been a freelance translator for 5 years. I work with agencies from almost all over the world, although mostly with ones in the US and the UK, but I think it's very exciting.

I guess it can be riskier too, though, if you run into bad payers. But I have always been paid. As long as you make sure to investigate each agency a little before you decide to work with them, you should be able to manage.

Bank transfers can be costly, so maybe it would be good to consider other payment methods, such as PayPal or Moneybookers. Another thing is payment terms: in the US net 30 and net 45 are common; in the UK it could be net 60. And then you have different time zones! If there's a 12-hour time difference, it may be difficult to get in touch with your clients if you have questions or for them to reach you if they have an urgent job.

In short, I think it's worth considering. Give it a try and see what happens. You may be surprised to see where your language pairs are most in demand. Good luck!


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Lucy Brooks  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 21:59
German to English
+ ...
It's probably the best way of building your client base Apr 16, 2009

I live in the UK and a very large proportion of my work (I would say around 80%) is for agencies and direct clients outside the UK - Germany, Belgium, Sweden, Switzerland, Slovakia, Canada, New Zealand. And I've been working with firms in Europe since I began as a freelancer back in 1991, in the days of faxes and FTP uploads, and even snail mail. Nowadays telecommunications are very much better.

It's certainly very possible to build relationships using telecommunications. Some of the agencies I work with use Skype, all use email of course, and for urgent queries, they usually call on the phone first. Many have their own servers for uploading and downloading work.

And, if I happen to be travelling in their region, I ask them if I can call in and visit. It makes a nice change to visit people I have known for a while, but never actually met.

Go for it. ProZ is as good a place as any to start your search for good agencies in other countries.

Lucy




[Edited at 2009-04-16 07:14 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Lucy Brooks  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 21:59
German to English
+ ...
Money issues Apr 16, 2009

Adding to my earlier post: to deal with currency problems and the cost of bank transfers, I set up a euro bank account in Germany, and also have a Paypal account for Canada and the US.
I also only bill once a month, rather than issue lots of little invoices. Then, if there is a bank charge, it's only one on payment.
As Marie-Louise said, you should always check out the creditworthiness of the agency before you start - the BlueBoard is good here, and there are other facilities available too where you can ask colleagues for an opinion about a certain agency.
Lucy


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Emma Hradecka  Identity Verified
Czech Republic
Local time: 22:59
English to Czech
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks Apr 16, 2009

Thanks a lot for your suggestions and advice (more are welcome, of course). I will take my time browsing Proz and searching for good agencies to contact

Direct link Reply with quote
 


To report site rules violations or get help, contact a site moderator:


You can also contact site staff by submitting a support request »

Communication with translation agencies

Advanced search


Translation news





SDL Trados Studio 2017 Freelance
The leading translation software used by over 250,000 translators.

SDL Trados Studio 2017 helps translators increase translation productivity whilst ensuring quality. Combining translation memory, terminology management and machine translation in one simple and easy-to-use environment.

More info »
memoQ translator pro
Kilgray's memoQ is the world's fastest developing integrated localization & translation environment rendering you more productive and efficient.

With our advanced file filters, unlimited language and advanced file support, memoQ translator pro has been designed for translators and reviewers who work on their own, with other translators or in team-based translation projects.

More info »



All of ProZ.com
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs