Accepting a 2nd big job from new translation agency...
Thread poster: eurolanguagesPt

eurolanguagesPt  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:48
Portuguese to English
+ ...
May 5, 2010

Hello everyone,

This topic may have been previously discussed, but I didn't find anything and have to make a quick decision. My doubts are:
Does the reasonable translator

1-accept a second large job from a new client without receiving payment for the first one? There is no info about this client on the Blue Board. I don't feel comfortable taking it without knowing anything about this person especially that I've already been ripped off by a translation agency who owes money to many translators...
2-Docs have images with text that is wrong and it’s complicated/impossible (I don’t have much knowledge in this area) for me to change it
All input will be appreciated.
Thanks,
E. Melo


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Madeleine MacRae Klintebo  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 17:48
Swedish to English
+ ...
Assuming you're not a DTP professional May 5, 2010

1. Never - BB or not
2. Image manipulation is DTP work - unless you have DTP tools, and experience, supply an excel file with two columns, original + translation, and let the client's DTP person copy+paste into the original file. You can then proof the result.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Noni Gilbert
Spain
Local time: 18:48
Spanish to English
+ ...
No May 5, 2010

1. The payment of the first project is a sine qua non for acceptance of the second. You can say that this is your policy with all new clients. It is completely reasonable. And if they pay you by cheque, it must be a bank-guaranteed cheque, since it can bounce well after you've cashed it, leaving you overdrawn and high and dry.

Let me give you an example of how careful others are to cover their backs in another field. I order books from a distributor and they offer me two options for payment: either cash on delivery, or credit, but only if this is backed up by a bank guarantee (aval in Spanish). I have the latter, I spend five figure euro amounts with them every year, but they still won't offer me straight credit! This is becoming increasingly common practice.

2. If text for translation is not in suitable format (ie Word or similar) then a) ask for it to be provided in Word or similar and insist that you will also return it only in that format (ie not in the original format) or b) say that you will provide the translation of that section of the text in Word or similar. I've just completed a translation of a Powerpoint document with inserted images, and the client agreed immediately to my suggestion of sending them back in Word, and apologised for not having suggested this themselves.

If you client is an agency, then they should then take charge of reinserting and proofreading. If it's a direct client, then proofread as Madeleine suggests, although I would factor the time you might have to spend doing this into your pricing.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Neil Coffey  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 17:48
French to English
+ ...
Have they actually broken the payment terms? May 5, 2010

I think ultimately you have to do what you feel is comfortable.

Personally, I wouldn't generally penalise an agency unless they've actually broken any terms. So provided that the outstanding payment isn't overdue, its non-payment wouldn't prohibit me per se from taking on another job in the meantime.

It isn't unreasonable for the agency to pay whenever is convenient for them within the agreed terms. So I wouldn't take the behaviour you mention as necessarily a sign of trouble, unless you have some other reason to suspect. Suddenly introducing a new rule that you hadn't agreed to in advance might sour relations with an agency that was about to give you a stream of large jobs...

In the future, you could think about establishing a maximum credit for a given client and being up front about it. The obvious problem is this will exclude you from certain jobs, so you have to weigh up the pros and cons.

[Edited at 2010-05-05 21:44 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Marijke Singer  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 17:48
Dutch to English
+ ...
Go with your gut feeling May 6, 2010

You could ask for the first invoice to be paid now. I would also inform them about the issues with the layout.

I always find that being candid and open works. Explain that you run a business and that you cannot be exposed to too much risk. Word it in a language that they understand and that they also use.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Angela Dickson  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 17:48
French to English
+ ...
Payment practices May 6, 2010

eurolanguagesPt wrote:

There is no info about this client on the Blue Board.


There are lots of payment practices lists that are not the Blue Board. I recommend you consult them.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

eurolanguagesPt  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:48
Portuguese to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Greatly appreciated! May 6, 2010

I was pleased to read all of your comments, and ended up mentioning to the client in question that I'm concerned about the possibility of non-payment, since it's happened to me in the past...will see what happens.
Thank you all!


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 18:48
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Listen to your gut feeling! May 6, 2010

I completely agree with Marijke. If it does not feel right, it is most probably not right. Just wait for the first invoice to be paid, or simply tell them about your feelings and ask for a quicker payment or at least a quick payment of 50% of the first invoice (the rest when it is due) before accepting a new assignment. If they are reasonable, fair people they will try to listen to your worries and act upon them.

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 »

Accepting a 2nd big job from new translation agency...

Advanced search







Anycount & Translation Office 3000
Translation Office 3000

Translation Office 3000 is an advanced accounting tool for freelance translators and small agencies. TO3000 easily and seamlessly integrates with the business life of professional freelance translators.

More info »
SDL MultiTerm 2017
Guarantee a unified, consistent and high-quality translation with terminology software by the industry leaders.

SDL MultiTerm 2017 allows translators to create one central location to store and manage multilingual terminology, and with SDL MultiTerm Extract 2017 you can automatically create term lists from your existing documentation to save time.

More info »



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