Purchase Orders
Thread poster: Raymond Siu

Raymond Siu  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 13:29
Chinese to English
Apr 10, 2011

Hi,

I was wondering how many of you out there require translation agencies to send a purchase order before you work on a project. Would any of you work without one?


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 19:29
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
My approach Apr 10, 2011

New customer? Then always a PO (and even a payment of 1/3 of the mount if I have any kind of doubt about the reliability of the company as a business partner) before starting the work.

Repeating customer? A PO will be required, but they have a couple of days to make one, and delivery never takes place before a PO exists.

Loyal customer? A PO will be required, but the work is done and delivered as agreed and I let them do the paperwork when they have time, even weeks later.

As a summary: NEVER work without a PO stating the exact scope of the work, exact address and VAT number of the customer, name of the project manager ordering the work, exact delivery date (and time of the day if applicable), agreed rate and payment details.

If a new customer asks you do start working because of the urgency of the job, tell them that, because of the urgency, they should issue their PO urgently.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

amurati
Local time: 19:29
English to Albanian
+ ...
how can you send the invoice without PO number Apr 10, 2011

The business works so no matter if the customer is from same town/city or any part of the world.

Direct link Reply with quote
 

David Wright  Identity Verified
Austria
Local time: 19:29
German to English
+ ...
Never Apr 10, 2011

I've been working as a translator for 30 years and it was only once I joined ProZ that even heard of a PO. I've never had one, never asked for one, and never had any bother with any clients about what the job actually is, how much I get paid etc. Informal emails are enough (and legally binding).

[Edited at 2011-04-10 07:50 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 18:29
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
Information but not necessarily PO Apr 10, 2011

Tomás Cano Binder, CT wrote:

As a summary: NEVER work without a PO stating the exact scope of the work, exact address and VAT number of the customer, name of the project manager ordering the work, exact delivery date (and time of the day if applicable), agreed rate and payment details.

If a new customer asks you do start working because of the urgency of the job, tell them that, because of the urgency, they should issue their PO urgently.


I agree entirely with your requirements before starting work, the "exact scope of the work" being file name in, source word count (supposing that is the way I'm billing), document type to be delivered, any formatting requirements ...

However, I rarely receive all this information from the customer and in fact I don't really push for it. Instead, I send them an email detailing everything I know about the job and asking for their explicit acceptance of my terms, along with their invoicing details.

It seems to me that whenever I receive a PO there's something incomplete about it or something that's at odds with what I had understood (often the word count) and it just seems to delay the process and can cause bad feeling because they think I'm being fussy and difficult to work with. I prefer to take and keep control of the process - after all, I'm the one doing the job!


Direct link Reply with quote
 

christeld  Identity Verified
Local time: 18:29
Norwegian to English
+ ...
Not me! Apr 10, 2011

I've never asked for a PO, a very small proportion of my clients do send them but the vast majority do not.

As with Sheila I tend to send the client a summary of what I understand the job to entail (word count, formatting, price, etc.) along with my terms and they tend to send me a job number for invoicing purposes.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Sergei Tumanov  Identity Verified
Local time: 20:29
English to Russian
+ ...
No wonder Apr 10, 2011

christeld wrote:

I've never asked for a PO,...



You do better.
You send a fixture recap for every project; and in such case a PO is redundant.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 19:29
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
"Risk it at your own risk" Apr 10, 2011

OK. Some of you work without a PO, and so do I occasionally. However, given the disputes we see in the fora nearly every other day, isn't it good to recommend everyone to obtain a PO and properly identify job, customer, rate, and payment date? A wider use of a PO with agencies and larger firms would help to reduce the number of disputes and scams.

Implying that it is generally OK to work without a PO puts our younger colleagues at risk, in my opinion.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

xxxIPtranslate
Brazil
English to Dutch
+ ...
With you Apr 10, 2011

Tomás Cano Binder, CT wrote:

OK. Some of you work without a PO, and so do I occasionally. However, given the disputes we see in the fora nearly every other day, isn't it good to recommend everyone to obtain a PO and properly identify job, customer, rate, and payment date? A wider use of a PO with agencies and larger firms would help to reduce the number of disputes and scams.

Implying that it is generally OK to work without a PO puts our younger colleagues at risk, in my opinion.


Think so too. I always work with a PO to avoid unpleasantness, or just to have a clear idea of what is expected of me, when it is expected, and in what form. Practically no agency I ever work with, objected to send me a PO, whatever form it was in (they do tend to differ a lot!).

I use the PO as cover sheet for the project folders I keep on my desk, and when the job is done, it goes into the invoice folder. Avoids me from "forgetting" to bill people at the end of the month, as I am rather hopeless with administration.

Even clients for whom I have been working for many years, send me PO's, although I have to admit that, when jobs are urgent, the PO sometimes arrives after the job has been handed in (known clients whom I trust completely). They, however, always come. Think it is also good for the agency to work in an organized way.

[Edited at 2011-04-10 10:19 GMT]

[Edited at 2011-04-10 10:20 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Raymond Siu  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 13:29
Chinese to English
TOPIC STARTER
Looks like opinions are a bit divided! Apr 10, 2011

Hhmm, actually, I started translating about a year ago, and it wasn't until last month that an agency actually sent me a PO. Before then, I never worked with one, but I have to admit, it does feel a lot more secure and official having one sent along with a project request.

I agree, for those translators just starting out, it would be a good idea to have all the details of a project spelled out on a PO.

Thanks everyone!


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Sergei Tumanov  Identity Verified
Local time: 20:29
English to Russian
+ ...
Has prudence gone forever nowadays? Apr 10, 2011

... I started translating about a year ago, and it wasn't until last month that an agency actually sent me a PO. Before then, I never worked with one, ...


Reading this I cannot resist the temptation to ask a quesion on how many of us do backup copies of our computers BEFORE their first crash?

And even better question:
How many of us start making backup copies of our computers AFTER their first crash?

We can parallell these two problems, I suppose.

[Edited at 2011-04-10 16:37 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Steven Capsuto  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 13:29
Member (2004)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Traditions and laws probably vary by country Apr 10, 2011

As long as all the information and terms have been clearly spelled out and approved by e-mail, I usually feel comfortable starting a job. Most of my customers do send POs, but sometimes they don't get around to sending them till after the job is done and delivered.

I know this approach is unthinkable in some countries. But then, I come from a country where even full-time employment seldom involves a contract (unless you're a very senior executive or a unionized worker).

[Edited at 2011-04-11 01:03 GMT]


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 »

Purchase Orders

Advanced search







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 »
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 »



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