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Floor plan
Thread poster: raptisi

raptisi  Identity Verified
Greece
Local time: 17:22
English to Greek
+ ...
May 21, 2013

I have recently been asked by an agency to provide a floor plan of my domicile (including working space) and, actually, a pretty detailed one, describing light and light switches, phone sockets, etc.
Is this commonplace?


 

Anna Sarah Krämer Fazendeiro
Germany
Local time: 16:22
Member (2011)
English to German
+ ...
Certainly not usual May 21, 2013

This is not common and it is, in fact, one of the strangest things I ever heard that an agency could acutally ask.

I would like to know if anyone has an idea what could be behind that? Anyone trying to break into the house? Or a perfectly harmless explanation?

Best regards,
Anna


 

raptisi  Identity Verified
Greece
Local time: 17:22
English to Greek
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Floor plan May 21, 2013

Danke!
I thought it myself as being strange, although the agency in question is respectable and established. They claim it as part of some kind of security procedure, odd though!


 

Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 16:22
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Suggestions for more information requirements May 21, 2013

Why not? Blood and urine samples, criminal records, a character reference from the local priest, a certificate of good standing with our landlords...

My experience is that rates offered by an agency are inversely proportional to the amount of information they want from you, so if they ask for a layout of your working space... the rate must be ridiculous.

It is always good to ask for a commitment on a sensible rate level before investing any time preparing information for an agency. If you have not discussed rates yet, you better ask now, and avoid disappointment and frustration in a few days.


 

Diana Coada  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:22
Portuguese to English
+ ...
The most ridiculous May 21, 2013

thing I've ever heard. Be careful!

 

ExScientiaVera
Faroe Islands
Local time: 15:22
Danish to English
+ ...
It is a brilliant idea... if you a diamond in the rough May 21, 2013

Or a bad joke.
This is the kind of request Google would make. If you are a candidate for an executive or creative, developmental job with this company, I say go for it.
It can also be a bad joke, where two PMs in that company are betting on who is desperate enough for a job.
It could also be an alternative way of testing translators, to see if they can translate interior design.
It could also be a con artist who is going to break in at night.


 

Jane Proctor  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 16:22
French to English
Love it! May 21, 2013

Hilarious.. watch out for the hidden cameras, previously installed in the hope that you will actually go ahead with this very important request, getting down on your hands and knees checking and counting plug sockets etc..icon_eek.gif

Please keep us posted!


 

Balasubramaniam L.  Identity Verified
India
Local time: 19:52
English to Hindi
+ ...
The only reason I can think of for this... May 21, 2013

... is that they are going to get you to translate highly confidential stuff or secret stuff (such as military plans) and are paranoid of spies looking over your shoulder or through your window or through a telescope or a satellite surveillance system at your computer screen and pinching their stuff.

Otherwise, this is the most outlandish request I have ever heard of in my entire career.

If the former is the case, then here is your opportunity to charge them a hefty premium on your rates for providing a "secure" translation environment for their work.

[2013-05-21 16:12 GMT पर संपादन हुआ]


 

Niina Lahokoski  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 17:22
Member (2008)
English to Finnish
+ ...
The oddest request yet May 21, 2013

Never has it occurred to me that someone could require information like that from a freelance translator. For me it sounds excessive, and I see no reason for it whatsoever. Even if it was for a specific, ultra-secret, hush-hush project requiring high security measures etc., in which case it would indeed be best to do the project in-house in a closed office, instead of sending it to freelancers by normal email, or at best FTP - as they probably would.

What if you move house, would you have to provide the same again for the new place?


 

nrichy (X)
France
Local time: 16:22
French to Dutch
+ ...
A much simplier explanation May 21, 2013

Maybe that they have to ensure to their social security or insurance officers that employees who are working at home are safely and comfortably installed (enough space, secure 220/230 V wall sockets, daylight coming from the right, ergonomic workplace, etc.), and that raptisi is considered being an employee.

 

Kevin Fulton  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 10:22
German to English
Boilerplate request May 21, 2013

I've done work for various small companies engaged in international commerce which have provided me with questionnaires regarding the security of my office. When I raised this issue with my contacts, they said that all vendors have to provide this information, even single-shingle suppliers like myself. I had to identify redundant systems and locations (spare bedroom, AKA Office #2), location of backup media (my freezer, AKA cold storage facility) as well as anyone who might come into contact with my data on a regular basis (physician GF, AKA Quality Control Officer). One company required me to agree to an inspection, but the guys at the company said they had never heard of any site visits for that purpose.

It's possible that the translation agency has a contract with a defense or security company which requires this of all subcontractors. It's annoying, but the likelihood of anyone using this information is minimal.


 

Gudrun Wolfrath  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 16:22
English to German
+ ...
You may want to add May 21, 2013

your dental records as well.

Gudrun


 

Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 15:22
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
Editor's change required May 21, 2013

raptisi wrote:
I thought it myself as being strange, although the agency in question is respectable and established. They claim it as part of some kind of security procedure, odd though!


...the agency in question was respectable...


A perfectly ridiculous requirement, IMO. Please let us know if they give any better reasons than "security procedure". Whose "security"? Certainly not yours!


Edited to add: was this matter raised approximately 7 weeks ago? Around 1st April?

[Edited at 2013-05-21 17:01 GMT]


 

Karen Stokes  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:22
Member (2003)
French to English
Employed versus freelance May 21, 2013

The only time I've come across something similar is when someone who is employed by a company does some of their working hours at home and the company is then under an obligation to check that their working conditions still comply with health and safety regulations. I can only think they may be confusing that situation with your position as a freelancer.

 

Jane Proctor  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 16:22
French to English
Karen, let's hope so, but May 21, 2013

the clandestine, conspiracy, espionage, or even April Fool's theories are all so much more enjoyableicon_razz.gif

 
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