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3 biggest painpoints in the translation business?
Thread poster: Monika Konopka

Monika Konopka
Poland
Local time: 22:03
English to Polish
Oct 14, 2013

Hi All,
What do you consider some of the biggest painpoints in your translation business?
Things that you hate doing but have to do?
Things that cost you too much time that could be spent translating?

Would it be:
- invoicing?
- tracking your time?
- taxes?
- email handling?
- anything else?

For me its invoicing!!
Share your thoughts..

Monika


 

Martina Fink  Identity Verified
New Zealand
Local time: 08:03
German to English
Chasing payments Oct 14, 2013

Chasing late payments is a pain!

 

Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 21:03
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
How can invoicing be a pain? Oct 14, 2013

I love preparing and sending invoices. It doesn't take long and it's the part of the process that ensures I'll get paid for my work.

I hate chasing clients. Especially for payment as that's embarrassing or irritating, but also chasing promised work, answers to questions, confirmation of delivery, etc.


 

Josephine Cassar  Identity Verified
Local time: 22:03
Member (2012)
Italian to English
+ ...
Invoicing is not a pain Oct 14, 2013

Not in itself. It is chasing payments, almost seems like begging for what is your right. You respect deadlines but some agencies do not and come up with absurd excuses. another thing that I hat is when you are sent texts which have typos or legal texts/contracts with written words that you do not exactly recognise and agency expects you to be able to recognise-names of streets in the foreign language you are translating from, numbers- all of which must be put down without mistakes. Do they expect us to know every street too? Another thing that I hate is being contacted, asked for rates, CV etc, and then not hearing from the particular agency, or told CV looks great and asked for references, then when I give them, get an answer "Great", then no more emails. Sounds almost rude to me.

[Edited at 2013-10-14 15:20 GMT]


 

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 21:03
Member (2008)
Italian to English
PDFs and chasing Oct 14, 2013

1. Converting PDFs to Word files.
2. Persuading non-payers that they really ought to pay me because if they don't, there'll be trouble.

[Edited at 2013-10-14 15:51 GMT]


 

Monika Konopka
Poland
Local time: 22:03
English to Polish
TOPIC STARTER
Looks like I am really lucky with payments... Oct 14, 2013

I work mainly with TransPerfect and Corporate Translations.
They pay sharp on time every time...

Looks like I am really lucky here.
Have you guys tried to automate your payment chasing i.e. some automated emails etc?

Monika


 

Anna Martin  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 22:03
Hungarian to Spanish
+ ...
Other Oct 14, 2013

Overnight fights with Trados and its mysterious "missing dependency files".

 
Post removed: This post was hidden by a moderator or staff member because it was not in line with site rule

Teresa Borges
Portugal
Local time: 21:03
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
3 biggest painpoints Oct 14, 2013

1. Chasing payments!
2. Chasing payments!!
3. Chasing payments!!!

I do hate dealing with clients that don't pay, but, Like Sheila, I love preparing and sending invoices...


 

Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 13:03
English to German
+ ...
The time zones Oct 14, 2013

Being located at the US West Coast can be a pain in neck when your clients are spread all over the US and Europe. The first emails from Europe arrive around midnight, at 5 in the morning Pacific Time the East Coast is already fresh and rested and wishes to communicate.

 

Alex Lago  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 22:03
Member (2009)
English to Spanish
+ ...
My 3 Oct 14, 2013

1.- Dealing with clients who have had their translation proofread by someone in the office that speaks a bit of the language, I hate having to explain things like why you sell tickets but you have a ticket sale (not tickets sale)
2.- Chasing payments
2.- Translating non-editable PDFs


 

Shai Navé  Identity Verified
Israel
Local time: 23:03
Member
English to Hebrew
+ ...
Dealing with unprofessionals Oct 14, 2013

That about sums it up.
The inner-working of the translation process has its hardship of course, but I wouldn't consider it to be a pain per se.
The administrative work, although some love it more than others, cannot be classified as a pain either in my opinion because it is (a vital) part of offering a commercial service.

Dealing with unprofessional (or dishonest) entities is the ultimate pain because it manifests itself as various professional and administrative issues (some were already described in this discussions) that tend to end up being time and energy drains, and to me that is the worst.


 

Monika Konopka
Poland
Local time: 22:03
English to Polish
TOPIC STARTER
Chasing payments still the winner :) Oct 14, 2013

Re-iterating the question...
Would automated email reminder/dunning letters help?

Let's say you have some software where you enter pending payment amounts and it generates email notifications:
* 1 day before the due date
* then every week until 3 months overdue
* then every day

or whatever you want...

and the notification contains the link to your invoice and a "pay now" button that allows them to pay straight to your PayPal account.

Just thinking out loud here..
Would it help?

Monika


 

Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 13:03
English to German
+ ...
Spamming the client Oct 14, 2013

mkonopka wrote:

Would automated email reminder/dunning letters help?

Let's say you have some software where you enter pending payment amounts and it generates email notifications:
* 1 day before the due date
* then every week until 3 months overdue
* then every day


A while ago I saw on TV how collection agencies work - they showed a previously unemployed couple, probably not qualified for any other occupation, who had two PCs in the corner of their bedroom and spent their day sending automated phone calls to debtors to annoy and to terrorize them. I don't think I would ever sink to this level.

Also: Sending a reminder before due date is out of the question. Successful business cooperation is based on mutual respect.

A simple phone call works wonders.


 

Monika Konopka
Poland
Local time: 22:03
English to Polish
TOPIC STARTER
Payments reminder software Oct 14, 2013

"1 day before" was just an example.

You could still stay in full control and set the timing and verbiage of reminders.

Seems that calling is not easy for everyone.
Just trying to brainstorm some ideas here.

Other thoughts?

Monika


 
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