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That moment when you missed a job offer email
Thread poster: Aditya Ikhsan Prasiddha

Aditya Ikhsan Prasiddha  Identity Verified
Indonesia
Local time: 08:37
Member (2012)
English to Indonesian
Feb 24, 2014

Don't you just want to bang your head against the wall when you miss a big job opportunity because you're late in replying the email? Once there was a problem with my email app, somehow it wasn't pushing new emails. Another time was yesterday, I was eating so I couldn't check my email for 30 minutes and it cost me $1.000. I actually just wanted to vent, but if you want to share your experience you're very welcome

[Edited at 2014-02-24 01:06 GMT]

[Edited at 2014-02-24 01:07 GMT]

[Edited at 2014-02-24 01:49 GMT]


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Ildiko Santana  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 18:37
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...

MODERATOR
no gain, no pain Feb 24, 2014

No, I don't think you should bang your head against the wall over this. The way I see it, if it is not me who receives a particular job, for whatever reason, then that job was not meant to be mine to begin with. What's done is done; nothing constructive will come out of feeling regret or wondering about what if... Since you never did the job, it did not "cost you" $1000, you lost nothing. And lastly, if a client has no more than 30 minutes to wait for quotes and decide who they want to hire, I probably wouldn't want to work for them anyway. A worthy request for quote is not a reverse auction at a horse trading house (no offense to auctioneers!), this is a serious profession with skilled professionals. Speed should never be the deciding factor, in my opinion; neither in outsourcing, nor in delivery.
So, I am happy for you that you had a nice meal and now you're available for a much better opportunity that will surely arise soon. : )

[Edited at 2014-02-24 04:34 GMT]


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Daniel1223
United States
Local time: 18:37
Japanese to English
+ ...
You win some and lose some! Feb 24, 2014

There's a yinyang of luck in every profession and a translator is no exception.
Some days you'll get some nice offers and others will be others.
Your experience has happened to me before.
All you can do is smile and let it go. No need to dwell on the past.


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Little Woods  Identity Verified
Vietnam
Member
English to Vietnamese
I knew how you felt and even worse Feb 24, 2014

Lately I have been experience the same thing repeatedly. Job offers came and in less than half an hour when I was away in the kitchen or doing some chores. It vanished. I used Gmail notifier but now is is discontinued, I dont know what to use. Their Gmail notification only works when you have the gmail open in the window, which is something I often miss.

Much worse is when I and another translator I know bid for the same job. He was offered the job but in reality I was the one who completed that job in the end without the agency knowing. He was too busy but didn't want a money making chance to slip away.


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Mohammad Renaldi Diponegoro  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:37
Member (2010)
English to Indonesian
Been there, done that Feb 24, 2014

Well, I believe there's nothing you can do other than to grit your teeth and move on. I agree with Ildiko (Hi Ildiko, we met quite often in TWB); a professional relationship is mutual.

At the end of the day, you will realize that there are always long-term clients that will wait for your response, not because you offer the lowest rate or the fastest response. But because you offer the quality of work, and those clients who value your work's quality are the best clients for you. Maintain them and don't ever let them go.


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Jack Doughty  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 02:37
Member (2000)
Russian to English
+ ...
mail.com Feb 24, 2014

To Little Woods: there are other web-based emails which have notifiers. I recommend mail.com. It has other useful features such as being able to clone another email address, and saving emails sent to that address.

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Little Woods  Identity Verified
Vietnam
Member
English to Vietnamese
Thank you Jack! Feb 24, 2014

Thank you for your recommendation, I would consider that mail.com. I also just found an alternative to Gmail notification. Hope it works for me.

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Gudrun Wolfrath  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 03:37
English to German
+ ...
Don't worry. Feb 24, 2014

Maybe an even better translation is waiting for you just around the corner, one you would have missed when doing this one.

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jyuan_us  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 21:37
Member (2005)
English to Chinese
+ ...
A job that is closed in less than 30 minutes could be part of crowd sourcing Feb 24, 2014

Little Woods wrote:

Lately I have been experience the same thing repeatedly. Job offers came and in less than half an hour when I was away in the kitchen or doing some chores. It vanished. I used Gmail notifier but now is is discontinued, I dont know what to use. Their Gmail notification only works when you have the gmail open in the window, which is something I often miss.

Much worse is when I and another translator I know bid for the same job. He was offered the job but in reality I was the one who completed that job in the end without the agency knowing. He was too busy but didn't want a money making chance to slip away.


This means that they sent hundreds of translators in one mass email and whoever acts the first gets the job. Even if you reply within 2 minutes, the job might have already gone.


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Łukasz Gos-Furmankiewicz  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 03:37
English to Polish
+ ...
... Feb 24, 2014

I know the feeling. Resist the temptation to show strong feelings of regret, though, as that could show you to be needy and shoot you in the foot regarding rates.

Think about using some sort of system combining e-mail filtering and notification (e.g. on your phone, via a text message), to the effect of notifying you when e-mails suspected of being job offers arrive.

Also, missing work coming in the morning tends to be the natural result of working into night hours. This is perhaps another reason to charge rush fees and night fees. However, your bound to miss some if your current and prospective clients come from different time zones.

Don't despair. A while ago I missed what was simply a large order from an agency and a little while later got contacted by a lawyer I knew personally with a direct-client request (if you don't include the law firm, that is) for much, much better rates. And the lawyer was the author of the contract being translated, as well as being capable of serving as a second pair of eyes, so the circumstances were very comfortable other than the rush. Plus room for more of the same. Had I not missed the agency order (by a matter of hours, really), I would probably have missed the direct-client deal.

Finally, you can't help how fast agencies move. As your relationship with your favourite PM's improves and becomes closer, you can convince them to drop you a call whenever you'd be their first choice but they have little time to wait.

[Edited at 2014-02-24 11:15 GMT]


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Andrej Fric  Identity Verified
Slovenia
Local time: 03:37
Member (2011)
German to Slovenian
+ ...
Don't bother, if you didn't get this job Feb 24, 2014

I declined to work with many outsourcers, who had extremely narrow window to accept their orders. I don't want to be pushed and if they need their translation or offer or project acceptance in less than an hour, they are doing something wrong.
A year ago I had fine cooperation with apparently excellent company, but after few months they had only small jobs (5-100 words) for me, they didn't accept my minimum fee and I couldn't get their orders, because someone (my fellow translator) was always faster than me. Once I even replied within 1 minute after their e-mail and I was too late, job already taken. Well, that doesn't sound as a good practice for me, so I did not accept any work of them anymore.
It is not only about work and income, it is also about correct relation between outsourcer and provider. And that is, what counts, imho.

[Edited at 2014-02-24 11:50 GMT]


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LEXpert  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 20:37
Member (2008)
Croatian to English
+ ...
Looking at it the right way Feb 24, 2014

1) There is always another, almost always better job in the pipeline, which you are now free to accept.
2) Don't ask yourself how valuable the job was, but how profitable. Jobs that pay $1000 but take a week's worth of strenuous man hours or more are a dime a dozen. Now, if it's a $1000 job you could have done in a couple of days...

Even then, it rarely happens with regular clients. They are very nice and usually give me ample time respond and/or follow up if they don't hear from me for some reason. Then again, I almost always carry my smartphone with me, even around the house (or at least keep it within earshot), so I usually don't miss e-mails.




[Edited at 2014-02-24 14:44 GMT]


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LegalTransform  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 21:37
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
+ ...
That moment when you missed a job offer email Feb 24, 2014

Even worse than missing a job while you are away from your desk is when you are at your computer working and get a job notification immediately. You stop what you are doing, open the file to look at the contents, see what the formatting is like, read a few pages to make sure it is something you can understand and thus translate, maybe research the company, court case, situation, etc. on Google a bit, calculate how long it will take you to complete the project or if you can finish it by the requested deadline, determine how much you want to charge based on the project, compose an e-mail, all as quickly as you possibly can, press send, and then you get the message, sorry this job has already been assigned. My only explanation is that people just blindly accept jobs without looking at them.

But why should I be surprised. It's only the number of words that matter, right? /s

[Edited at 2014-02-24 14:28 GMT]


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Aditya Ikhsan Prasiddha  Identity Verified
Indonesia
Local time: 08:37
Member (2012)
English to Indonesian
TOPIC STARTER
Wow Feb 25, 2014

Whoa, you have some really wise words that put things in perspective. I can't thank you enough! It's time to move on for me now, in fact, I'm pretty much drowned in jobs for the next two days!

[Edited at 2014-02-25 01:55 GMT]


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Łukasz Gos-Furmankiewicz  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 03:37
English to Polish
+ ...
Moar Feb 26, 2014

Rudolf's post made me think about something else. Learn to enjoy your free time when you have it, i.e. when it comes, as opposed to when you'd like to have some. Improvise a holiday. Go to the cinema. Wine and dine your special lady. Take a long stroll through the park. Have some icecream. Or have a beer (or cognac, if you feel more like it). Or just read a book or play computer games. Whatever floats your boat. But make use of the unexpected free time, make sure it's quality time. Life's short.

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