What steps to take after first translation?
Thread poster: Todd Jackson
Todd Jackson  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:25
Member (2010)
Russian to English
Jan 29, 2010

Hi,

I just finished my first translation on Proz and am ready to send it to the client. I've set up a Paypal account. I'm not sure how the process works from here though. What are the next steps? Do I send the translation, then wait for confirmation of the payment or vice versa? Do I need to send the client a Proz invoice or is that optional? How do I ensure that the job will be registered on my profile? Is there anything else I need to do that I might not be aware of? Your assistance will be very much appreciated.

Thanks!

Todd


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Stanislaw Czech, MCIL  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 05:25
Member (2006)
English to Polish
+ ...
Hi Todd Jan 29, 2010

Unless something else was agreed in the first place normally client expects to receive an invoice (after all your client most likely runs a business and needs confirmation of all business expenses). You can use invoicing tool provided by Proz.com or just make one in Word.
Once you have sent the invoice you wait for the payment and try to find the second job, etc....

Good luck


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xxxmediamatrix
Local time: 01:25
Spanish to English
+ ...
Vice-versa? - If only... Jan 29, 2010

Todd Jackson wrote:
... Do I send the translation, then wait for confirmation of the payment or vice versa?


If we are to believe stuff we read regularly in this forum, it works like this: you send the translation, with some kind of demand for payment - invoice or whatever - and then you wait a few months for the payment to arrive ... or not as the case may be.

If you wait for payment before sending the finished job you'll miss your client's precious deadline and that's one sure way to ensure you'll never get any repeat business from them.

Todd Jackson then asked:
How do I ensure that the job will be registered on my profile?


AFAIK there's only one way (always assuming you have a good reason for mentioning it in your profile...): DIY

MediaMatrix

[Edited at 2010-01-29 23:27 GMT]


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Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 21:25
English to German
+ ...
Let's see... Jan 30, 2010

Say, you just ordered a car, a piece of furniture or you hired an attorney. What do expect them to do? To send you an invoice, of course, so they can pay you.

You don't have to send an invoice through Proz.com. Proz.com is not an agency. Set up your own stationery with all your contact data, job number, date, and banking information. Set up proper bookkeeping. You are a business now, nobody's employee.

Please read some information about how to run a small business. Tax season is coming up, and you don't want to encounter any nasty surprises, right?


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Armand C.  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 06:25
German to English
+ ...
Hi Todd, Jan 30, 2010

I just finished my first translation on Proz and am ready to send it to the client. I've set up a Paypal account. I'm not sure how the process works from here though. What are the next steps? Do I send the translation, then wait for confirmation of the payment or vice versa?


That would be the normal flow, yes.

Virtually the only situation where you get (some) money first is when you negotiated an advance with the client. I take it, this isn't your case.

Do I need to send the client a Proz invoice or is that optional?

NOT sending an invoice would qualify as tax evasion, I suppose. Like Stanislaw said, your client runs a business and expects an invoice. And you also run a business.

As for the subject of "Proz invoice", I suspect you (and maybe Nicole too) are making a confusion.

Using the invoicing system offered by Proz, it's still your invoice. It has your business name and whatever other details you configure for it. You can find more details here: http://www.proz.com/faq/invoicing

As a personal note, I'm very comfortable with the Proz invoicing system. It allows me to track invoices (and payments) without any headaches. It allows exporting the invoices in PDF or HTML format, in addition to printing and mailing them, and it has a comfy button so the client can insert the sum due and pay directly via PayPal or MoneyBookers. It also isn't restricted to clients who have a ProZ profile--you can invoice anyone who has an e-mail address.

Besides, paper stationary is kinda outdated, especially when you work via internet. Some countries still require you to send a printed and signed invoice to clients. I don't suppose this is the case of the US, however...

The only real problems might arise due to the accounting system you're using. That depends on local regulations and your fiscal regime more than anything else. There are accounting programs, but they're generally either expensive or difficult to work with. Depending, again, on your situation you might want to consider getting an accountant. As a very minimum, take Nicole's advice: read some on the subject, to avoid nasty surprises; I hear your IRS doesn't take "I didn't know" as a valid excuse...

How do I ensure that the job will be registered on my profile?

There's no automatic system, if that's what you mean. Listing it on your profile... you could do that, but I don't really see the point. You can request a "WWA" (Willingness to Work Again) entry from the client. See more about that here: http://www.proz.com/post/367572

Is there anything else I need to do that I might not be aware of?

Add some details to your profile... But you're well aware of that
I hear some potential clients do pay attention to your KudoZ points... not too sure what to make of that.

EDIT: I just remembered the KudoZ serve some purpose: how many you have determines your position in the on-site translators' directory. This is almost insulting, if you ask me, but that's how it works for the moment.

--Armand

[Edited at 2010-01-30 06:13 GMT]


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Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 21:25
English to German
+ ...
No confusion on my side Jan 30, 2010

Armand C. wrote:

As for the subject of "Proz invoice", I suspect you (and maybe Nicole too) are making a confusion.



Using the Proz.com invoice system is optional.

Having your own letterhead has nothing to do with paper invoices, BTW. As a matter of fact, as a business you are required to have a letterhead that states your physical adress and contact data. Again, it has nothing to do with pre-printed stationery.


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Armand C.  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 06:25
German to English
+ ...
I wonder... Jan 30, 2010

Nicole Schnell wrote:

Armand C. wrote:

As for the subject of "Proz invoice", I suspect you (and maybe Nicole too) are making a confusion.



Using the Proz.com invoice system is optional.

Having your own letterhead has nothing to do with paper invoices, BTW. As a matter of fact, as a business you are required to have a letterhead that states your physical adress and contact data. Again, it has nothing to do with pre-printed stationery.


Of course it's optional. And I'm well aware what has to be on an invoice and what hasn't got any place there. But I still don't get it where you see a problem.

You can very well put your name, address, phone, VAT ID and logo, as well as whatever additional notes you want, on the letterhead -- just as you would with an invoice generated by an accounting software or even scribbled together in Word.

It has nothing whatsoever on it to link it to proz.com, except you're using this site to generate and track the invoice (the latter even more optional than the first, so to say).

Have you actually tried to configure what you need in the invoicing system settings? I'm sorry if I seem offensive, but you sound like you didn't even as much as look at it.

--Armand


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Laurent KRAULAND  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 06:25
French to German
+ ...
Information on third-party server Jan 30, 2010

Armand C. wrote:

It has nothing whatsoever on it to link it to proz.com, except you're using this site to generate and track the invoice (the latter even more optional than the first, so to say).

Have you actually tried to configure what you need in the invoicing system settings? I'm sorry if I seem offensive, but you sound like you didn't even as much as look at it.

--Armand


I think that some colleagues have some misgivings using such features (be it on ProZ or elsewhere) because information is stored on a third-party server.


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Armand C.  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 06:25
German to English
+ ...
Yes, but... Jan 30, 2010

ScottishWildCat wrote:

I think that some colleagues have some misgivings using such features (be it on ProZ or elsewhere) because information is stored on a third-party server.

I totally agree. But it's a different problem.

Incidentally, I don't have much of a problem with that. Not more than, say, that virtually all emails are stored on 3rd party systems, almost all websites are on 3rd party systems, and that every byte of data you transmit and get from the internet gets through dozens of 3rd party systems. These are details that people generally don't even take time to think about--or don't know about.

--Armand


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Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 21:25
English to German
+ ...
Third-party server - that indeed is the point. Jan 30, 2010

Thanks, ScottishWildCat!

ScottishWildCat wrote:


I think that some colleagues have some misgivings using such features (be it on ProZ or elsewhere) because information is stored on a third-party server.



So, Armand, I have not taken a look at this feature. Our company's invoicing system has been established many years ago and works just beautifully.

To me, it seemed that the original poster considered the Proz.com invoicing system the sole option because the job came through Proz.com. Which of course is not correct.


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Armand C.  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 06:25
German to English
+ ...
Well Jan 30, 2010

So, Armand, I have not taken a look at this feature.

Yes, that was obvious... Well, nevermind

Our company's invoicing system has been established many years ago and works just beautifully.

You're lucky, from this point of view. I mean it. I don't have a "company's system" at the moment, much less a decent one. And I've had to do with some atrocious bloatware disguised as accounting software...

To me, it seemed that the original poster considered the Proz.com invoicing system the sole option because the job came through Proz.com. Which of course is not correct.

I never said otherwise. I only said I use it because I find it comfortable.

As for it being 3rd party. I don't have energy to spend on being paranoid about that. In the end they have some legal obligations with respect to privacy. And, as I said, every internet access you make involved 3rd parties. I'd be more worried about, say, the servers of Paypal or my bank to be cracked. That would be a real problem.

--Armand

[Edited at 2010-01-30 07:15 GMT]


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Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 21:25
English to German
+ ...
Call me a dinosaur... :-) Jan 30, 2010

Armand C. wrote:

Yes, that was obvious... Well, nevermind




I do prefer periodic invoicing on decent stationery over software-generated bills. We have created our Coporate Design many years ago, so the stationery includes letter, fax forms, envelopes, contracts, POs, business cards and what not. Whatever we send comes with scanned signatures. Call me crazy, it leaves a darn good impression and we receive a lot of compliments.

He, he... now I will make you roll on the floor with mirth: My invoices are written in InDesign. QuarkXPress optional. And sent as PDF.


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Laurent KRAULAND  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 06:25
French to German
+ ...
Options Jan 30, 2010

Nicole Schnell wrote:
He, he... now I will make you roll on the floor with mirth: My invoices are written in InDesign. QuarkXPress optional. And sent as PDF.

Mine are written in iWork Pages (I started customizing by the beginning of this year, btw) with my logo and some nice layout based on a template; did not think about the signature so far, but thanks for the hint, Nicole. And of course, my invoices are sent as PDFs.

For those who really want a free, no-hassle, lightweight, somewhat customizable and efficient invoicing software (Windows, Mac or Linux), there still is Express Invoice available...


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Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 21:25
English to German
+ ...
Traditionalism Jan 30, 2010

Armand C. wrote:
Besides, paper stationary is kinda outdated, especially when you work via internet. Some countries still require you to send a printed and signed invoice to clients. I don't suppose this is the case of the US, however...



Sorry, Armand.

We are traditionalists. Especially in our business culture - be it hierarchy, business manners, etiquette, or: proper stationery. This is a country, where e.g. wedding invitations at times are more involved than a standard direct marketing campaign.

The original poster lives in the US.


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Todd Jackson  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:25
Member (2010)
Russian to English
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you Jan 30, 2010

Thank you all for your responses! You've given me some very valuable advice and I will definitely take it all into consideration as I move forward with my (very young) freelancing career. It's great to have a forum like this to discuss such issues.

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