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Reduced rates for interpreting. Second year in a row.
Thread poster: Rad Graban

Rad Graban  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 03:52
English to Slovak
+ ...
Jun 4, 2010

Dear Linguist,

We are entering a particularly difficult time for public sector suppliers and as the majority of our interpreting business is public sector driven, "therobbingbastard" must act swiftly to ensure there is no decrease in minutes of telephone interpreting we are servicing.

We are working towards a sustainable business model that can operate successfully throughout a public sector recession whilst at the same time maintaining service levels, quality and our commitment to our clients. The reduction will come predominantly from technology savings and lowering our fixed overheads, however we also need to reduce the rate we pay our interpreters to 21p per minute, paid to the nearest second, effective from the 12th of June.

Due to our swift response to economic pressures we foresee that we will sustain the amount of minutes that we send to you and have budgeted for an increase in minutes over the next 12 months.

"therobbingbastard" would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your ongoing support and with the launch of our US based telephone interpreting operation we hope to see an increase in minutes that we pass to our suppliers to service.

With kind regards,

Is it just me missing the point and/or I don't understand English, or it really says "we expect you to work more for less money"? This agency seems to be really taking the advantage of being the major supplier of translation/interpreting services for UK government, and I'm wondering if the government is aware of that. There is not a week without an article in newspapers about how much are authorities spending on these services, but is the government aware that it is making rich just somebody who won the contract? I very much doubt that the government's reduced its rate they pay to its provider. I really find it sickening.

[Edited at 2010-06-04 17:12 GMT]

P.S. Edited after Tom's comment about "its/it's". Thanks Tom. Just really angry.

[Edited at 2010-06-04 17:28 GMT]


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Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 03:52
Member (2008)
Italian to English
No Jun 4, 2010

It isn't possible to work more for less money.

For less money you can:

(a) not accept the work
(b) work faster so that you earn the same (but there is a physical limit to how far this can go)
(c) work with less care
(d) give precedence to better-paid work and let the worse-paid work run slowly, to a much later deadline.


What you CANNOT do is work just as well as you were working before, for less money.

Agencies, please note: it's up to you to make better deals with your clients - if you want to deliver high-quality translations to tight deadlines.

(BTW in many instances in your post "it's" should be "its").

[Edited at 2010-06-04 17:24 GMT]


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Charlie Bavington  Identity Verified
Local time: 03:52
French to English
I was thinking about you the other day Jun 4, 2010

True, I was. I should've emailed
I heard something about spending on interpreting being a target. You know we (the collective population of the UK) have got to suck up 6 billion quid in cuts this financial year. I was gonna advise you to diversify, and sharpish.

Rad Graban wrote:

I very much doubt that the government's reduced its rate they pay to its provider.


While I do not wish to appear to support any robbing bastard anywhere, it is not inconceivable that they have. In these days of open government, I genuinely think with a bit of effort, you could probably find out. Get your nearest Lib Dem on the case.


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Giuseppina Gatta, MA (Hons)
Member (2005)
English to Italian
+ ...
I know who they are Jun 4, 2010

They offered me the stratospheric rate of 0.3USD per minute of telephone interpreting. I have never accepted to work with them.

[Modificato alle 2010-06-04 18:30 GMT]


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Rad Graban  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 03:52
English to Slovak
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks, Charlie. Jun 4, 2010

Charlie Bavington wrote:
While I do not wish to appear to support any robbing bastard anywhere, it is not inconceivable that they have. In these days of open government, I genuinely think with a bit of effort, you could probably find out. Get your nearest Lib Dem on the case.


Thank you, Charlie. Will do just that and I also have a little bit more cunning plan.


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Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 04:52
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
Shorter minutes? Jun 4, 2010

Rad Graban wrote:
...however we also need to reduce the rate we pay our interpreters to 21p per minute, paid to the nearest second, effective from the 12th of June.


Do these new minutes take less time to interpret as well?


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Charlie Bavington  Identity Verified
Local time: 03:52
French to English
Bright ideas no. 59 Jun 4, 2010

They should keep the rates the same, and tell people to speak faster.

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Rad Graban  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 03:52
English to Slovak
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Brilliant Jun 4, 2010

Charlie Bavington wrote:
They should keep the rates the same, and tell people to speak faster.


You've never heard me talking, Charlie. I speak at the speed of at least £1.20 a minute.


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Giuseppina Gatta, MA (Hons)
Member (2005)
English to Italian
+ ...
Another bright idea Jun 4, 2010

Charlie Bavington wrote:

They should keep the rates the same, and tell people to speak faster.


Actually, it should be the contrary: Whoever works with them, should start speaking at a considerably slower pace...


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Rad Graban  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 03:52
English to Slovak
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
I strongly object to moving my thread. Jun 4, 2010

Astrid,

I am trying to discuss "money matters" here and not "the art/issues of interpreting".


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MMFORREST  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 03:52
Romanian to English
+ ...
Got the same last night! Jun 5, 2010

Rad Graban wrote:


Is it just me missing the point and/or I don't understand English, or it really says "we expect you to work more for less money"? This agency seems to be really taking the advantage of being the major supplier of translation/interpreting services for UK government, and I'm wondering if the government is aware of that. There is not a week without an article in newspapers about how much are authorities spending on these services, but is the government aware that it is making rich just somebody who won the contract? I very much doubt that the government's reduced its rate they pay to its provider. I really find it sickening.

[Edited at 2010-06-04 17:12 GMT]

P.S. Edited after Tom's comment about "its/it's". Thanks Tom. Just really angry.

[Edited at 2010-06-04 17:28 GMT]


I got the same notification that ruined my evening last night and I was going to write about it in the forum, but I couldn't have named them as well as you did, Rad!
Yes, this is capitalism at its worse. I reckon if it continues to go on like this they'll soon start putting people in work houses again!!!!!

My first impulse was and still is to work less for them as they always paid me a bit over half of what they American agencies pay me. This is why I sometimes log in but not daily with them and sometimes I accept calls when not logged in, but not all calls.
I somehow do not think that they are going to get good interpreters for the price they are offering. Yesterday I took a call that was started with another interpreter before they got disconnected and the claimant said she had been in the UK for three weeks yet the adviser asked if it was three YEARS, that how she got the info relayed by the previous interpreter. I've never come across this sort of thing before! Should we worry?

I like the fact that we still have to provide the same high level of quality, don't you all?

Anyway, let's hope that we'll find better agencies that will respect our work!


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Martin Stranak  Identity Verified
Czech Republic
Local time: 04:52
Member (2009)
English to Czech
+ ...
In this respect... Jun 5, 2010

...one might even wonder, whether the interpreter has to finish the call, if the advisor or the Limited English Speaker fail to respect the intrerpreter as a person providing service and start considering the interpreter as some parrot on the line to repeat the message, strinving to get it across to the person who doesń t actually want to hear it and realize the facts given... Is such a job worth the "low buck"?

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Susanna Garcia  Identity Verified
Local time: 03:52
Italian to English
+ ...
Cunning plan Jun 6, 2010

Rad Graban wrote:

Charlie Bavington wrote:
While I do not wish to appear to support any robbing bastard anywhere, it is not inconceivable that they have. In these days of open government, I genuinely think with a bit of effort, you could probably find out. Get your nearest Lib Dem on the case.


Thank you, Charlie. Will do just that and I also have a little bit more cunning plan.


Does it involve a turnip by any chance?


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Kaiya J. Diannen  Identity Verified
Australia
Member (2008)
German to English
Baldrick...! Jun 6, 2010

Susanna Garcia wrote: ... cunning plan ...

Does it involve a turnip by any chance?


!!!ROFL/LMAO!!!


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Susanna Garcia  Identity Verified
Local time: 03:52
Italian to English
+ ...
Baldrick Jun 6, 2010

Janet Rubin wrote:

Susanna Garcia wrote: ... cunning plan ...

Does it involve a turnip by any chance?


!!!ROFL/LMAO!!!



Who else!!! Apologies for straying but Rad started it!
Suzi


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