Pricing for translation of an updated text
Thread poster: maxandrei
Jun 12, 2012

Hello,

I have been asked to translate an updated version of a text that I translated two years ago.

The client provided me with my original translation, and with the updated version of the text in the base language (which is about 75% the same, with some additions and changes).

This is the first time I've received such a request and am wondering if I should still quote this per the word count in the target language, even though most of the text is already translated.

Thanks in advance for your help!

Regards,


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Henry Hinds  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 16:27
English to Spanish
+ ...
Time Jun 12, 2012

Charge by time, then. In addition to translation you will have to track the new original with the old translation and make additions, deletions, etc. Just charge what you like to make by the hour.

As you go along in your career, hopefully you will get more work of this kind. I know I do. This means you have a good client.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Phil Hand  Identity Verified
China
Local time: 07:27
Chinese to English
One of the benefits of CAT Jun 13, 2012

Is that this question becomes very easy. If you have a CAT tool now, consider putting this document into your TM, so that next time it comes around you can see instantly how much work it is.

Otherwise - you've said yourself it's 75% the same. If your client wants a quote, then why not quote for 25% of the text? You have Word, use the compare function to show up the differences between the old and new texts, and just translate the changes.

Alternatively, you could charge for proofreading (to find the differences) and translation (of the updated parts), probably adding up to about 50% of the cost of translating the whole thing.


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Vladimír Hoffman  Identity Verified
Slovakia
Local time: 00:27
Member (2009)
English to Slovak
+ ...
I often have to deal Jun 13, 2012

with such requirements and in the case of my own older texts, I charge only for changes, provided that the old text was ordered to be made in Trados (I translate all texts in Trados, but not all clients require it). If it is case of updated old text that wasn't ordered to be made in Trados and changes are highlighted, I still charge only for the changes. If the changes are not highlighted and my old text was not ordered to be made in Trados (your case), then I provide some rebate, but charge for entire text. Level of the rebate depends on volume of needed work, but I would not give higher rebate than 25%.

The last case is a text made by someone other, in which, allegedly, only small changes were made and those changes are not highlighted. In such cases I tend (or at least try) to explain to a client that familiarization with unknown text and finding changes is so time-consuming and exhausting that full rate should be paid.


maxandrei wrote:

Hello,

I have been asked to translate an updated version of a text that I translated two years ago.

The client provided me with my original translation, and with the updated version of the text in the base language (which is about 75% the same, with some additions and changes).

This is the first time I've received such a request and am wondering if I should still quote this per the word count in the target language, even though most of the text is already translated.

Thanks in advance for your help!

Regards,


[Edited at 2012-06-13 06:44 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Vladimír Hoffman  Identity Verified
Slovakia
Local time: 00:27
Member (2009)
English to Slovak
+ ...
The changes can be of type Jun 13, 2012

that one word changed in a sentence shall mean a need to re-stylize entire sentence. Nothing close to translating fluent text of the same volume, even with Word compare function. I agree with rebate, but not idfentical with level of similarity.


Phil Hand wrote:

Otherwise - you've said yourself it's 75% the same. If your client wants a quote, then why not quote for 25% of the text? You have Word, use the compare function to show up the differences between the old and new texts, and just translate the changes.



Direct link Reply with quote
 
hourly Jun 13, 2012

I do this very often since I have been working on one particular project since 2006. Obviously, my client is satisfied with my work and conditions.

No matter what or how you do it, with or without CAT, it takes time - so charge for that. It also makes the billing easier, since you don't have to figure out what was translated, what was proofread, etc.

When I have a large chunk of text to translate, I calculate how much that would be at translating rates and charge whichever (hourly/per word) is less, but this is my little way of saying thank you to a good client. On the other hand, the difference is usually so minimal that it isn't worth the billing effort, which means both rates are basically equal - and this is what I want. In short, I want to earn the same whether I bill hourly or per word, and no matter what kind of "language" work it involves.


Direct link Reply with quote
 
XXXphxxx  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 23:27
Portuguese to English
+ ...
Depends Jun 13, 2012

If the new text involves clear blocks of text that have been added to the document then I would perform a word count on those sections and charge by source word. If they are amendments, deletions or new text that is in any way interwoven with the existing text I would charge by the hour.

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Narasimhan Raghavan  Identity Verified
Local time: 04:57
English to Tamil
+ ...
How do you reckon the hours, with stop watch? Jun 13, 2012

For works of this type, I prefer to go to the client's place and do work in his office. In that way it will be charged by the hour.

I don't know whether this can work out if I work at home. At home there is a lot of distractions and frequent interruptions. Will the client believe you when you mention the number of hours? He may have some other idea about the hours to be taken for his work.

Regards,
N. Raghavan


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Natalia Mackevich  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 23:27
Member (2009)
English to Russian
+ ...
Most freelancers charge hourly rates. Jun 13, 2012

Narasimhan Raghavan wrote:

At home there is a lot of distractions and frequent interruptions. Will the client believe you when you mention the number of hours? He may have some other idea about the hours to be taken for his work.

Regards,
N. Raghavan

Professional freelancers have no problems with organizational and accountability issues (at least, they are not supposed to). As for counting the exact time required for the task, there are various timers and time tracking systems online (some of them are free).

By the way, there will be fewer distractions if one rents an office.

[Редактировалось 2012-06-13 10:25 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

LEXpert  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 17:27
Member (2008)
Croatian to English
+ ...
They always want to do this the hard way... Jun 13, 2012

Natalia Mackevich wrote:

Narasimhan Raghavan wrote:

At home there is a lot of distractions and frequent interruptions. Will the client believe you when you mention the number of hours? He may have some other idea about the hours to be taken for his work.

Regards,
N. Raghavan

Professional freelancers have no problems with organizational and accountability issues (at least, they are not supposed to). As for counting the exact time required for the task, there are various timers and time tracking systems online (some of them are free).

By the way, there will be fewer distractions if one rents an office.

[Редактировалось 2012-06-13 10:25 GMT]


In practice, most clients (in particular, agencies) will have some idea of how long a particular type of job should take (assuming standard circumstances), and give you a not-to-exceed budget. If you think it will go over due to unforeseen circumstances, you need to discuss that with them promptly

I generally avoid these update-old-file jobs (at least from certain agencies) unless I actually worked on the original version. The reason is that in many (if not most) cases, the requester has simply calculated (or estimated) the number of "changed" words and offered a word-count-based budget that almost always is woefully inadequate given the need to scroll through to find changes, delete, insert, etc.

Also, almost all requests for this type of work come in the most inefficient format possible, namely a Word file with tracked changes. This understandable from direct clients, but why do agencies do it? In most cases the original source file is available in Word - doesn't it more sense to pretranslate the changed file with the TM from the original job (aligning if necessary to create the TM), then translate the revised file with a CAT tool? That seems a much more sensible way to go about it, and indeed one of the most fundamental reasons to use a CAT tool.

[Edited at 2012-06-13 12:08 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

njweatherdon
Canada
Member (2011)
French to English
+ ...
Glad you asked the question Jun 13, 2012

I wonder about the most reasonable way to approach this as well.

I figure that you should forget about counts of how many words are different. You might have to rewrite every sentence that has one word changed, and at the very least, you're going to have to rethink through whether it's the best translation of the updated sentence.

I think the main thing that makes it easier is that you'll already be familiar with the content and having already figured out some of the more challenging translations.

Generally speaking, as is the case for "repeats" (note, I would never do a second job for someone who counts repeats unless it's exceedingly obvious that entire sections were exactly the same since you still need to review things) you're going to need to carefully review the entire document carefully.

If they insist on a quote, I'd quote something barely under your normal rates and suggest that you'd be happy to charge less depending on how much less work it is to translate the updated document. I would certainly never agree to a substantially lower rate up front without knowing how much work it would be the second time through.

At the end of the day, I figure just make a rough estimate of a reasonable charge given how much work it took, and send an invoice for that much, which would be much less than your original quote (if they insist on it) and everyone should be happy.

(I don't like hourly rates, I could explain various reasons why but I don't think it's relevant here).

I have a somewhat more complicated version of this story. I translated a document. The document went for review. I ALREADY included a charge to proofread the document again and translate a handful of changes. The modifications ended up being substantial, to the point that I will need to retranslate the document. Then again, I suggested directly to the client that it'd be less work, and that I'd just sorta estimate some lower and reasonable charge after the job was done, in account of those factors. If you don't have that kind of flexibility or relationship with the client, I'd quote I fairly high rate just to make sure you don't get stuck.


Direct link Reply with quote
 
maxandrei
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you all so much Jun 13, 2012

for your fast and thoughtful responses.

I think I will go with an hourly rate, as I must read through the whole document and reevaluate sentences with additions or changes.

The question now is, what would be a fair hourly rate (in US$)? I've never charged by the hour!

Thank you all, again.

Cheers.


Direct link Reply with quote
 


To report site rules violations or get help, contact a site moderator:


You can also contact site staff by submitting a support request »

Pricing for translation of an updated text

Advanced search







CafeTran Espresso
You've never met a CAT tool this clever!

Translate faster & easier, using a sophisticated CAT tool built by a translator / developer. Accept jobs from clients who use SDL Trados, MemoQ, Wordfast & major CAT tools. Download and start using CafeTran Espresso -- for free

More info »
Anycount & Translation Office 3000
Translation Office 3000

Translation Office 3000 is an advanced accounting tool for freelance translators and small agencies. TO3000 easily and seamlessly integrates with the business life of professional freelance translators.

More info »



Forums
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs
  • Forums
  • Multiple search