Rates on profile page - display them or keep them invisible?
Thread poster: Michele Fauble
Michele Fauble  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 06:35
Member (2006)
Norwegian to English
+ ...
Dec 16, 2004

Some proz members have listed their rates on their profile page, and other members have not. What are the pros and cons of listing my rates on my profile page?

Michele Fauble

[Subject edited by staff or moderator 2004-12-16 08:11]


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xxxtazdog
Spain
Local time: 15:35
Spanish to English
+ ...
different markets, clients, etc. Dec 16, 2004

I have mine hidden, for several reasons:

Because I have different (lower) rates for the Spanish market than my rates for other markets.

Because I have different rates for different types of clients (direct, agency, etc.)

Because I have different rates for different types of work (depending on subject, degree of difficulty, format required, etc.)

I would rather have potential clients contact me with specific details so I can give them a quote appropriate to their job.

The downside is that I am regularly contacted by Spanish agencies who see I am in Spain and think I'll accept their regular rates (which are usually 50-75% lower than mine). Seems there are scads of agencies just looking for cheap labor.


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Marijke Singer  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:35
Dutch to English
+ ...
Negotiate rates per job Dec 16, 2004

Cindy Chadd wrote:

I have mine hidden, for several reasons:

Because I have different (lower) rates for the Spanish market than my rates for other markets.

Because I have different rates for different types of clients (direct, agency, etc.)

Because I have different rates for different types of work (depending on subject, degree of difficulty, format required, etc.)

I would rather have potential clients contact me with specific details so I can give them a quote appropriate to their job.

The downside is that I am regularly contacted by Spanish agencies who see I am in Spain and think I'll accept their regular rates (which are usually 50-75% lower than mine). Seems there are scads of agencies just looking for cheap labor.


I agree with Cindy. I do the same and negotiate a rate for specific jobs.


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Burrell  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:35
Member (2004)
English to Latvian
+ ...
Wide range Dec 16, 2004

I put down a very wide range of rates and mention that they depend on volume, subject etc. It leaves me the chance to charge high rates for jobs where I know I can get away with it and low ones when I can afford it.
I know for myself, when I want to purchase a certain thing there is nothing more irritating than POA (price on asking). I simply skip those items and only consider the ones where the price is displayed. But of course my behavioral patterns do not necessarily have to match those of my clients.

Cheers,
Burrell


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Nadjezda Heymans
Local time: 15:35
English to Dutch
+ ...
Visible Dec 16, 2004

The only reason why I have decided to make my rates visible is to avoid translation requests such as "We would like to offer you a translation job, we can only pay 0.03 EUR max per source word because blablabla".

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xxxIreneN
United States
Local time: 08:35
English to Russian
+ ...
I have my rates displayed Dec 16, 2004

Frankly, I never understood 'wide range' of prices. A cent possibly, but I do not display it as a welcome option when I show my rates, those are set firm and my resume (no longer displayed because of Google indexing) shows charges for rush jobs. I value my time and knowledge, not the words. I do not leave half of my experience in a safe deposit box when I accept 'easy' jobs. The client buys me 'in full', not partially, he owns all my time. This is my level of professionalism, this is how much I worth (and apparently in certain areas I am, since I'm making my daily bread and get paid what I ask), not the words. Take it or leave it. In case of 'hard' jobs I lose time for an extensive research. At least I balance off with the easy ones. They are not easy per se, they are easy for me because I'm good:-) and experienced in that area. Extra formatting etc. - extra charge.

I agree with one thing - displayed decent rates serve as a terrific slavedriver repellant.


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Konstantin Kisin  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 14:35
Member (2004)
Russian to English
+ ...
Rates are often an indication of your quality Dec 16, 2004

While I don't agree with the argument that "easy jobs should be paid as well as hard jobs" (which is exactly why my range is broad) I think when you display rates, you a) get rid of potential time wasters ("You have been identified as an outstanding editor and we would like to offer you a job at $10 per hour..") and b) show the kind of playing field you're in, which partly relates to a) and also means that people can sort of guesstimate what kind of quality they should get from you.

Going back to easy vs hard - I think it's a good idea to sometimes take easy jobs at lower rates - the way I look at it is; i want to be making X per working day, I can translate 1k words of a really hard text for $0.14 per word or I can translate 2k words of a really easy text for $0.08, and actually make more money as well. Of course, if I offered $0.14 per word for the easy job, chances are, I'd never get it (and the new client for example). Of course, it's quite important to make the client understand that this rate is what it is because the job is easy, otherwise they'll expect you to do the hard text for the same price next time.

sorry for offtopic!


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Parrot  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 15:35
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
+ ...
An option: Toggle for quality Dec 17, 2004

I entered my rates for the sake of the aggregate total (the subcommunity aggregate average, which pulls the graph up - or down - for my language combinations when outsourcers consult). They reflect the accepted market conditions in Europe and ensure I won't be caught dead undercutting by professional associations, even though they're invisible.

However, as Cindy mentions, they are NOT, by far, the market conditions in Spain, where there may be OTHER reasons for accepting a job (prestigious direct clients, visibility, credits acknowledged by publishers, official paid junkets to Japan or somewhere else interesting, prompt-payment agencies that are a pleasure to deal with, or pure academic/scientific interest in the project or specialization - someone is bound to come up with something, and I can be anarchic enough on these points). I hid them because, if you consider our former Vice-President freaked out when he found how much a day an interpreter cost (the state budget fell 2 cents short of the international word-rate as well), imagine how the rest react... and as I said, there are reasons other than money that keep me working (like enjoyment).



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xxxIreneN
United States
Local time: 08:35
English to Russian
+ ...
Easy sliding into a hard problem Dec 17, 2004

Promoting the very notion of "easy" translations multiplies cheap clients. This should be our internal scale of values, but no client should ever be 'educated' that there are instances when the translator qualifies his/her job as 'easy'. For the client the job can only be hard or harder. IMHO.

I understand that things are much more complicated and negotiations are part of our business. Every job requires an estimate where extra trouble aside of plain words should be assessed and charged. There are many ways to do a favor to an old client - for example, when PowerPoint slides contain only bullet points and simple boxes and a few arrows without much reformatting, I do not even mention any extra trouble and accept it as a regular text. I love PPT and most of the time it does not slow me down to an extent worth mentioning to a good buddy-client. Or translate a 200-word letter for free.

I wonder how does it feel to accept the job for 6 cents/word and get a phone call next day offering 10?

The sad part for me is that today 12 US cents do not sound "top-rank" rate on the world market but there is little I can do about it on the US market where I hunt. Low or high, for us it's still dollars, not euros or pounds.

Let's display our high rates:-).

Sincerely,
Irina


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xxxdf49f
France
Local time: 15:35
display high rates Dec 18, 2004

IreneN wrote:
Promoting the very notion of "easy" translations multiplies cheap clients.
Let's display our high rates:-).


I agree 1000% with Irene - let's display high rates that reflect our real value as skilled professionals. I always tell my clients that translation are like Champagne, you can find the cheap fake sparkling (and bad) stuff at 3 euro or you choose the real thing for 25! ...as a whole they prefer the real thing! (and keep me very very busy!)
-(agencies are of course a different story altogether but I don't work for them anymore - although they just might change their ways if we ALL were to refuse working for them at slave rates...)

And Irene is right in saying there should be no such thing as an "easy" translation for the client. Nothing is ever "easy" anyway in absolute terms -just look at the supposedly "easy" questions in Kudoz, or at the "pro" questions which we may find easy...
Professional and skilled work deserves to be valued at high rates -based on our respective markets-, and that is that! (I wouldn't hire a mason or a mechanic whose rates are too low, because if he's that cheap, then either he's moonlighting while I'm paying all my taxes, or he's begging for work which means there must be something wrong with his skills!)

Besides, does your accountant or attorney or doctor charge you less because you're an "easy" case?!!
Best regards
dominique


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Marie-Hélène Hayles  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:35
Italian to English
+ ...
partly agree, partly disagree... Dec 22, 2004

I dont' categorise jobs into "easy" and "hard", that's for sure, I have set (and different) rates for each agency and client, negotiated individually. For some agencies I work for less than I'd like, but am compensated in other ways - for example, the one which pays me least is also the most professional and pleasant to work with, and that's not something to be taken lightly!

To get back on topic, I have entered my rates but keep them invisible, which is basically an instinctive choice. Although I suppose a rational reason would be that I can then negotiate with any potential client contacting me through proz without them knowing what my lowest acceptable fee is


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