Pages in topic:   [1 2] >
One of the worst offers received
Thread poster: Ana Gutierrez

Ana Gutierrez  Identity Verified
Local time: 21:47
English to Spanish
+ ...
Mar 20, 2015

This month, an agency based in Spain that promises to provide assessment and document management for individuals trying to make their living abroad, contacted me to see if I wanted to do their sworn/certified translations. Their offer: 25 euros for translating and certifying all the documents a client may need, for example, to register with the GMC or the NMC, or to obtain QTS. I calculated that, in a real case I had managed, this would have worked out at little more than 1 euro per word. By the way, they charge the clients 25 to 35 euros more on top of what they pay the translator. Needless to say I told them what I thought, but, sadly, I bet someone will take the job.

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Thomas T. Frost  Identity Verified
Member (2014)
French to Danish
+ ...
1 euro per word Mar 20, 2015

1 euro per word. I don't quite see where the problem is in such a case.

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 21:47
Member (2008)
Italian to English
1 € Mar 20, 2015

Thomas Frost wrote:

1 euro per word. I don't quite see where the problem is in such a case.


Nor do I !

[Edited at 2015-03-20 12:28 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Claudia Weber  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 22:47
Member (2010)
English to German
+ ...
0,01 € Mar 20, 2015

Well, probably she wanted to write 0,01 € per word. Ana, please confirm.

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Georgie Scott  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 22:47
Member (2009)
French to English
+ ...
€80/word Mar 20, 2015

someone once sent me a PO for €80/word. It was also a typo

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Ana Gutierrez  Identity Verified
Local time: 21:47
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Oops! Of course I meant 1 euro per 100 words Mar 20, 2015

or 0.01 euro per word

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Tina Vonhof  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 14:47
Member (2006)
Dutch to English
+ ...
Hourly or per page rate Mar 20, 2015

In any case, certified documents should not be charged per word because they are often very time-consuming to format. An hourly rate or per page rate would be more appropriate.

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Cristiano Lima
Brazil
Local time: 18:47
Member (2014)
Russian to Portuguese
+ ...
Worst Mar 20, 2015

USD 0,025 per word. This week a potential client "cried" because I offered the price of USD 0,08 per word.

Well, but the worst ever was R$ 200,00 (around USD 68) to translate a biography of Constantine of Bizantium, a 200 pages book from Spanish into Portuguese. The one who requested was a judge, a rich man. He called me and when I proposed 10 reals per page (hence 2000 reals), he got shocked, he thought it would cost around 200 reals, then declined.

Even a typist would not ask for such ridiculous value. Some people don't understand about translations at all!


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Thomas T. Frost  Identity Verified
Member (2014)
French to Danish
+ ...
Much worse on other online marketplaces Mar 21, 2015

On sites such as oDesk and Elance, ridiculous rates are commonplace: 1 cent per word for translation or article writing, for example. Many are looking for people to write e-books for them for ridiculous rates like this too, and they expect at 100 % error-free.

Of course, a young person living with his or her parents in a country with very low living costs can get started in the online marketplace that way, gaining experience and reputation, presumably considering that even if their are abused for a while, it is less bad than earning nothing.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Thayenga  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 22:47
Member (2009)
English to German
+ ...
The other side of the coin Mar 21, 2015

Frankly, even the mere idea of offering such low rates is an undisguised insult to all qualified service providers.

However, each coin has two sides. Agencies are businesses that want to make the highest possible profit. Although most agencies see things from both perspectives, there are some who... well, they just don't. So if these manage to find an "uncautious" or start-up service provider to translate and even certify a document for $ or € 0.01 per source word, well, then congratulations on their incredible good luck (and imprudence), especially when they're charging their clients around 0.25 per word.

In all economies prices, rates, wages and salaries, even pensions, increase, as do the costs of living. But this doesn't seem to be the case in our profession. At least not with all clients.

I've said it before, I'll say it again: it is up to us, the translators, to refuse to work for such rates, especially when faced with 60 days' payment terms and, even worse, through PayPal with its fees. Accepting them could easily turn into paying the customers for the "privilege" of receiving work from them.

As Thomas stated, if someone needs and wants to again experience in the industry, and has no bills to pay because s/he is still living at "Hotel Mama", 0.01 is better than nothing. But once they've become translation pros, they need to find new clients because those who "helped" them get started will never be willing to pay more than just half a peanut.





[Edited at 2015-03-21 13:34 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

José Henrique Lamensdorf  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 19:47
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Sworn translations Mar 22, 2015

Ana Gutierrez wrote:

This month, an agency based in Spain that promises to provide assessment and document management for individuals trying to make their living abroad, contacted me to see if I wanted to do their sworn/certified translations. Their offer: 25 euros for translating and certifying all the documents a client may need, for example, to register with the GMC or the NMC, or to obtain QTS. I calculated that, in a real case I had managed, this would have worked out at little more than 1 euro per word. By the way, they charge the clients 25 to 35 euros more on top of what they pay the translator. Needless to say I told them what I thought, but, sadly, I bet someone will take the job.


Hello Ana,

AFAIK Brazil and Spain are the two countries having the most stringent laws on translation of foreign documents for official use.

The two most striking differences I see are:
a) Brazilian sworn translators must be Brazilian citizens, while Spain will accept any EC country citizenship; and
b) Brazilian sworn translators can operate only within the Brazilian territory (NOT including its diplomatic offices elsewhere), while the Spanish counterparts can do it anywhere on our planet.

Brazilian sworn translations must (by law) be charged according to the state government stipulated rates, always based on target text line- or character-count. Though the law is federal, supervision and regulations are statewide; a few Brazilian states don't have any sworn translators at all.

The entire Brazilian sworn translations setup is explained in English at http://www.lamensdorf.com.br/sworn-translation.html .

I understand that Spain doesn't have mandatory rates for sworn translations:
Artículo 12 con el título «Honorarios»: Los Traductores/as-Intérpretes Jurados/as fijarán libremente los honorarios que deban percibir por sus actuaciones.

... however isn't there any association suggesting recommended rates?

Otherwise I envision plenty of backstabbing and throat-slitting among the more "desperado" Spanish sworn translators.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Cristiano Lima
Brazil
Local time: 18:47
Member (2014)
Russian to Portuguese
+ ...
Relevant point Mar 24, 2015


I've said it before, I'll say it again: it is up to us, the translators, to refuse to work for such rates, especially when faced with 60 days' payment terms and, even worse, through PayPal with its fees. Accepting them could easily turn into paying the customers for the "privilege" of receiving work from them.

As Thomas stated, if someone needs and wants to again experience in the industry, and has no bills to pay because s/he is still living at "Hotel Mama", 0.01 is better than nothing. But once they've become translation pros, they need to find new clients because those who "helped" them get started will never be willing to pay more than just half a peanut.


[Edited at 2015-03-21 13:34 GMT]


This week there was a company from Denmark willing to pay the miserable rates of 1000 reals (around 325 dollars) for an interpreter to a Chinese engineer who is going to teach workers how to produce elevators. Btw, it was supposed to be from 08:00am until 18:00pm. I think that a cleaning would be better paid.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Helena Chavarria  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 22:47
Member (2011)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Cleaners are often paid better wages Mar 24, 2015

Cristiano Lima wrote:

I think that a cleaning would be better paid.


Last week I received a phone call from a well-known Spanish temporary staffing agency, which surprised me because I don't remember ever giving them my details, but that's irrelevant.

The point is they offered me an interpreting job five minutes from where I live. It entailed working 12 hours a day for two days, with one hour for lunch. They wanted to pay me €9.50 per hour! I'm afraid I didn't get round to asking them if that was the gross or net rate.

I pay my cleaner €12.00 per hour.

[Edited at 2015-03-24 22:20 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 21:47
Member (2008)
Italian to English
Received this morning Mar 25, 2015

"Hello Dear,

Request you to please confirm your availability as we have few Italian files (around 16000 words) that need to be translated in English and the deadline at the morning 08:00 am UK of 02/04/2015.
Can you please confirm your rate per word is $0.03?

I am waiting for your reply.
Regards,
XXXX"

It's touching to be addressed "Hello Dear"

I don't know where they got the idea that I had said my rate is $0.03. It isn't. So of course I didn't confirm it.




[Edited at 2015-03-25 07:33 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 21:47
Member (2008)
Italian to English
Interesting Mar 25, 2015

Helena Chavarria wrote:


I pay my cleaner €12.00 per hour.


Hmm- a translator who can afford to pay a cleaner. Why do people always cite "cleaners" as an example of the low-paid? Without cleaners we'd be in serious trouble. Cleaners do one of the most important jobs in the world. Just think what would happen if they stopped.

[Edited at 2015-03-25 07:35 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Pages in topic:   [1 2] >


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


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

One of the worst offers received

Advanced search







WordFinder
The words you want Anywhere, Anytime

WordFinder is the market's fastest and easiest way of finding the right word, term, translation or synonym in one or more dictionaries. In our assortment you can choose among more than 120 dictionaries in 15 languages from leading publishers.

More info »
BaccS – Business Accounting Software
Modern desktop project management for freelance translators

BaccS makes it easy for translators to manage their projects, schedule tasks, create invoices, and view highly customizable reports. User-friendly, ProZ.com integration, community-driven development – a few reasons BaccS is trusted by translators!

More info »



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