What would be a fair rate in your view?
Thread poster: CMJ_Trans (X)

CMJ_Trans (X)
Local time: 22:10
French to English
+ ...
Jul 20, 2005

I am being offered a contract to provide consultancy/copywriting/translation services for a major group. I used to work for this group in another country as an employee so basically I will be doing a similar job to one I have done before.
They are offering me a certain amount per day/half-day based on my previous salary.
First of all, I am not used to charging on the basis of time (except when interpreting) and secondly I'm not even sure they are offering me a fair deaL

How much dare I ask for in your view?


Marion Schimmelpfennig  Identity Verified
Local time: 22:10
Member (2003)
English to German
Rate should be higher Jul 20, 2005

Since you are no employee anymore and thus neither have the security of a steady income nor the benefits normal employess usually get, you should ask for a higher rate. That's simply the way it goes in cases like that.

Good luck in haggling!


CMJ_Trans (X)
Local time: 22:10
French to English
+ ...
they are offering more but how much more? Jul 20, 2005

They have calculated a daily rate and upped it but I'm not sure they have upped it enough. I just don't know the going rate


Harry Bornemann  Identity Verified
English to German
+ ...
Factor 1.4 Jul 20, 2005

In Germany you would have to take the hourly income as an employee times 1.4 (+/- 0.1) to get the corresponding hourly rate as a freelancer, taking into account average holidays, illness and other benefits for employees.


French to English
+ ...
1.5 times your former salary at the very least Jul 20, 2005

Given their reduced costs and the added ones that you will incur, one and a half times your former salary would be the minimum rate I would accept. Make that twice as much (as a bare minimum) if this is relatively short term. What are their alternatives? Hiring someone with your profile at part-time? Hiring someone at full time for a less than full work load? They can do better than that.


sarahl (X)
Local time: 13:10
English to French
+ ...
can you call a headhunter? Jul 20, 2005

Pretend you work for a major group and you're considering hiring a consultant/copywriter/translator, they should be able to give you a ballpark number.

Don't sell yourself cheap, consultants usually charge a bundle.icon_biggrin.gif


Harry Bornemann  Identity Verified
English to German
+ ...
Indeed.. Jul 20, 2005

sarahl wrote:
Don't sell yourself cheap, consultants usually charge a bundle.:D

[Edited at 2005-07-20 10:10]


Jussi Rosti  Identity Verified
Local time: 23:10
Member (2005)
English to Finnish
+ ...
1.5 Jul 20, 2005

I agree 1.5x is ok.


Marie-Hélène Hayles  Identity Verified
Local time: 22:10
Italian to English
+ ...
I wouldn't base it on your previous salary Jul 20, 2005

(unless it was very high!). I'd base it on how much you would normally expect to earn as a freelancer in a given period - how many pages/words can you normally do in that time and how much do you charge for that quantity? Having worked that out, you can decide whether you want to offer them a discount or not - based on expected quantities of work and so on. But I think the fact you used to work for them is irrelevant when deciding how much to charge them.


RobinB  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 15:10
German to English
Yes, base on target revenue Jul 20, 2005

Marie-Helene Hayles wrote:
I'd base it on how much you would normally expect to earn as a freelancer in a given period ... But I think the fact you used to work for them is irrelevant when deciding how much to charge them.

Absolutely, that's the only way to do it. Using multiples based on salaries is not merely irrelevant, it's downright dangerous. Firstly, what we do as freelances is not comparable with the work of a salaried translator. Secondly, there's no risk premium for self-employment in there. Thirdly, surely the point about self-employment is that a) you can determine your own earnings (subject to market constaints, of course), and b) you want to command a premium over the "wage slaves" in the first place.

So as Marie-Helene says, take your target revenue for the year, divide by the number of working days (normally between 220 and 250) and there's your daily revenue target. That's what you charge (for a standard 8-hour working day). Of course you can adjust it up or down for other factors, but that's what should be at the back of your mind. Plus expenses, of course.


Dusica Cook
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Local time: 22:10
English to Bosnian
+ ...
consultants ask more Jul 20, 2005

when i went into consultancy busines, i went to a course 'how to value yourself'... what i learned there is the following calculation:

- current salary per hour (e.g. 1000 EUR / 172 hrs = 5,81
- round it 5,81 = 6,00 EUR per hour
- multiply with 3, 4, or 5, depending on a scale of difficulcy
- be realistic in amount of hours you need to complete the job
- always consider 5% extra hours in case things go wrong

if i do a translation job that is paid on hourly basis, i will charge 4 x standard hourly rate (6 in this example). if i am required to do editing, than it is 3 x for a well done translation and 4 x for a poor one, if i am asked to produce something (project or something), than it is 5 x

i hope this helps


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