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Poll: Do you notice a decrease in your workload?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff

ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 21:28
SITE STAFF
Mar 13, 2013

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "Do you notice a decrease in your workload?".

This poll was originally submitted by Rebekka Groß. View the poll results »



 

Milena Taylor  Identity Verified
Serbia
English to Serbian
+ ...
No Mar 13, 2013

My workload has been steadily increasing over the years.

 

Terry Richards
France
Local time: 06:28
French to English
+ ...
Steady decline since 2/12 Mar 13, 2013

In my accounting software I have a smoothed 12-month trend line which was going steadily upwards until October 2011, stayed flat until February 2012 and has been going pretty much steadily downhill ever since.

However, it has now gone upwards for 2 months in a row (Feb. & Mar., even though March is only 1/2 over), something it hasn't done since that peak in 2011. If this trend continues in April, I will be quietly hopeful that things are starting to turn around.

BTW, that's income, not workload. They are obviously linked but it was the highest paying customers that went away first so my workload has decreased less than my income would suggest. If you add in extra marketing-type activities, the time I actually spend at work hasn't changed much at all.

Interestingly, the better-paying customers are showing some signs of coming back, though not yet at the previous volume, and my regular customers are starting to send me more volume. Maybe some of the excess capacity has worked its way out of the system? We can only hope...


 

Julian Holmes  Identity Verified
Japan
Local time: 13:28
Member (2011)
Japanese to English
Yes Mar 13, 2013

However, decreases are not linked to yearly quarters. I notice them when I have not made positive efforts to contact customers or promote myself more to increase my customer base to compensate for customers who are getting less work to outsource in this poor economy.

FYI, in Japan, March and August are slack months and are referred to as the "san-pachi" months here (san-gatsu = March, hachi-gatsu = August). HTH for pollsters with Japanese customers.

I believe I wrote this in a similar poll recently. icon_smile.gif


 

neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 06:28
Spanish to English
+ ...
Specify Mar 13, 2013

Should that be "do you notice" (in general, as a rule) or "are you noticing" (now, lately, in the past few years)?

Up to about five years ago, the first quarter tended to be slack for me and some years were worse than others, but in general my workflow nowadays is pretty steady, although seasonal dips are normal in Spain - for example summer can be slacker because many people take a break, but on the other hand if you're willing to work in summer, there is usually plenty to go around, probably because of all those translators taking a vacation.

Here in the Valencia area, the big local Las Fallas festival more or less kicks off today and lasts until midnight on the 19th, which can have a knock-on effect on working activity. However, I'm really busy this week, although the past weeks couple of have been quieter, which suited me because I'm taking driving lessons so the extra "free" time was a boon.


 

Tim Drayton  Identity Verified
Cyprus
Local time: 07:28
Turkish to English
+ ...
Q3 Mar 13, 2013

I specialise in law, and there seems to be less demand for legal work in the summer months.

 

XXXphxxx (X)  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 05:28
Portuguese to English
+ ...
Unclear Mar 13, 2013

neilmac wrote:

Should that be "do you notice" (in general, as a rule) or "are you noticing" (now, lately, in the past few years)?



I'm with neilmac, I'm unclear if you mean "Have you noticed...", "Did you notice..." (specifically referring to last year)? I'm not sure breaking it down into quarters reveals much.


 

Tim Drayton  Identity Verified
Cyprus
Local time: 07:28
Turkish to English
+ ...
General trend Mar 13, 2013

Lisa Simpson, MCIL wrote:

neilmac wrote:

Should that be "do you notice" (in general, as a rule) or "are you noticing" (now, lately, in the past few years)?



I'm with neilmac, I'm unclear if you mean "Have you noticed...", "Did you notice..." (specifically referring to last year)? I'm not sure breaking it down into quarters reveals much.


I agree that the question is not clearly worded, however, the use of the simple present suggests to me that we are talking (as neilmac suggests) 'in general, as a rule'.

I find that there are clear cyclical patterns that apply to my workload from one year to the next, so that, for example, the run up to Easter in the Western world is a busy time, and this year is no exception.


 

José Henrique Lamensdorf  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 01:28
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Completely random Mar 13, 2013

For some 20+ years (viz. roughly 1987-2007), 50-80% of my workload came from one single direct local client. Changes in business made their demand drop, so I bit the bullet, and spread my client base as thin as possible, now spanning from Australia eastbound to Turkey, and from Reykjavik southbound to Auckland

Though I try to keep a feel for seasonal demand, it's completely random, the graph looking like many interconnected roller coaster circuits.


 

Marlene Blanshay  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 00:28
Member (2009)
French to English
+ ...
no Mar 13, 2013

although there was a very slack period during q3 last year, from about August onward. Since January or late december, it's picked up again and been fairly steady.

 

Christine Andersen  Identity Verified
Denmark
Local time: 06:28
Member (2003)
Danish to English
+ ...
More ups and downs Mar 13, 2013

For a long time I have been offered more work than I could take on as a rule, so I could pick and choose the jobs I would do well, and turn down anything 'beyond my scope', possibly recommending a colleague who specialised in the subject if it was an otherwise desirable job.

Now there seem to be weeks of panic interspersed with quieter weeks, and last month there was a week where I had very little to do... It was actually welcome after working evenings and weekends a fortnight earlier.

At the moment I am booked several days ahead again, like the good old days, and hoping I can take a real break over Easter. There's no knowing at the moment how long it will last...

I don't notice a quarterly pattern.


 

Tatty  Identity Verified
Local time: 06:28
Spanish to English
+ ...
Have you noticed... Mar 13, 2013

I'd definitely go with this tense as you are asking about a result. The question would than have to be adjusted for time, over the last year/ the past five years.

Do you notice... would only really only apply to an action that is repeated regularly.

I work pretty much at full capacity because I work with agencies for the most part. And I take time off when I feel that I can't take it any more, which is probably quite often. I also take my holidays when the rest of the country does. I just prefer it that way. But, I have made an important decision this year, and that is that I feel that I may be too old to sunbathe quite as much as I used to, accordingly my productivity is set to rise, probably only slightly though.


 

Steve Kerry  Identity Verified
Local time: 05:28
German to English
Busy busy... Mar 13, 2013

January was quiet, but the last two months have been very busy for me. But then, famine or feast has always been a feature of working as a freelance translator, so I shan't put down the deposit on that new yacht quite yet...icon_wink.gif

Steve K.


 

Terry Richards
France
Local time: 06:28
French to English
+ ...
And to answer the neilmac version of the question... Mar 13, 2013

Q1: Average
Q2: -15%
Q3: Average
Q4: +15%.


 

Gianluca Marras  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 06:28
Member (2008)
English to Italian
other Mar 13, 2013

As it usually happens, although I have a steady workload, there are periods when I see a sort of "lower number" of translation to be done... it seems like more urgent texts come in, instead of early scheduled translations, but this can happen, and has happened, in different periods every year.

 
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