Poll: Do you have a portfolio of previous work you can show potential clients?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff

ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 03:29
SITE STAFF
Jul 14, 2017

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "Do you have a portfolio of previous work you can show potential clients?".

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Angus Stewart  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 11:29
Member (2011)
French to English
+ ...
No Jul 14, 2017

In the field in which I work, the confidentiality of the previous work I have done for my clients is sacrosanct.

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neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 12:29
Spanish to English
+ ...
Other Jul 14, 2017

I suppose I could have... if I ever wanted to convince potential clients, which I currently don't. But basically I second what Angus says in his post. And the same goes for TMs. Any client wanting a TM can have one specifically created for them as client, or for the project or job in question, but otherwise they can whistle.

PS: In my current state of grace, I can't even be bothered providing an "updated" CV... never mind an entire "portfolio"....

[Edited at 2017-07-14 08:50 GMT]


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Teresa Borges
Portugal
Local time: 11:29
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Yes Jul 14, 2017

I’ve signed NDAs with most of my clients, but I translate quite regularly for a Portuguese weekly newspaper (“Expresso”) and the Portuguese version of a French monthly magazine (“Courrier International”) and I’ve selected a few examples to show to potential clients who visit my website (http://www.bpt.com.pt/index.php?a=samples).

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Muriel Vasconcellos  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 03:29
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Other Jul 14, 2017

My website (www.murieltranslations.com) has links to my book translations and a number of translations that appeared in magazines. They are all from long ago.

I have considered putting together a portfolio of more recent translations that appeared in journals and other publications.


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DZiW
Ukraine
English to Russian
+ ...
indeed Jul 14, 2017

Although I'm working with direct clients, I still have got an updated portfolio with samples in several fields and language pairs (including a few official web-site and promo translations) in store. Just in case)

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Nikki Scott-Despaigne  Identity Verified
Local time: 12:29
French to English
Confidentiality Jul 14, 2017

Confidentiality can pose problems, although in many cases, it is theoretically possible to make the documents anonymous. However, in many others, copying an extract, even putting XXXs here and YYYs there still means the source is traceable. Confidentiality and anonymity, and the non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) signed, means it is simply not possible. There is also a general statutory duty of professional secrecy in France as it is. Also, anyone could say that any piece of work is his or hers. There is a much simpler way, that is asking clients for references. I have a couple and indeed usually make sure I always have a couple of recent ones to hand. Never does any harm and often convinces potential new clients. All in all, the best way to build your client base is word-of-mouth, client-to-client, or between fellow translators one trusts.

[Edited at 2017-07-14 15:19 GMT]


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Gianluca Marras  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 12:29
Member (2008)
English to Italian
no Jul 14, 2017

Same here.

I have in my computer all the translations done but none can be shown

Angus Stewart wrote:

In the field in which I work, the confidentiality of the previous work I have done for my clients is sacrosanct.


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Francisco ABREU  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 07:29
Member (2005)
English to Portuguese
+ ...


Posted via
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Never share previous works Jul 14, 2017

I don't share previous or current works with anyone. My clients implicitly expect their materials to be treated with the utmost confidentiality. Prospective clients generally understand and value that concept.

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Connected Trans  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 11:29
Member (2017)
Chinese to English
+ ...
Confidentiality Jul 14, 2017

Confidentiality has to be paramount. I only have a few samples on my profile, all of which are from translations that were made publicly available anyway and which the client had agreed that I could publish. Clients have to be satisfied that I am the only one who will see their document.

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Ricki Farn
Germany
Local time: 12:29
Member (2005)
English to German
Other Jul 14, 2017

I have a portfolio to show, but not of previous work - (a) for confidentiality reasons, but (b) also because proofreaders often introduce things that I don't consider "my translation" any more, so I couldn't just send people a link to web pages I have done. For my portfolio, I've just translated some texts available under Creative Commons.

It's different for people who translate novels and such things, where the translator is listed in the book itself along with the author. They can just link to Amazon.


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Michael Harris  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 12:29
Member (2006)
German to English
No Jul 14, 2017

Angus Stewart wrote:

In the field in which I work, the confidentiality of the previous work I have done for my clients is sacrosanct.


Same "problem" here, but apart from that, I would not present them anything anyway.


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Mario Freitas  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 07:29
Member (2014)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Something we shouldn't do Jul 14, 2017

We cannot "show" previous work to potential clients, unless we change all company/product/etc names to "XXX", and you still run the risk of breaching an NDA, since there are addresses, e-mails, URLs, etc. in the documents. It's something we really shouldn't do.

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Kay Denney  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 12:29
Member (Apr 2018)
French to English
sort of Jul 16, 2017

When I wanted to get my master on the strength of my learning on the job, I had to put a portfolio together to show that I didn't need to do all the learning modules. In the end I only needed to do the theory of translation module plus a couple of modules translation from target to source. So the portfolio is a pretty broad set of translations. I had to ask the clients whether I could use their work and whether I would need to blank out any identifying bits, they all agreed except for one who said he'd need to check I'd made the samples truly anonymous. In the end, I just cited a couple of expressions out of his files as examples of having to adapt prose for the reader's culture, and how franglais can be a deadly trap. Anyway, I did mention at the time that it would be for my master but perhaps also to show potential clients, so I can send it to anyone who asks.

I have yet to send it to anyone however since I haven't actually needed to market my services since going freelance.


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