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Poll: What helps you most in getting a project?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff

ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 02:02
SITE STAFF
Aug 13

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "What helps you most in getting a project?".

This poll was originally submitted by Bernhard Sulzer. View the poll results »



 

Muriel Vasconcellos  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 02:02
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Other - my reputation Aug 13

Almost all my new clients come to me via word of mouth. I've been in this business for many decades.

neilmac
Christine Andersen
Teresa Borges
Nhu Phuong Tran
Philip Lees
Jo Macdonald
Véronique Guider
 

neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 11:02
Spanish to English
+ ...
Other Aug 13

For a few years now, any new clients and/or "projects" have come to me by word-of-mouth recommendation from current or previously satisfied customers. And I don't work with agencies if I can help it, although I do occasionally collaborate with one, when I can, and if the job seems initially relatively hassle-free.

Philip Lees
Jo Macdonald
Liviu-Lee Roth
 

Matthias Brombach  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 11:02
Member (2007)
Dutch to German
+ ...
Other Aug 13

Your KudoZ ranking position definitely plays a role to get projects at all, and it does not need to be among the top ones. But to get a project via the job portal, you simply should offer your "best price". The times, when I could beat the drum with my technical / engineering background, seem to be long gone.

Jo Macdonald
 

Kay-Viktor Stegemann
Germany
Local time: 11:02
Member (2016)
English to German
Area of expertise Aug 13

While my area of expertise is not really "rare", it seems that demand in this area is higher than supply, and that's the critical factor.

ipv
Laura Bissio CT
Angie Garbarino
 

Teresa Borges
Portugal
Local time: 10:02
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Other Aug 13

I suppose my experience and reputation may play a part, as I don’t offer low rates, my area of expertise is not rare, my language combinations are not rare, I don’t answer many job board posts, I’m not active on social media, I don’t answer mass emails…

Kevin Fulton
Eduan Moraes
gram-br
Philip Lees
Alexandra Speirs
Liviu-Lee Roth
Véronique Guider
 

Kay Denney  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 11:02
Member (2018)
French to English
. Aug 13

My language pair is just about the most common, and I don't consider that I have much in the way of true expertise that can't be learned from a couple of days' reading up on Internet. A lot of agencies try to reduce my rate so I presume I'm not exactly cheap either.
When pitching for a job, I've noticed that clients are always reassured when I tell them that I have already translated texts in their line of business. Having worked for a generalist agency for nigh on 19 years, there are an
... See more
My language pair is just about the most common, and I don't consider that I have much in the way of true expertise that can't be learned from a couple of days' reading up on Internet. A lot of agencies try to reduce my rate so I presume I'm not exactly cheap either.
When pitching for a job, I've noticed that clients are always reassured when I tell them that I have already translated texts in their line of business. Having worked for a generalist agency for nigh on 19 years, there are an awful lot of lines of business that I have translated in, so I can mostly come up with a few names of firms I've translated indirectly for, and often an anecdote or two to show that I know what they are talking about.
Other than that, most of my clients are people I got to know while at the agency, so I suppose my reputation is pretty important too.
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Hin und Wieder
 

DZiW
Ukraine
English to Russian
+ ...
Other Aug 13

Unlike most freelancers, I'm not just a "pure" (linguist-theorist) translator, but rather a biz-aware specialist in several non-translation fields, yet with secondary foreign language skills: translation is not my primary source of income, merely a means of communication. Anyway, I mostly work with languages as an interpreter [working with people], not a translator [working with papers].

In all, (1) business awareness, (2) worthiness/value, and (3) opti
... See more
Unlike most freelancers, I'm not just a "pure" (linguist-theorist) translator, but rather a biz-aware specialist in several non-translation fields, yet with secondary foreign language skills: translation is not my primary source of income, merely a means of communication. Anyway, I mostly work with languages as an interpreter [working with people], not a translator [working with papers].

In all, (1) business awareness, (2) worthiness/value, and (3) optimistic communication does the trick for me)
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Liviu-Lee Roth
 

ventnai  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 11:02
Member
German to English
+ ...
Contacts Aug 14

Some of my work comes from contacts, usual word-of-mouth and employees moving between agencies.

 

Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 11:02
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
P... Aug 14

Bernhard Sulzer wrote:
What helps you most in getting a project?


Politeness. And promptness.


Paul van Zijll
 

Amel Abdullah  Identity Verified
Jordan
Arabic to English
+ ...
In my opinion... Aug 14

1. Good communication skills during the negotiation phase;
2. Willingness to perform sample translations when appropriate.


 

Romina Eva Pérez Escorihuela
Argentina
Local time: 06:02
Member (2010)
English to Spanish
+ ...
"Rare" combination Aug 14

Although Spanish is my native language, I've been working mostly as an English into Portuguese interpreter in Argentina... there are just a few of us, professional T&I with this language combination in this Spanish-speaking country... Word-of-mouth also plays an important role, and finally, being a professor at University brought me interesting job offers, too.

 

Mario Freitas  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 06:02
Member (2014)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Indication or Tests Aug 14

The vast majority of regular clients I have were either by indication of colleagues/agencies or by taking a translation test they required and showing results, quality and accuracy above average.

But once I have the chance of actually doing a job for a new client, they'll likely become regular clients, and they usually do, because I offer several differentials and extras that most colleagues don't. Once they see they way I work and communicate with them, as well as the quality of th
... See more
The vast majority of regular clients I have were either by indication of colleagues/agencies or by taking a translation test they required and showing results, quality and accuracy above average.

But once I have the chance of actually doing a job for a new client, they'll likely become regular clients, and they usually do, because I offer several differentials and extras that most colleagues don't. Once they see they way I work and communicate with them, as well as the quality of the work I deliver to them they usually notice these differentials and send me more jobs. (sorry for not being modest at all here).

Qualifications, titles, certificates and other similar resources have proven not to be sufficient in our market. What the client wants is good quality translations.
And, no, low rates are NOT a good channel. You don't want clients that choose their professionals according to their rates. These are undesired clients.



[Edited at 2019-08-14 18:59 GMT]
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Amel Abdullah
Alessandra Ogna Meza
Jorge Payan
 

Heather Oland  Identity Verified
Local time: 05:02
Member (2005)
Spanish to English
+ ...
P... continued Aug 16

Samuel Murray wrote:

Bernhard Sulzer wrote:
What helps you most in getting a project?


Politeness. And promptness.


Professionalism.


Liviu-Lee Roth
 

Nikki Scott-Despaigne  Identity Verified
Local time: 11:02
French to English
Word of mouth Aug 16

Honestly, I would like to have put "being good at what I do". It might sound vain, but if after 25 years as a translator, I didn't have some idea of my worth, then that would be a little awkward, would it not? In "being good, etc.", let's include linguistic skills, specific knowledge, deadlines, communication with clients, efficiency, etc.

I say this bearing in mind that I am never the only one and that clients can go elsewhere. Others may be better, or not as good, and get the wor
... See more
Honestly, I would like to have put "being good at what I do". It might sound vain, but if after 25 years as a translator, I didn't have some idea of my worth, then that would be a little awkward, would it not? In "being good, etc.", let's include linguistic skills, specific knowledge, deadlines, communication with clients, efficiency, etc.

I say this bearing in mind that I am never the only one and that clients can go elsewhere. Others may be better, or not as good, and get the work too, of course.
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