Quoting for editing
Thread poster: Patricia Blazquez

Patricia Blazquez  Identity Verified
South Africa
Local time: 18:32
Member (May 2018)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Aug 24, 2017

Dear translators,

My question is related with editing translated documents.
I recently received a job where I was requiered to do a translation, initially quoted at a rate per word. The client sent me the original in 2 formats, word and pdf, and asked me to send the translation back in those 2 formats. Editing the translated document in both formats took me a reasonable time, but unfortunately I didnt discuss beforehand the rate for editing the final translation with the client.

So my questions are:
Should I still include the time invested in editing in the final invoice?
And if so, what is a reasonable price per hour for editing in those formats?


Kind regards
Patricia


 

Thomas T. Frost  Identity Verified
Member (2014)
Danish to English
+ ...
Why not just save as pdf? Aug 24, 2017

Why couldn't you just save the translation as pdf from the Word document?

As for what to charge or not, it's always better to agree these things with the client before you start, and as soon as you become aware that a demand from the client will require additional work. Of course, using Word's ‘Save As’ function once to save the document as pdf would not require more than a few seconds' work.

But for the time being, you haven't explained why it was necessary to edit each version separately.


 

Teresa Borges
Portugal
Local time: 17:32
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Very weird situation... Aug 24, 2017

... quoting after the job is done? I just can't understand why you had to edit in two different formats. Please explain.

 

Patricia Blazquez  Identity Verified
South Africa
Local time: 18:32
Member (May 2018)
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Quoting for editing Aug 24, 2017

Thank you very much for your answers.
I understand its not professional to charge for something that wasn't discussed beforehand.

And sorry I didn't mean that I had to edit both formats individually, the client asked for the translation in both word and pdf, both of them looking as the original pdf that served as a template. How I understood it is that I had to use the word document as the source document for the translation and edit the resulting word document so it had the same format as the pdf of the translation (eg. layouts of text and images, font sizes and types, etc.), which required me some time, and save it in both word and pdf formats.

Should this editing be considered as part of service of the translation, quoted per word translated?

I apologise if I am asking something that is common practice but i want to be sure how to procede next time.


 

Thomas T. Frost  Identity Verified
Member (2014)
Danish to English
+ ...
Still not clear Aug 24, 2017

Patricia Blazquez wrote:

And sorry I didn't mean that I had to edit both formats individually, the client asked for the translation in both word and pdf, both of them looking as the original pdf that served as a template. How I understood it is that I had to use the word document as the source document for the translation and edit the resulting word document so it had the same format as the pdf of the translation (eg. layouts of text and images, font sizes and types, etc.), which required me some time, and save it in both word and pdf formats.



What you are not telling us is if the source Word document had the same layout as the pdf. If it did, I fail to see why you needed to do any particular editing. If it did not, it would have been better to import the pdf in a CAT tool such as MemoQ, translate it there, and export it in the needed formats. As far as I remember, MemoQ will export a pdf as Word, but in Word you can easily save it as pdf with all layout preserved.

Of course, if the pdf was in (scanned) image format instead of text, this wouldn’t work, but you haven’t given us any information about that either.

In case of image format, most outsourcers would use an OCR application to scan the document and give you that as source, with the original image format as reference.

If manual editing is still needed, it would be reasonable to bill for that in addition, but again, as a professional, it’s up to you to tell the client what a given task will cost per hour or some other unit before you go ahead. You can still ask them nicely now, but it’s a bit late to make any firm demands.


 

Patricia Blazquez  Identity Verified
South Africa
Local time: 18:32
Member (May 2018)
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Quoting for editing Aug 24, 2017

No the word and pdf original documents didn't have the same layout. Some pdf were scanned, some where pdf text and some pdf were protected so I couldn't import them into the CAT tool.

I did use Wordfast and Trados and I imported the available document then edit the translation in word or pdf, in case I could import the original pdf file, and save it in pdf. The exported documents from these softwares still required editing to conform to the template layout (text, pictures, diagrams, logos).


 

Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 17:32
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
Most definitely extra Aug 24, 2017

Patricia Blazquez wrote:
No the word and pdf original documents didn't have the same layout. Some pdf were scanned, some where pdf text and some pdf were protected so I couldn't import them into the CAT tool.

I did use Wordfast and Trados and I imported the available document then edit the translation in word or pdf, in case I could import the original pdf file, and save it in pdf. The exported documents from these softwares still required editing to conform to the template layout (text, pictures, diagrams, logos).


That's a whole load of DTP work! Personally, I wouldn't agree to do it. I specialise in translating words; someone else can specialise in sorting out the DTP. I'd happily make it look similar enough so that someone who didn't understand the two languages could clearly see what was replacing what, but I wouldn't do it in an elegant way. And it would just be in Word.

But I'm afraid you can't ask for extra now.


 

Patricia Blazquez  Identity Verified
South Africa
Local time: 18:32
Member (May 2018)
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Quoting for editing Aug 24, 2017

Thank you, that is what I thought.

And what do you consider as an average DTP rate per hour? Or would it be betterper page?


 

Tradupro17  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 12:32
English to Haitian-Creole
+ ...
Yes Aug 24, 2017

Patricia Blazquez wrote:

Dear translators,

My question is related with editing translated documents.
I recently received a job where I was requiered to do a translation, initially quoted at a rate per word. The client sent me the original in 2 formats, word and pdf, and asked me to send the translation back in those 2 formats. Editing the translated document in both formats took me a reasonable time, but unfortunately I didnt discuss beforehand the rate for editing the final translation with the client.

So my questions are:
Should I still include the time invested in editing in the final invoice?
And if so, what is a reasonable price per hour for editing in those formats?


Kind regards
Patricia


Yes, Patricia. you should be able to charge the client for the extra work.


 

Jo Macdonald  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 18:32
Member (2005)
Italian to English
+ ...
Scanned pdfs Aug 25, 2017

I apply a 10% surcharge to the word count for the extra work involved when translating a Word file that's a scanned version of a pdf or image. If the client wants to check the scan and send me a checked Word file, no surcharge. If they want me to do the page layout work, checking against the original pdf, etc. that's a 10% surcharge. If there are a LOT of images that haven't been converted into text you can't really give an accurate estimate before the job, and I use the word count of the finished translation, or the number of hours the job took at my hourly rate.
The 10% surcharge works for most scanned pdfs.
Abby Finereader is great for converting pdfs and images into Word.

Editing these days in the translation business usually means editing machine translation so it makes some sense.


 

Patricia Blazquez  Identity Verified
South Africa
Local time: 18:32
Member (May 2018)
English to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you for your answer Aug 29, 2017

Thank you very much for your answer, it has been really useful.

 


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