Pages in topic:   [1 2] >
Is ProZ.com membership worth it?
Thread poster: parolagiusta
parolagiusta
United States
Local time: 09:05
Italian to English
May 27, 2013

I am new to Proz so please excuse me if my questions/comments are out of line. I am evaluating whether or not to become a full member. I've been following the job offers posted for my language pairs and applying for some of them. What I've seen several times and that I find discouraging are requests for the translation of legal-medical-technical texts for prices that are "lower than 80%.....". The low rates are quoted in dollars, which would be even lower in Euros. Yet, these outsourcers are Proz members. Isn't there a code of ethics? I cannot work for those rates and I feel that those who do are helping de-professionalize translation. Additionally, if the major part of jobs posted on Proz are with rates like I've seen so far, I don't think it's worth it for me to become a member!

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Woodstock  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:05
German to English
+ ...
I've been a paying member since 2005 May 27, 2013

and have never regretted it. You get a lot for under 10€ a month, like unlimited access to the Blue Board (more important than ever with the growing number of scams nowadays), more job opportunities, higher visibility in the directory, more KudoZ questions, if you need them. Just last week I applied to a job posting, and today I got my first small (trial) assignment from the agency for a very well-known company. If the new client is happy with my work, the price of the membership will be covered in a couple of hours.

Over time and with more experience you will be able to look at a job offer and make an educated evaluation about whether or not applying would likely be a waste of time. You are also more likely to get job offers that are not posted, but are sent by email from potential clients who use the directory to find translators with the qualifications they specifically need.

Even as a paying member, just sitting like a lump will not get you far, though. It helps to have a complete profile, to participate actively in the fora and Kudoz, in other words improve your visibility. Lots of translators are also outsourcers, so it's somewhat like social media. Take advantage of the free webinars, they are often well worth the time spent, though you may not need to be a paying member for those. The group sales for CAT tools can also have great bargains. I could go on, but I think you get the idea.

If you are still not convinced, you might want a 6-month trial instead.

My answer to your question is "Yes"! Other people have major issues with a some things, or are not so thrilled with the results, but I'm pretty satisfied with my investment.


Direct link Reply with quote
 
parolagiusta
United States
Local time: 09:05
Italian to English
TOPIC STARTER
Good info May 28, 2013

Thank you for the good information!

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 09:05
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
Most jobs come through the directory, not through jobs posts May 28, 2013

parolagiusta wrote:
I've been following the job offers posted for my language pairs and applying for some of them. What I've seen several times and that I find discouraging are requests for [very low rates].


It is said (by ProZ.com, based on their research) that the jobs posts system makes up only a small part of the jobs that you can get through ProZ.com. Most translators who get jobs via ProZ.com get them after clients contact them directly, after having found them in a directory search. And if you're not a paying member, then you are not near the top of the search results.

Do not judge the quality of jobs that you can get via the directory by the quality of the jobs in the jobs posts system.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Sonia Hill
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:05
Italian to English
I work in your language pair May 28, 2013

I very rarely bother looking at the jobs section for precisely the reasons you have stated. However, I have been contacted privately by numerous clients through the directory. Many of these clients have proved happy to pay my rates and send me lots of work. Being a member means that I appear higher up in the directory, so I certainly think it is worth it. Access to the Blueboard is also very useful.

Direct link Reply with quote
 

Balasubramaniam L.  Identity Verified
India
Local time: 13:35
Member (2006)
English to Hindi
+ ...
You get access to important areas of the site May 28, 2013

Blue board is one of them, and it can save you from many dodgy clients.

Another is the forums. The more active you are in the forums the more you get noticed by clients. Each forum post is like an ad insert because it is accompanied by your name, your language pairs and an active link to your profile.

Only paid member's posts are immediately made visible without the need of being vetted by moderators, so it is easier for paid members to participate in forum discussions.

There are also a few fringe benefits

- you get 100 MB of free space in proz.com's servers where you can put up your website.

- You can participate in group buys of software such as Trados and get attractive discounts.

- You can immediately apply for jobs that are posted, non paying members are allowed only after 12 hours or so, by which time the job is usually gone.

But the real juicy jobs are the ones you get by being directly contacted from your profile by clients, not the ones that are posted on the job board. The jobs appearing on the job board are mostly posted by price-conscious clients looking for the cheapest translator. Most established translators don't even apply for them as they know their higher rates would be too much for these job posters.

Paid members are displayed first in the translator lists so paid members are more visible in the translator lists and get contacted more frequently by clients.

[2013-05-28 12:20 GMT पर संपादन हुआ]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

LEXpert  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 02:05
Member (2008)
Croatian to English
+ ...
Caveat about directory placement May 28, 2013

Balasubramaniam L. wrote:

Blue board is one of them, and it can save you from many dodgy clients.

Another is the forums. The more active you are in the forums the more you get noticed by clients. Each forum post is like an ad insert because it is accompanied by your name, your language pairs and an active link to your profile.

Only paid member's posts are immediately made visible without the need of being vetted by moderators, so it is easier for paid members to participate in forum discussions.

There are also a few fringe benefits

- you get 100 MB of free space in proz.com's servers where you can put up your website.

- You can participate in group buys of software such as Trados and get attractive discounts.

- You can immediately apply for jobs that are posted, non paying members are allowed only after 12 hours or so, by which time the job is usually gone.

But the real juicy jobs are the ones you get by being directly contacted from your profile by clients, not the ones that are posted on the job board. The jobs appearing on the job board are mostly posted by price-conscious clients looking for the cheapest translator. Most established translators don't even apply for them as they know their higher rates would be too much for these job posters.

Paid members are displayed first in the translator lists so paid members are more visible in the translator lists and get contacted more frequently by clients.

[2013-05-28 12:20 GMT पर संपादन हुआ]


Agree with everything above, except that there is no real benefit as far as directory placement goes unless you have tons of Kudoz. I am a paying member and a Certified Pro, yet still somewhere on page 5 of the listing for one of my major combinations. This state of affairs is definitely not aided by the artificial crowding of that into-English combination, because virtually every single native of the source language in question also claims to work into English.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

John Farebrother  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
French to English
+ ...
That's my experience May 28, 2013

Samuel Murray wrote:



It is said (by ProZ.com, based on their research) that the jobs posts system makes up only a small part of the jobs that you can get through ProZ.com. Most translators who get jobs via ProZ.com get them after clients contact them directly, after having found them in a directory search.




I find the subscription more than pays for itself each year.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 09:05
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
Don't need paid membership for Blue Board access May 28, 2013

Balasubramaniam L. wrote:
Blue board is one of them, and it can save you from many dodgy clients.


A common myth in these forums. The Blue Board is visible to the public -- you don't need to be a paying member to see it. What membership buys you is the ability to see the individual comments and to see who posted what comment.

Only paid member's posts are immediately made visible without the need of being vetted by moderators...


No, as far as I know, non-paying members' posts are not vetted if their identity is verified.

- you get 100 MB of free space in proz.com's servers where you can put up your website.


You can get ten times that amount of web space for a fraction of the cost, elsewhere.

- You can participate in group buys of software such as Trados and get attractive discounts.


Are you sure non-paying members can't participate in the group buys?

- You can immediately apply for jobs that are posted, non paying members are allowed only after 12 hours or so, by which time the job is usually gone.


This is a slight advantage, yes, if you can respond to jobs quickly and are willing to work for the rates that those jobs are posted in. Not all jobs are limited to paying members first, but many are.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 09:05
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
@Rolf May 28, 2013

Rudolf Vedo CT wrote:
I am a paying member and a Certified Pro, yet still somewhere on page 5 of the listing for one of my major combinations.


Does this also apply if clients specify a subject field? I know that if you don't specify a subject field, then you have little chance to be seen unless you have tons of KudoZ points, but if the client specifies the subject field, the number of candidates is smaller.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Jenn Mercer  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 03:05
Member (2009)
French to English
KudoZ help only so much May 28, 2013

Samuel Murray wrote:

Rudolf Vedo CT wrote:
I am a paying member and a Certified Pro, yet still somewhere on page 5 of the listing for one of my major combinations.


Does this also apply if clients specify a subject field? I know that if you don't specify a subject field, then you have little chance to be seen unless you have tons of KudoZ points, but if the client specifies the subject field, the number of candidates is smaller.


The number of candidates is smaller if the client specifies a subject, but for common subjects in common language pairs, that often makes very little difference. For example, I have more KudoZ points in business than other subjects (partially due to the fact that many business KudoZ questions are posted), but I am on the 8th page of French to English translators for this category.


Direct link Reply with quote
 

LEXpert  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 02:05
Member (2008)
Croatian to English
+ ...
@Samuel - not so much May 28, 2013

Samuel Murray wrote:

Rudolf Vedo CT wrote:
I am a paying member and a Certified Pro, yet still somewhere on page 5 of the listing for one of my major combinations.


Does this also apply if clients specify a subject field? I know that if you don't specify a subject field, then you have little chance to be seen unless you have tons of KudoZ points, but if the client specifies the subject field, the number of candidates is smaller.


As Jenn said, if the combination or specialty is not particularly exotic, it doesn't make much difference. However, in my case, narrowing the location down to the US makes a huge difference (only 9 member results, even with no specialty selected).

Rudi


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Woodstock  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:05
German to English
+ ...
Directory placement May 28, 2013

does help some, but I haven't had quite the same wonderful experiences with direct solicitations via the directory in the last few years that a few others seem to have had. I usually reject about 90% of them because of low rates or they reject me as being too expensive, the remaining 10% keep me in the database.... During the first few years at Proz, I did work more often with clients who found me through the directory because the rates were acceptable, but not anymore as my rates increased over time. More recently I have had more success finding quality clients willing to pay fair rates by being very selective in responding to a job or call for translators on the board. That's what I meant about developing a discriminating eye for potential clients. The relationships with my 3 best clients who supply me with regular, decent-paying work all came about from me applying to them through the job board, not vice versa. But no matter how you look at it, my membership has paid for itself many times over.

Edited for clarity

[Edited at 2013-05-28 23:01 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 09:05
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
I don't think it has paid for itself for me May 29, 2013

Woodstock wrote:
But no matter how you look at it, my membership has paid for itself many times over.


Still, ProZ.com membership is a normal business expense. Remember, "Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don't know which half."


Direct link Reply with quote
 

Łukasz Gos-Furmankiewicz  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 09:05
English to Polish
+ ...
Cert. Pro doesn't actually move you higher in rankings Jun 5, 2013

Rudolf Vedo CT wrote:

Agree with everything above, except that there is no real benefit as far as directory placement goes unless you have tons of Kudoz. I am a paying member and a Certified Pro, yet still somewhere on page 5 of the listing for one of my major combinations. This state of affairs is definitely not aided by the artificial crowding of that into-English combination, because virtually every single native of the source language in question also claims to work into English.


Here's some good news for you, though: Any client who wants to work exclusively with native speakers of the target language (and that's quite a lot of outsourcers to begin with), has the option to use the appropriate filter in his search.

***

Also, I've got to agree with Woodstock. I've only just paid for my membership, but once upon a time I was a moderator somewhere else like this place. Basically, all things like memberships etc. enhance your visibility and credibility.

Just like on dating websites, being willing to pay a membership fee implies commitment and comes with the presumption that you wouldn't be able to afford registering in one million places with fake accounts that are mostly dead and not worth contacting. If you're somewhat active, you avoid being one of the few active people who are not full, paying members.

On the other hand, it's a good profile that gets you the inquiries, while it's good handling of inquiries on your part that gets you conversions. Apart from the fact that I should probably leave this 'industry' to become a relationship counsellor, I believe that what you need in your profile is:

– a good picture (not necessarily professional, this can harm your chances with certain target audiences, but a professional picture generally gives a profile a high-profile feel);
– not a single typo or missing comma or capital letter anywhere whatsoever (few people notice, but those do are not impressed);
– no quirky non-native language;
– enough writing to convey the basics but not enough to put the reader to sleep or appear eccentric;
– sample translations (don't have to be actual projects);
– a good CV in every language that matters to you.

Pro tip: Proz profiles might fail to accept all the HTML tags you'd want, but they will accept pretty much any inline styling. Now that's a lot of cool typography to assist you, such as initials, leading, letter spacing, small caps and whatnot. Heck, you can even go for semi-transparent pictures and rounded borders.

[Edited at 2013-06-05 16:48 GMT]

Woodstock wrote:

does help some, but I haven't had quite the same wonderful experiences with direct solicitations via the directory in the last few years that a few others seem to have had. I usually reject about 90% of them because of low rates or they reject me as being too expensive, the remaining 10% keep me in the database.... During the first few years at Proz, I did work more often with clients who found me through the directory because the rates were acceptable, but not anymore as my rates increased over time. More recently I have had more success finding quality clients willing to pay fair rates by being very selective in responding to a job or call for translators on the board. That's what I meant about developing a discriminating eye for potential clients. The relationships with my 3 best clients who supply me with regular, decent-paying work all came about from me applying to them through the job board, not vice versa. But no matter how you look at it, my membership has paid for itself many times over.

Edited for clarity

[Edited at 2013-05-28 23:01 GMT]


Yeah, pay attention to those recruitment ads.

[Edited at 2013-06-05 16:49 GMT]

[Edited at 2013-06-05 16:52 GMT]

[Edited at 2013-06-05 16:58 GMT]


Direct link Reply with quote
 
Pages in topic:   [1 2] >


To report site rules violations or get help, contact a site moderator:


You can also contact site staff by submitting a support request »

Is ProZ.com membership worth it?

Advanced search






CafeTran Espresso
You've never met a CAT tool this clever!

Translate faster & easier, using a sophisticated CAT tool built by a translator / developer. Accept jobs from clients who use SDL Trados, MemoQ, Wordfast & major CAT tools. Download and start using CafeTran Espresso -- for free

More info »
TM-Town
Manage your TMs and Terms ... and boost your translation business

Are you ready for something fresh in the industry? TM-Town is a unique new site for you -- the freelance translator -- to store, manage and share translation memories (TMs) and glossaries...and potentially meet new clients on the basis of your prior work.

More info »



Forums
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs
  • Forums
  • Multiple search