RE: Translation costs?

Subject: RE: Translation costs?
From: "Martinek, Carla" <CMartinek -at- zebra -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 3 Jun 2004 08:51:34 -0500

The low costs Geoff quoted are, in my experience, typically from from
independent translators. Remember -- you get what you pay for, and the
costs for an independent translator often do not include a review by a
second translator. Just as a writer should always have someone else
review/edit their documentation, a translator should have their translations
reviewed, and at 0.03/word, I can't imagine that would happen.

The higher costs ($0.20 and above for new translations) usually come from
translation houses, where you get value added in for that extra cost. In
the case of the translation company I use, that means that the translations
are proofed by a second translator for errors. It doesn't guarantee
perfection, but it certainly gets it closer.

My language translations run in the $0.20-0.30 range, and cover a broad
spectrum, including European (east and west), Russian, Middle Eastern, and
Asian. Total: 16 languages for standard translations, 22 for a few select

Carla Martinek, Translation Coordinator/Editor
Zebra Technologies Corporation
333 Corporate Woods Parkway, Vernon Hills, IL 60061
tel: 847.793.5616 fax: 847.821.1795
cmartinek -at- zebra -dot- com

-----Original Message-----
From: Marguerite Krupp [mailto:mkrupp -at- cisco -dot- com]
Sent: Thursday, June 03, 2004 8:24 AM
Subject: RE: techwr-l digest: June 02, 2004

Geoff Hart wrote:

Translation costs typically run (U.S. dollars) $0.03 to $0.20
per word
based on my experience in the Canadian market, depending on
how readily
available translators are (for obscure or less-common subjects, the
cost increases), how much of your work is suitable for machine
translation (translation memories make it easier to re-use text and
thus decrease costs and work well for computer manuals; they
don't work
for marketing or poetry), and how much competition there is for
business in your area.


Based on what I learned from the translation companies at the 2004 STC
Conference, I'd say that these figures are WAY low for
localizing computer
manuals. I was getting quotes of (U.S.) $.23 to $.50 per
word, depending on
the complexity of the material and the target language.

As always, YMMV!


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