Re: Translation costs

Subject: Re: Translation costs
From: Max Wyss <prodok -at- PRODOK -dot- CH>
Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 20:22:04 +0100

Geoff Hart asked me to forward the following message to the discussion, as
he is having problems accessing the list. I guess this could contribute to
the discussion.

Max Wyss
PRODOK Engineering AG
Technical documentation and translations, Electronic Publishing
CH-8906 Bonstetten, Switzerland

Fax: +41 1 700 20 37
e-mail: mailto:prodok -at- prodok -dot- ch or 100012 -dot- 44 -at- compuserve -dot- com

Bridging the Knowledge Gap


>I'll throw my vote behind Max Wyss on this issue. There are good
>and bad translation agencies, just as there are good and bad
>freelancers. Don't let someone's employment status make your decision
>for you. Simplistically: Freelancers offer one unbeatable advantage
>over agencies: you're not paying for the agency's overhead costs.
>Large agencies offer one unbeatable advantage over freelancers: they
>can offer complete project management and localisation services for
>large and complex projects. For jobs somewhere in the middle, you
>have to shop around to determine whether you need an agency.
>As for costs, I'll chime in that I've mostly seen rates of between
>$0.10 and $0.30 (Canadian) per word in the source language;
>that's for Montreal (Canada). Personally, I freelance at $0.20
>(French to English). If you're managing a project, my own experience
>is that you'll need to budget either time or money for (1)
>proofreading to make sure the translation is complete and accurate
>(you wouldn't believe some of the unedited things I'm given to
>translate) and (2) localisation to ensure that the language is
>appropriate to your actual audience. Neither of these is trivial, and
>if you're planning to internationalize your product, a freelancer is
>unlikely to have expertise in enough markets to help you; if you're
>only targeting one market, a freelancer working in that market can
>probably handle the localisation issues automatically during the
>translation. (Never let someone outside the market attempt
>localisation for you; for example Quebec French is very different
>from French, Swiss, and Belgian French, and a Quebec-based translator
>would likely prove a poor choice for translations aimed at any of
>those markets.)
>--Geoff Hart @8^{)}
>geoff-h -at- mtl -dot- feric -dot- ca

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