What companies or online platforms need Spanish translators?
מפרסם התגובה: Josep Claret

Josep Claret  Identity Verified
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Local time: 04:52
חבר (Apr 2020)
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Feb 13

Hi everyone,

I have a Diploma in Translation and Interpretation FR/EN to ES/CA. My mother tongues are Spanish and Catalan. But I only have one year and a half of experience in translation. I have just started my freelance activity as a translator and teacher. But it's difficult to find clients for Spanish translations. I have tried with online platforms but some of them such as Gengo, One Hour Translation and ICanLocalize do not need more Spanish speakers at this moment.

... See more
Hi everyone,

I have a Diploma in Translation and Interpretation FR/EN to ES/CA. My mother tongues are Spanish and Catalan. But I only have one year and a half of experience in translation. I have just started my freelance activity as a translator and teacher. But it's difficult to find clients for Spanish translations. I have tried with online platforms but some of them such as Gengo, One Hour Translation and ICanLocalize do not need more Spanish speakers at this moment.

If I can ask, do you know any translation companies or online platforms where Spanish translators are still needed? Is there still anything I can do or due to the high competition it is too late to start as a Spanish translator?

Any advice or help is more than welcome. Thank you very much.

Josep
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esperantisto  Identity Verified
Local time: 05:52
חבר (2006)
מאנגלית לרוסית
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SITE LOCALIZER
Reading Proz.com's FAQ… Feb 14

…may help:
https://www.proz.com/faq/4354#4354


 

Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
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Local time: 03:52
חבר (2007)
אנגלית
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You're lacking a USP Feb 14

Josep Claret wrote:
If I can ask, do you know any translation companies or online platforms where Spanish translators are still needed? Is there still anything I can do or due to the high competition it is too late to start as a Spanish translator?

As I'm sure you know, there are vast numbers of native Spanish speakers, both in Europe and in the Americas. And very many speak English, and a good number speak French too. But, on the other hand, there's also a mountain of "stuff" that needs to be translated in these pairs. So, your requirement is clearly to be seen in the crowd. And that's what you need to concentrate on.

What can you do best? What could you do better, with some investment (e.g. training)? What sets you apart from other native Spanish speakers who speak English and French? You really need a specialisation, and you need to sing about it, loud and clear. A niche within that specialisation would be even better. In the first few months and years, it's normal to accept anything you're offered as long as you think you can do it justice. But that isn't what you should be telling potential clients. Your marketing needs to be adapted to concentrate on your specialist service offer, not on being a "generalist". You're never going to be able to compete on price with all the bored carers and retirees who don't need the money, so you need to be in the areas they'd flounder in -- texts with industry jargon terms, or ones that are super-confidential or that are critical in importance to the reader (e.g. patients) or the writer (e.g. luxury goods producers). Clients will pay a professional translator for those, not a hobby translator (not twice, anyway ).

You need a shop window. For a well-established translator, that could be their own website or an entry in a translators' organisation listing, e.g. the ATA. But for a beginner, a platform such as ProZ.com would be better as you benefit from the site's exposure in Google etc. Invest in that shop window -- in terms of time and effort as well as money -- to make your display as polished and professional as you can. It should look more like Harrods than the window of a charity shop . Keep the objective of "seeking remote job opportunities" to yourself, and get into the mindset of running a business (albeit a very small one) and providing a service. Find and cater for the needs of clients, and grow that business.

Easier said than done, I know .


philgoddard
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Josep Claret  Identity Verified
איטליה
Local time: 04:52
חבר (Apr 2020)
מקטלונית לספרדית
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TOPIC STARTER
Re: You're lacking a USP Feb 24

Hi Sheila,

First of all, sorry for my delay to reply. Thanks so much for all this information and advice.

Yes, indeed there are a lot of Spanish and French translators, but at the same time, as you said, there're plenty of documents to be translated into these languages.

I see that training is key even if we have a Bachelor's degree in Translation. Nowadays a translator should nearly be a computer engineer, and I have the impression that only technical and
... See more
Hi Sheila,

First of all, sorry for my delay to reply. Thanks so much for all this information and advice.

Yes, indeed there are a lot of Spanish and French translators, but at the same time, as you said, there're plenty of documents to be translated into these languages.

I see that training is key even if we have a Bachelor's degree in Translation. Nowadays a translator should nearly be a computer engineer, and I have the impression that only technical and finance translation has some future. And maybe medical too.

I am going to start with my website soon. It will be a website for my online teaching and translation services, as I like teaching too.

Thanks very much for your useful advice, Sheila. I'll try to do all my best.
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Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
ספרד
Local time: 03:52
חבר (2007)
אנגלית
+ ...
You can find work -- by spending time, effort and some money Feb 25

Josep Claret wrote:
Nowadays a translator should nearly be a computer engineer

That's definitely true. My tiny IT comfort zone is actually preventing me from accepting an ever-larger number of jobs. I'm winding down to retirement and can accept the situation, frustrating as it is, but a youngster certainly needs to be happy running this program, downloading that app, reformatting files, etc.

The other thing they should be is an entrepreneur. If you come across as a needy employee looking for a job, you'll be treated as such, at least by agency clients, but of course without any of the benefits of an employment contract. Of course, you need to be prepared to negotiate and at times to either agree to the client's terms or walk away, but never forget that you're the boss, so that last option -- walking away -- is always on the table. You also need to acquire the practical skills of marketing, negotiating, invoicing, payment chasing, book-keeping... and simply staying legal. So I would add training in running a business to the list of needs. Chambers of Commerce often hold cheap or even free introductory short courses.

If I might make a constructive suggestion? I advise you to look at your CV from the perspective of a busy agency PM or end-client looking for a translation yesterday. Highlight only what they really need to know. Then construct your CV in top-down order of importance, using as few words as possible. For example, language teaching experience is always worth mentioning, but no translation client needs all the details and certainly not all the dates. There's a Wiki article on writing a freelance translator's CV in the Education section of the website (which I have to disclose that I wrote ).

I'm sure there are loads of clients here on ProZ.com who'll be only too happy to trust you with a first job once you come to their attention as a serious professional. You may just have to wait a while as often the chance will only come when all their regulars are unavailable (e.g. weekends, holiday periods...). The site works in different ways: (1) we can approach clients, by means of quoting for advertised jobs and/or searching the directory and applying to agencies; and/or (2) we can make it easy for clients to find us in filtered searches, with a profile that fits their needs, and then we can encourage them to contact us with About Me and CV texts and any linked-to website that all scream "I'm your ideal translator!". The "Meeting Clients at ProZ.com" free webinar will prove really useful to you, so check it out.


 

Josep Claret  Identity Verified
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Local time: 04:52
חבר (Apr 2020)
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Good suggestions. Thanks so much! Mar 1

Hi Sheila,

Thanks for your advice, Sheila. I'd like to take some marketing and CAT tools lessons. Do I need the Proz membership to have access these trainings? I am considering to register, but I don't know if it is worth it.

Thanks for your suggestions about my cv. Yes I will try to make it shorter and more related to a translator cv. I have a Bachelor's degree in Translation, but I only have one year an
... See more
Hi Sheila,

Thanks for your advice, Sheila. I'd like to take some marketing and CAT tools lessons. Do I need the Proz membership to have access these trainings? I am considering to register, but I don't know if it is worth it.

Thanks for your suggestions about my cv. Yes I will try to make it shorter and more related to a translator cv. I have a Bachelor's degree in Translation, but I only have one year and a half of experience in this field. I had to do more regular and stable jobs to pay the expensive rents in the cities where I used to live, Paris and Dublin most of the years. Do you think it is a problem to have acquired different experiences in different jobs such as teaching or customer service? I can't hide all of them.
Thanks for the Wiki article suggestion. I will definitely have a look at it.

Two of the subjects that I would really like to specialize are health, wellness & wellbeing. That is what I would enjoy translating the most. I should maybe try to find a mentor in this fields that can help me with some advice.

Once again, thanks so much for everything, Sheila.
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Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
ספרד
Local time: 03:52
חבר (2007)
אנגלית
+ ...
Make sure clients get the message 100% clearly Mar 1

Josep Claret wrote:
I'd like to take some marketing and CAT tools lessons. Do I need the Proz membership to have access these trainings? I am considering to register, but I don't know if it is worth it.

The webinar is open to everyone, I believe, although if you opt for Plus membership you can have a more personalised session. You have to pay for most other training here but again, if you go for Plus membership, you get access to the entire training library for free (along with a CAT tool, etc.).

Thanks for your suggestions about my cv. Yes I will try to make it shorter and more related to a translator cv. I have a Bachelor's degree in Translation, but I only have one year and a half of experience in this field. I had to do more regular and stable jobs to pay the expensive rents in the cities where I used to live, Paris and Dublin most of the years. Do you think it is a problem to have acquired different experiences in different jobs such as teaching or customer service? I can't hide all of them.

As you have limited translation experience, you really need a short, single-page translation CV. If you're going to be doing freelance EFL training too, that CV would be longer, by the look of it. I didn't mean you shouldn't mention teaching, though. On the contrary, teaching languages is somewhat relevant. In your case, you taught it for vocational purposes, so the subjects are somewhat relevant too. But the client only needs to know a few words, e.g. that you've taught Spanish and French as a foreign language for general and business purposes and have nn years of experience. In the case of the other jobs, it seems to me that you've had lots of relevant language-related experience, and some that will help you with the terminology of certain sectors. But any translation client will of course be most interested in what you've translated, so that should figure first and in the most detail. What I really meant is that your potential clients will be far more interested in the WHAT than the WHO or the WHEN, and the WHERE is only of interest if you've travelled to a native-speaking country, as that shows you've been immersed in the language. Drop all the information they don't need/want to know so they can see the good stuff more clearly. You might want to have a look at my CV, as our areas are similar in many ways and my clients seem to like what they see. One thing to note is that I spent many years as an employee in administrative services and IT before heading the languages route at age 40 -- and yet you won't see either mentioned in my CV.

Two of the subjects that I would really like to specialize are health, wellness & wellbeing. That is what I would enjoy translating the most. I should maybe try to find a mentor in this fields that can help me with some advice.

Mentoring is something you may be able to find here on ProZ.com if you become a paying member. I've had no personal experience but I'm sure it can be a superb experience. The wellness sector is something that will have a lot of overlap with tourism and sport & leisure as well as the more technical medical side, and it seems to be a flourishing business area so it sounds like a good idea. As soon as you get some experience, highlight it in your CV. The more experience in your preferred subject area the better it will be for you rates-wise, until you can afford to turn down clients who come to you with boring but doable work. Meanwhile, you'll need to be less choosy .


 

Josep Claret  Identity Verified
איטליה
Local time: 04:52
חבר (Apr 2020)
מקטלונית לספרדית
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
RE: Make sure clients get the message 100% clearly Mar 3

Hi Sheila,

Once again, thanks so much for all your help, Sheila! Yes, now I realize that my cv had to be more adapted to clients' needs. I was too focused on the chronological order of my jobs (that's how I have always been taught to create a cv) instead of the main content, the "what". I hope it's a little bit more adapted now by prioritasing more the activity (the "what") instead of the chronological years. Now it only takes one only page, which looks better....
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Hi Sheila,

Once again, thanks so much for all your help, Sheila! Yes, now I realize that my cv had to be more adapted to clients' needs. I was too focused on the chronological order of my jobs (that's how I have always been taught to create a cv) instead of the main content, the "what". I hope it's a little bit more adapted now by prioritasing more the activity (the "what") instead of the chronological years. Now it only takes one only page, which looks better. I wanted to include my teaching activities because it is, and I think it will be, a very important part in my professional life. But I have deleted a lot of content from the other ones (office jobs).

My first translation experience was in 2010. Since then, I've had some, but limited, experiences. Do you think it is fine if I write: "Translator (since 2010)" even if during these last 10 years I have also been doing other different things?

And one last question, please. Any advice for the portfolio if the documents that I translated were internal and confidential and can't share them here on Proz? I don't have any translated document that I can share at this moment...

Thanks so much for all your precious help, Sheila. You are saving my life.

Josep
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Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
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Local time: 03:52
חבר (2007)
אנגלית
+ ...
Congratulations! Mar 3

In my opinion, that CV is a vast improvement.

Josep Claret wrote:
My first translation experience was in 2010. Since then, I've had some, but limited, experiences. Do you think it is fine if I write: "Translator (since 2010)" even if during these last 10 years I have also been doing other different things?

It's borderline in the circumstances to say you were a translator for all those years. However, it's an easy one to get around. If you change the section headings to "Translation" and "Teaching", you're only saying you did those activities -- which is not untrue.

And one last question, please. Any advice for the portfolio if the documents that I translated were internal and confidential and can't share them here on Proz? I don't have any translated document that I can share at this moment...

I think most of us share that problem. It's been discussed frequently on the forums. It's often best to approach someone who might benefit from a free translation that you could also use as a sample -- not anything for a commercial enterprise, but maybe the website of an association or charitable concern that you're interested in, or a TED text, or a Wiki text?

You are saving my life.

Goodness, that's a new one for my own CV: Lifesaver !


 


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