Poll: Is it more common for you to stop working with a client or for a client to stop sending you work?
מפרסם התגובה: ProZ.com Staff

ProZ.com Staff
צוות האתר
Sep 10, 2018

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "Is it more common for you to stop working with a client or for a client to stop sending you work?".

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Gibril Koroma
 

Christine Andersen  Identity Verified
דנמרק
Local time: 00:03
חבר (2003)
מדנית לאנגלית
+ ...
Other Sep 10, 2018

Many clients send one-off jobs.

A large number of clients are one-off clients who rarely need translations in my languages.

Some turn up again after several months or even a year or two.

The greatest volume of my work comes from regulars and some I call occasional clients, such as colleagues who outsource now and then, but many have come and gone over the years. It is hard to say when the occasional clients actually stop sending work - some go on sending Ch
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Many clients send one-off jobs.

A large number of clients are one-off clients who rarely need translations in my languages.

Some turn up again after several months or even a year or two.

The greatest volume of my work comes from regulars and some I call occasional clients, such as colleagues who outsource now and then, but many have come and gone over the years. It is hard to say when the occasional clients actually stop sending work - some go on sending Christmas cards for two or three years, even if they send no work!
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Philippe Etienne
Laura Bissio CT
Ricki Farn
 

Teresa Borges
פורטוגל
Local time: 23:03
חבר (2007)
מאנגלית לפורטוגזית
+ ...
I'm not sure Sep 10, 2018

I started translating full-time in 1985 and obviously in over 30 years I have had to face a lot of different experiences:

1. A good number of clients have been one-offs,
2. Some clients who once were very regular became irregular,
3. Two clients left me when I raised my rates some years ago,
4. Others have disappeared after a while without any explanation,
5. Three clients filed for bankruptcy,
6. I stopped working with two clients because of payment
... See more
I started translating full-time in 1985 and obviously in over 30 years I have had to face a lot of different experiences:

1. A good number of clients have been one-offs,
2. Some clients who once were very regular became irregular,
3. Two clients left me when I raised my rates some years ago,
4. Others have disappeared after a while without any explanation,
5. Three clients filed for bankruptcy,
6. I stopped working with two clients because of payment issues which needed my lawyer’s intervention,
7. I became “suddenly unavailable” for one or two clients.

I’m still working with two of my first clients: a Belgian translation agency and a French direct client (a regional organization).

That’s life!
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Anna Politikova
Philippe Etienne
Ricki Farn
Muriel Vasconcellos
 

Gibril Koroma  Identity Verified
קנדה
Local time: 18:03
חבר (2017)
מצרפתית לאנגלית
+ ...
Other Sep 10, 2018

Nobody ends the relationship. There are just regular and irregular clients.

Balvir Chand
José Henrique Lamensdorf
Philippe Etienne
Michael Harris
Debora d'Amato
Laura Bissio CT
Maria Simmen
 

Yetta Jensen Bogarde  Identity Verified
דנמרק
Local time: 00:03
חבר (2012)
מאנגלית לדנית
+ ...
I have stopped working with some clients Sep 10, 2018

- especially recently, because I have plenty of work anyway, i.e. lots of requests, so why keep the clients that don't offer good payment terms, or have too complicated procedures to their own benefit, but not translator-friendly?

I have decided I am too old to waste my time on those.

And one more thing: I believe it is in the interest of all translators to keep an acceptable standard and resist the pressure from large agencies who are only out to secure the largest mar
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- especially recently, because I have plenty of work anyway, i.e. lots of requests, so why keep the clients that don't offer good payment terms, or have too complicated procedures to their own benefit, but not translator-friendly?

I have decided I am too old to waste my time on those.

And one more thing: I believe it is in the interest of all translators to keep an acceptable standard and resist the pressure from large agencies who are only out to secure the largest market share for themselves.

[Edited at 2018-09-10 09:47 GMT]
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Else Agersnap
Anna Politikova
Philippe Etienne
Christine Andersen
Angus Stewart
Teresa Borges
Liena Vijupe
 

José Henrique Lamensdorf  Identity Verified
ברזיל
Local time: 21:03
מאנגלית לפורטוגזית
+ ...
נזכור
Different causes, so I'm not sure Sep 10, 2018

I stop working with a client on money matters. Either they give me a hard time to get paid, or they obdurately want to force me to lower rates and/or extend payment terms beyond an acceptable level.

Clients stop sending me work on account of having no requests for the services/language pairs I can provide, or when they have found cheaper vendors that don't cause them too much trouble.

Some clients return years after our last contact, asking me whether I'm "still" transl
... See more
I stop working with a client on money matters. Either they give me a hard time to get paid, or they obdurately want to force me to lower rates and/or extend payment terms beyond an acceptable level.

Clients stop sending me work on account of having no requests for the services/language pairs I can provide, or when they have found cheaper vendors that don't cause them too much trouble.

Some clients return years after our last contact, asking me whether I'm "still" translating. New clients pop up saying that people I have no recollection of have emphatically recommended me. Other clients contact me 2-5 times a year with assignments. And, of course, there are those who send me work every week. This leads me to believe that I'm serving them well.
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Angus Stewart  Identity Verified
הממלכה המאוחדת
Local time: 23:03
חבר (2011)
מצרפתית לאנגלית
+ ...
Re-evaluating my strategy Sep 10, 2018

Yetta J Bogarde wrote:

- especially recently, because I have plenty of work anyway, i.e. lots of requests, so why keep the clients that don't offer good payment terms, or have too complicated procedures to their own benefit, but not translator-friendly?

I have decided I am too old to waste my time on those.

And one more thing: I believe it is in the interest of all translators to keep an acceptable standard and resist the pressure from large agencies who are only out to secure the largest market share for themselves.

[Edited at 2018-09-10 09:47 GMT]


My own situation is similar, in respect that lately I have noticed that I have been turning down about 2/3 of the work I get offered simply because I have been working at full capacity and can't squeeze any more into my available working time. Under such circumstance it makes sense to re-evaluate my client base, but for the time being I have decided to call a moratorium upon dumping the least favoured of my clients as Brexit is looming on the horizon and who knows how that will disrupt the translation market and affect my workflow.

Long term my aim is to reposition myself into a niche within my existing translation market. I recently discussed my new concept and also the background that made me suitable to execute it with one of my clients and they said that based on what I had told them I would be their "go to" translator for that type of work. This makes me think that whereas many clients would like to lure us in with the offer of loads of work, the strategy I would like to pursue is to become increasingly specialized and source my work as the "go to" translator for my niche area from a very broad base of clients when they have projects that match my specific niche profile in order to spread the commercial risk better. That would tend to suggest that in the long term dumping clients as I have done in the past is no longer the route for me to go down, with the exception of the non-payers.

I have also been laying the groundwork which may eventually lead to a business model more focused upon direct clients by meeting people informally within the niche part of the industry I hope to target and hopefully by the time I am ready to move forward and start implementing my idea they will know me well enough for them to be attracted by my expertise, business proposition and trust me personally to handle the work, as it is one of the few industry segments left that is still very traditional and based very much upon personal contacts and meeting up face to face. This makes me think that it will be a nicer and more enjoyable area in which to work.

[Edited at 2018-09-10 10:55 GMT]


Yetta Jensen Bogarde
Christine Andersen
 

Mario Freitas  Identity Verified
ברזיל
Local time: 21:03
חבר (2014)
מאנגלית לפורטוגזית
+ ...
It varies a lot Sep 11, 2018

Some clients disappear, but then one day appear again. Some simply disappear. Some close their doors, some are bought by another company...
More commonly, the client disappears.
But I have "dumped" a few Brazilian clients who refused to negotiate a raise after a couple of years. Goodbye to you. Never regretted any of them.


 

Muriel Vasconcellos  Identity Verified
ארצות הברית
Local time: 15:03
חבר (2003)
מספרדית לאנגלית
+ ...
Unsure -- too many reasons Sep 11, 2018

Many possibilities, pretty much for the same reasons that Teresa gave:
- One-off assignments
- The person who was sending me work got a different job (that has happened several times).
- The client went out of busines.s
- One of my best direct clients used to give me work all the time until a new supervisor decided to farm out most of their translations to agencies. When I heard what the agencies were paying, I decided I didn't want to lower my rate that much. I still hea
... See more
Many possibilities, pretty much for the same reasons that Teresa gave:
- One-off assignments
- The person who was sending me work got a different job (that has happened several times).
- The client went out of busines.s
- One of my best direct clients used to give me work all the time until a new supervisor decided to farm out most of their translations to agencies. When I heard what the agencies were paying, I decided I didn't want to lower my rate that much. I still hear from them occasionally. Last year they gave me a 150-page job. I've heard from them several times this year, but in all but one case I was already overbooked. Maybe they got tired of being turned down.
- The particular project I was working on was not renewed.
- I know I lost 2 clients when I changed my email and didn't let them know. I was really busy at the time, but later I regretted that I didn't stay in touch.
- And yes, some of them have asked me to lower my rates and I refused -- or they wrote me off because they found someone who charged less.

[Edited at 2018-09-11 05:56 GMT]
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