8 months ago

14438_ITI_Career_Bulletin_2017_v2 (5)

Money matters Until

Money matters Until you’ve established a regular client base, your income may be unpredictable. Before you start out, make sure you have a buffer to tide you over (savings, part-time job or even a loan). Set yourself realistic deadlines and targets. Remember that this is a business, so you’re in it to make a living. Track your earnings and tweak your pricing to match demand. And don’t forget those non-billable hours. Your income needs to cover all of your time, not just the hours you spend translating. Don’t be shy Clients won’t be able to find you if you skulk around in the darkness. Make sure you’re visible and present yourself consistently as a professional service provider. Getting a smart website that demonstrates your expertise is a good start. Advertise in the right places (do research into your specialist area to find out where), write for client publications, speak at networking events, hand out professionally designed business cards, put together a portfolio and collect testimonials. Be your own cheerleader. Make sure you’re visible and present yourself consistently as a professional service provider Would you hire yourself? Step back and critically assess how you plan to market your services. If you’re targeting agencies, you’ll want to prepare a profile-type CV that’s tailored to each agency. Remember: you’re offering your services, not applying for a job. Most important, give your contact details, language combination(s), specialisms, relevant experience and tech tools. And get a trusted colleague to proofread it – and that goes for your accompanying email, too, which should always go to a named individual. However, if you’re targeting direct clients, that approach won’t cut it. Would you hire an architect who sent you a CV? I wouldn’t. I’d expect a professional leaflet or proposal that clearly states how I can benefit from expert services, and then a phone call or a face-to-face consultation. It should be no different for translators. Don’t go Missing In Action Once you’re on a client’s radar, you have to work hard to stay there. You can do this by being responsive: always answer emails promptly, pick up the phone and redirect calls to your mobile if you know you’re going to be away from your desk. Do whatever it takes to stay in touch. Then be pro-active: phone potential clients to check that they’ve received your emails, although be careful not to pester them. When projects start coming in, make the best impression you can: follow the instructions to the letter, send in any queries well before the deadline and deliver early. The aim is to make your clients’ lives easier and not to create any problems. 6 ITI BULLETIN CAREERS SPECIAL

starting out Spinning your web If you want to prove you’re serious about what you do, join a professional association. Qualified ITI members are listed in the online directory and they can use the letters MITI after their name because they’ve been assessed by their peers – who better or tougher! ITI members of any category can enjoy bountiful networking opportunities; they have the chance to shape the profession and they publicly vow to adhere to a strict code of conduct. What’s more, ITI members are entitled to special rates on training events that cater to every category of membership, including new entrants. Next steps If you’re thinking about going freelance in the near future, check out SUFT (Setting Up as a Freelance Translator). It’s ITI’s online course for new and upcoming freelancers – and it could be just what you need to get your career off to a flying start. While it may seem as if you have a long, hard slog ahead of you, if you do your groundwork now, you’ll be setting yourself up for a successful and satisfying career. Good luck! For more info on SUFT, go to freelance-translator CORPORATE MEMBERSHIP OF ITI Did you know that ITI also welcomes corporate members? There are three types of corporate membership, each tailored to the type of organisation joining the Institute: n Language Services Business is for businesses and organisations that provide translation and/or interpreting services. n Education is for universities who provide translation and/or interpreting qualifications. n Corporate Affiliate is for any business or organisation with an interest in translation or interpreting. This type of membership is not available to businesses or organisations which provide translation/interpreting services. n The right to market yourself as a Corporate member of ITI n The Corporate logo (above) to use on your literature, website, etc. n A subscription to ITI Bulletin n The opportunity to join ITI’s Regional Groups and Networks n Members’ rate for ITI webinars, workshops and training events n Numerous networking opportunities n Discounted attendance at industry events and conferences n Discounts on software and other services n Access the latest industry news and jobs via ITI’s social media feeds and website n Access to the Members’ Area of the ITI website, including the forums n A legal helpline offering free advice on a range of legal matters n Representation on an international level n And much more, including additional benefits tailored to each membership category, and a complimentary individual membership for each corporate member. Please contact ITI for further details. ITI BULLETIN CAREERS SPECIAL 7

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