Risk management in translation: ProZ.com knowledge base for translators, translation companies, and others in the language industry 2

Every business type is exposed to risks influenced by numerous factors and the translation and interpretation business is no exception. Regardless of the type of activity involved, everyone either offering language services or looking for language service providers is exposed so several types of risks that should be acknowledged if a reliable and successful service provider-outsourcer relationship is desired.

With this in mind, ProZ.com has been creating content and developing new tools with the purpose of helping translators, translation companies, and others in the language industry to learn about the different risks involved in doing business online and how to prevent them.

One of these resources, and probably the most widely used by service providers when assessing risks, is the ProZ.com Blue Board. The Blue Board record is the complete, searchable database of records made up of feedback entries posted by language service providers in connection with outsourcers they have worked with. For service providers, the Blue Board record has proved to be a great tool for assessing the reliability of specific outsourcers before accepting a job offer from them. For outsourcers, being listed in the Blue Board record with a good number of positive entries from service providers represents a great marketing tool. Outsourcers with a good Blue Board record report a higher degree of trust and shortened project launch cycles among those service providers who reference the Blue Board. More information about using the Blue Board record is available here.

Another great source of information in connection with business risks in translation is the ProZ.com Wiki. The ProZ.com translation industry wiki is an ever-evolving collection of articles about relevant, industry related topics, written and updated regularly by translators themselves. In this wiki, there are several articles on risk management, addressed both to language professionals and to outsourcers. Risk management-related wiki articles include the following:

For more information about the ProZ.com industry wiki, visit this page.

A recently released scam alert center is another potentially valuable resource for those seeking to manage risk when it comes to false job offers and other scams. The Translator scam alert center is an area used to provide organized, concise information regarding false job offers or requests and other scams which may be aimed at or are affecting language professionals and outsourcers. Information provided in the center is based in part on reports made by ProZ.com members through the online support system and in the ProZ.com Scams forum, and ProZ.com members have the option of subscribing to receive useful news and alerts of new scams as they are detected. The scam alert center is available here.

Finally, ProZ.com also offers its members a free webinar on “Risk management for translators and interpreters” on a monthly basis. This training session enumerates and explains risk management procedures that translators and interpreters should follow as part of their everyday professional activities. The schedule for these webinars is available here.

Regardless of the number of years a service provider or an outsourcer has been in the translation industry, risks are everywhere when doing business. However, the above-listed resources and tools have been made available by ProZ.com to promote not just professional practices, but also clear and concise information on the steps that should be taken to avoid risks when participating in the language industry. If you have any questions about these tools and resources, or if you need assistance with using them, contact site staff through the support center.

10 strategies to expand your translation business: Part 5 Reply

This is the fifth post (already!) in the ten-part series that provides information on ten different strategies for staying competitive and growing your translation business.

Fifth strategy: Expanding your knowledge

Knowledge acquisition and business expansion go hand in hand in the translation market. Improving translation and business skills is a must for any language professional, specially if they want to meet new clients and increase their income.

Professional translators should never stop looking for new ways to expand the list of services they can offer to clients, learning how to use new translation tools and software, for instance, and constantly improving their language skills, and expanding their knowledge on translation essentials and theory.

How can I expand my knowledge at ProZ.com?

ProZ.com offers different types of training courses, webinars and educational resources available to translators and interpreters. Take training courses on:

Learn more about ProZ.com training sessions here.

What other ways of expanding your translation and business knowledge do you know? Have you ever taken a translation-related training course? Were you able to apply what you learned later on?

Make sure you check the next post in this series on Staying abreast of industry news and trends, to be posted in the next few days.

Guest blog post: “The value and importance of a translation industry wiki”, by Niraja Nanjundan 1

I am happy to present the Translator T.O.’s first guest blogger post, this week by member Niraja Nanjundan, on the subject of the translation industry wiki. Niraja has been a regular contributor to the ProZ.com Wiki, and it is nice to have her here to explain how she sees the concept of a translation industry wiki:



The value and importance of a translation industry wiki, by Niraja Nanjundan

In an interview with the BBC, on the occasion of the tenth anniversary of Wikipedia in January of this year, Jimmy Wales, founder of the well-known online encyclopaedia described it as a “temple of the mind,” a place of learning, discussion and debate. Seen from that perspective, the launch of ProZ.com’s translation industry wiki is significant, as it represents the start of an online encyclopaedia or knowledge base aimed specifically at the translation industry. The ProZ.com Wiki will be a collaborative effort of translators and language professionals covering all aspects of the profession from the technical aspects of translation and interpreting to the business side of the industry.

Officially launched last year, the wiki is divided up into several sections, including the art and craft of translation and interpreting, money matters and business issues and ProZ.com members have already been adding valuable contributions. The forum threads attached to each wiki article have proven to be very popular areas for discussion and debate, such as this discussion on the Translator Career Path. That said, more involvement from users and members will be required for the wiki to really take off as a viable resource for the translation industry. What then are the benefits of this type of specialised wiki and in what ways does it differ from an article knowledge base or a translation blog?

  • A wiki contribution is not a one-time effort by one author. It is a collaborative effort with contributions from as many different people who are interested in contributing, and is continuously growing. This means that it can be updated as things change and develop in a particular area or field.
  • As already mentioned, a wiki article can encourage discussion and debate. The fact that anyone can edit and change the content means that if one person disagrees with another person’s contribution, he/she can easily change it, which can give rise to a discussion on the issue. The forum attached to each wiki article on ProZ.com encourages this type of interaction even more.
  • A wiki can also be a platform for raising awareness on issues and creating transparency. The ProZ.com Wiki has a section on Detecting and reacting to false job offers and other scams, for example, an issue that is very important to many of us who increasingly use the internet for our work, and that has been of concern to many colleagues.
  • A translation industry wiki can also be an important and valuable resource for students and those starting out in the profession, as it can include articles and tips on what the profession involves, how to get started, rates and other issues a novice translator may have questions about. ProZ.com’s wiki already has contributions on Establishing yourself as a freelance translator, “Marketing for translators” and Determining your rates and fees as a translator.

Although wiki articles do not give their contributors as much online exposure as a KudoZ answer or a forum posting may, they still provide an opportunity to hone one’s writing skills and share knowledge about topics that may be of interest to colleagues and of value to the translation industry as whole. And as with KudoZ and the forums, the wiki and its dedicated forums also offer a platform for networking, debating pertinent issues and raising awareness.



Thanks to Niraja for the insightful contribution! The ProZ.com Wiki can be found under the Education menu tab on any ProZ.com page, or at this direct link: http://wiki.proz.com/wiki/index.php