Six Unique Advantages of Working Directly with a Freelance Translator
When you require English to Turkish translation services in a certain field, perhaps the very first thing you do is enter certain keywords in a search engine and search for a translation agency located in Turkey or elsewhere providing the kind of translation services you have in mind. This will lead you either to translation agencies claiming to be one-stop-shops or individual Turkish translators specializing in certain areas and thereby providing boutique English to Turkish translation services that fit your requirements. Both options may serve your purposes satisfactorily, however in this article I’ll talk about six unique advantages of working directly with a local Turkish freelance translator as opposed to working with a translation agency located in Turkey.
1- Direct Communication and Feedback
First of all, when you work with a local Turkish freelance translator you deal with a flesh-and-blood person whose very livelihood depends on providing you with first-class translation and localization services. A local Turkish freelancer will walk you through the process, receive your feedback and make necessary changes and additions as per your request directly without an intermediary (for instance, in the case of Turkish translation agencies, a secretary or a PM who, in all likelihood, won’t even speak a word of English), and will be responsible for his/her work even after the payment has been made.
2- Bona Fide Specialization
A freelance translator is an independent service provider who chooses his/her work on the basis of his/her areas of specialization as opposed to having the job assigned to him/her by a Project Manager who negotiates the deadline and rates with the client on translator’s behalf. For this reason, in-house translators, more often than not, are made to dabble in all kinds of subject matters with no actual expertise whatsoever, and work tight deadlines set for them. This inevitably results in poor, inaccurate and erroneous translations, which cost the client more money, embarrassment and delay.
A freelance Turkish translator, on the other hand, usually receives assignments in his/her areas of expertise, and will have more time to spend on online research and quality check to produce higher quality translations than an average in-house translator.
3- Well-Researched and Quality-Checked Translations
It is unrealistic to expect a salaried in-house translator working under contract to produce a certain word count on a weekly/monthly basis to exercise the same degree of care and diligence as a freelance translator who directly works for his/her client. In-house translators tend to regard each assignment as another task that needs to be performed as quickly as possible before they can move on to the next one and the one after that until it is time for them to go home. Since they have no contact with the client, they cannot feel the same degree of personal involvement and sense of responsibility as a freelance translator. And this affects the translation process and the overall quality of the translated text.
4- Quality over Quantity
Translation agencies, by their very nature, deal in bulk quantities (receiving assignments from their corporate clients that contain hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of words) on very tight deadlines and at very competitive rates. This means assigning to their in-house or freelance translators daily assignments that are 4 to 8 thousand words in length. My experience tells me that no translator worth his/her salt that invests time and effort into terminology and subject matter research and quality check can produce more than 3 thousand words a day. Since most Turkish translation agencies promise their clients ‘Fast Turnaround’ with almost impossible deadlines, they discourage their in-house translators to spend time on research and quality check. They also divide large projects into smaller parts to be assigned to in-house and freelance translators to meet the deadline without first establishing a uniform terminology and style requirements for each translator to follow, and this, inevitably, leads to hastily performed, inaccurate, inconsistent and, above all, poor translations.
5- Getting in Touch Despite the Time Difference
If you are located in the USA and have a time-sensitive project that needs to be translated into Turkish, you need to take into account the time difference between the USA and Turkey (which is 7 to 10 hours). While you can maintain daily communication with a US translation agency, you couldn’t do the same with a Turkish translation agency; even if you did, you couldn’t get in touch with their in-house personnel. A Turkish freelance translator located in Turkey, on the other hand, can be highly flexible and may respond to your queries in a matter of minutes despite the time difference. In most cases, it is almost impossible to maintain such communication with a Turkish translation agency. And in this business, communication is vitally important.
6- Better Quality at Cheaper Rates
The services of a freelance translator are considerably cheaper than that of an agency in Turkey or elsewhere. By working with a local Turkish freelance translator you simply cut out the middle man who is charging more money than what the translator is demanding for his/her services.