TradosIs It a Must?
The aggressive marketing campaign of
Trados makes us to believe that you can't be/stay successful/competitive on the worldwide
translation service market unless you have/use this "industry standard" TM
software. The objective of this micro-study is to check whether the above statement is
true and, if so, to what extent. I believe that my case is quite representative, since I
am a typical freelance technical/marketing translator translating about 500 thousand words
from English into Russian per year. My clients (businesses and translation companies) are
from all over the worldUSA, Israel, Japan, Belgium, UK, France, Russia etc. These
facts make my own case study typical enough for drawing valid conclusions regarding the
truthfulness of the above-mentioned marketing campaign.
From January 2002 to August
2002 I did 125 small, medium-sized, and large jobs. Only three jobs required the use of
Trados. In these 3 cases the source files were in MS Word format. The total word count of
these 3 jobs was less than 3 percent of my total workload. I did these 3 jobs using WF
3.35, and no client noticed any difference. They were sure that I had used Trados 5.0 and
were happy about my translation services.
1. The use of TM software is a must for every freelance translator working on domestic or worldwide markets. TM software increased my output/productivity 30 percent on the average, in some cases 70 percent.
2. Theoretically buying Trados should help to win a higher segment of the worldwide translation market, since only six Russian freelancers have it. However actually the business advantages of buying Trados were negligible in my case.
3. The main conclusionyou can advertise yourself as a Trados user even if actually you use Wordfast. Wordfast is completely compatible with Trados files (bilingual and TMs). No client sees a difference. The difference is significant only to your walletTrados is licensed for about USD 700, and Wordfast for free.
4. Keep your head cool when you are attacked by overly aggressive marketing experts.
Theoretically buying Trados should help
to win a higher segment of the worldwide translation market, since only six Russian
freelancers have it. However actually the business advantages of buying Trados were
negligible in my case.
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