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ATA's The Savy Newcomer published a summary of the ATA Translation and Interpreting Services Survey by Shawn E. Six on October 3 and I'm here to talk about some of the insights we can take from it. Remember: That means that exceptions may occur. While the Survey itself is used as a benchmark to compare yourself and your agencies to your peers, we can also take a few important notes to help guide us on our efforts to improve our quality of life. Respondent Demographics: The majority of people with primary employment in linguistic services are women, äbout 70%. Most, 68%, are not ATA certified. Roughly 53% of the respondents have been working for 16 or more 16 years in linguistics. That would suggest that getting an ATA certification makes you stand out, that women are more likely to pursue a career in linguistics, and that people tend to stick to this area of expertise once engaged. There is a good amount of newcomers to refresh the pool, but not too many (which means there might be a scarcity of linguistic service professionals in a few decades). Compensation: The figures suggest that full-time freelancers have a general tendency to gain as much as a full-time employee. Part-Time freelancers, however, gain about half as much as Part-Time Employees. The likely reason for that is that without the time dedicated to elevating your career, part-time freelancers have more difficulties in blooming their business, getting a good reputation, and finding the best clients. The conclusion: if you are going freelancing as your primary business, you're better off dedicating yourself entirely to it if you can. Also, educators and government employees tend to be either in the middle or the worst side of the spectrum. Government employment may be safer, but less profitable and more complicated to achieve. Certification and Credentials: Should come as no surprise, but being certified and possessing credentials allow you a greater income of about 20% higher compensation. That may also be the case because some jobs and companies are restricted to people who own certifications of some level. While credentials are not necessarily a good measurement of ability, looks matter, and presenting yourself as certified helps you find more high-level jobs. Depending on where you stand in your career, investing in a certification is sound. Compensation Trend: Most respondents, about 44% said their income have been increasing. A small portion, 23%, claimed to have been decreasing, and nearly 33% declared no change. These numbers are similar to any other profession: meaning that you have to be responsible for topping your game somehow no matter where you stand. There is nothing dying in the translation business so far. Education: Levels in education vary a lot, and that's mostly due to how long people have been working in this industry. Hard to know what to make of this, but the results would suggest that the people who stay for longer in the business also take greater specialized education. Translation Volume: On average, translators get 2,855 words done per day. That seems like a low ceiling--can you aim above that to stand out? Translation Income: 3/4 of the income comes from translation itself, the rest from editing and proofreading jobs. Look for opportunities everywhere, but translations is where the money flows the most. Can you create a translation+ service? Interpreting Services: Only 44% and 42% of Interpreters offered Sight and Phone interpreting respectively. Whether there are many opportunities for those or not is another matter, but you might want to start offering those kinds as well to broaden your job pool. And that's what I managed to sort from that Summary. Did I miss anything? Let me know. I hope you found it useful in some way; it might help you focus your efforts from now on.
Vova posted a topic in Smartcat talksAs you know, we are giving webinars almost every week. We also have quite a few step-by-step instructions written down, and even some video tutorials. This got us thinking: What type of content do you guys actually prefer? Are you of the reading type or do you prefer watching short videos? Or maybe detailed one-hour webinars work the best for you? Vote on the poll above, and make sure to comment on your choice. We want to make learning the ropes of translation and translation technology easier for you! P.S. Thanks to @Faustina for the idea to post this survey!