Outsourcing translation to Budapest/Outsourcing von Übersetzungen nach Budapest

Artikel mit Links in Spiegel Online: Dow Jones lässt seit Januar einige Übersetzungen ins Deutsche in Budapest machen.

An article in Spiegel Online is causing concern to translators into German on at least two mailing lists. Alfa Press, a translation firm in Budapest, founded in late 2003, has since January been translating some financial news items for Dow Jones (in Eschborn) and now has a two-year contract. The typical translator is German, male and about thirty and has happened to find himself in Budapest.

There are six photos. One shows seven translators on four sides of an arrangement of computer tables. They are so cramped that they appear to have no room for reference works, although in another photo it looks as if one may have a glossary, which is lying at right angles between her and the keyboard. The room measures 24 m².

The job requires a one-paragraph news item to be done in under 15 minutes. Dow Jones looked in Romania and Serbia, which would have been cheaper, but it is paying more in Budapest, where there are a number of native German translators and German-speaking Hungarians.

It sounds as if the translators work almost a 12-hour day. In contrast, I’ve heard of people translating into German for the Financial Times Deutschland in shifts: a translator is paid for a shift whether or not translation work falls due, and in this way it’s guaranteed that there is someone available 24 hours a day.

Not only the prices (20% to 50% under those in Germany) are important, but the short notice period, between two weeks and four weeks. So these are not freelances (outsourcing often refers to giving work to freelances).

I think these must be examples (German).

3 thoughts on “Outsourcing translation to Budapest/Outsourcing von Übersetzungen nach Budapest

  1. >There are six photos. One shows seven translators on four sides of an arrangement of computer tables. They are so cramped that they appear to have no room for reference works, although in another photo it looks as if one may have a glossary, which is lying at right angles between her and the keyboard. The room measures 24 m².

    The job requires a one-paragraph news item to be done in under 15 minutes.

  2. Probably excellent training – I’m afraid I missed out on that. I could do with the ability to produce forty pages a day (I know you’ll tell me to dictate).

  3. Yes 40-50 pp dictated a day are no problem with a VRS – voice recognition system – or, better still in my experience, ex-trans. agency/ legal/ medical audio-typists averaging 110 words into-Eng. a minute = 12,000 words a day, either using Digital Dictation Processors PC-to-PC or by telephone transcription.

    An expensive business and erosion of profit margins, indeed, but allows Chinese Take-Away, conveyor-belt turn-round when most people – except trained touch-tpyists – can dictate 7x faster than they can type.

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