Useful tools for translators (II)
When I started my blog back in 2015, one of the most liked post was (FREE) useful tools for translators. In that post I suggested and briefly explained some of the tools I was using at that moment and I which I found the most useful.
Today, I bring you another post with some other useful tools which I consider essential for freelance translators. And I hope you find them useful too!
- LinkedIn: I know it may sound obvious for some of you, but I know a lot of people and freelance translators that do not have a profile in the biggest professional network. I consider it essential, especially for freelance translators, as a way to present ourselves and services. Also, there is a feature in which you can translate your profile into other languages, gaining more visibility and reaching more potential clients.
- Become a member of a professional translator association: this is not exactly a tool, but these associations generally offer some benefits when you become a member. These benefits are very useful, especially if they offer legal help, since unfortunately, at some point we may need it. It is also a good way to demonstrate that we are professional translators with qualifications because they normally require some specific qualifications to become a member. By doing so, they try to regulate this profession and supports translators with professional qualifications.
- Paying a membership to Payment Practices (or any other database of translators’ clients): I think we do not realise how important is becoming a member of client’s database for translators regarding their payment practices until you really need it. Unfortunately, we generally need it when we realise we have worked for a client that looks like is not going to pay us. To try to prevent us from working for non-paying clients (both translation companies and direct clients), we can use these databases to do a research about a potential client before accepting a job. So my advice would be to invest on a database like Payment Practices or Proz’s Blue Board.
- A diary: for me, it is an indispensable tool and I have talked before about it. I think that having a diary or calendar is something essential for a freelance translator. So it is having good organisational skills, but we can work on it. Being freelance means doing a lot of things in a day, week, month and year. So it is essential to have a diary to write down our projects, deadlines, to-do lists, blog posts, meetings, calls, etc. As a tip: have the same diary both for your personal and professional life. This will help you to keep organised your freelance work along with your personal appointments (medical appointments, meet with friends, etc.). If you prefer to have an electronic diary to synchronise it with all your devices, you can use Google Calendar, iCalendar or Outlook Calendar.
- Good accounting tool: you can do it very easily using an Excel spreadsheet or specialised software. There are both free and paid for software, but they are very useful to help us with our accounts and to keep the records of our business. A feature in some of them is that you can create invoices using the software and they are added to the list of clients and payments, so you will never have to use different software for your accounting.
Do you use other tools to help you with your translation business? What are the most useful for you?
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