For our first guest post of 2016 we invited Mecki Testroet (left) and Erika Baker (right) of Iolante.com to tell us about a new concept in the world of translations. These translator-entrepreneurs are developing a top-ranked website for selected independent translators to join as franchisees. We invited them to tell us a little about the new concept and how CPD is an essential element.
IOLANTE: a new concept in the world of translation
Iolante Freelance Translation Services is a new concept in the world of translations. Currently in its trial phase, the directors of the company, Mecki Testroet and Erika Baker, are in the process of developing a translators’ website that is consistently on pages 1 and 2 of Google search results for a large variety of translation-related keywords. Prospective direct clients finding Iolante will then be able to search a register of independent freelance translators in their country and for their language pair and contact them directly with job offers.
At the end of the trial phase Iolante will operate as a fully-fledged franchise.
To avoid translators undercutting each other to obtain work, and to ensure a steady stream of income for our franchisees, each language pair will only be given out twice per country, once in each language direction, unless franchisees are qualified to work in both directions.
QUALIFIED TRANSLATORS WHO TAKE CPD SERIOUSLY
All Iolante translators must be members of a professional institute and abide by that institute’s code of conduct. Iolante also expects translators to take CPD seriously and not simply rely on their qualifications obtained many years ago. Franchisees must keep up to date with language developments and developments in their specialist subjects. This can be achieved by reading relevant publications, watching television and listening to radio in their working language of the country they are not living in, visits to that country etc. Social media, Skype and FaceTime make it easier than ever to keep up to date with general language developments.
Good CPD is about more than language and terminology. It includes keeping up with good business practices, bookkeeping, tax regulations, time management, effective working strategies, client acquisition, client retention, rate negotiation, project management when no agency is involved, computing skills, software developments, using the internet as a terminology research tool… the list of skills a good freelance translator should have and maintain is sheer endless.
COMPANY INTERNAL CPD ACROSS COUNTRIES: WEBINARS ARE IDEAL FOR AN INTERNATIONAL COMPANY
While an international company is limited in its abilities to help its team with their language and subject specific CPD, it can still take a lead and offer support with general business-related CPD, in particular through webinars that are accessible to people all over the world.
Iolante’s working language is English. All franchisees in all the countries the company operates in are expected to be able to communicate in English. Iolante is therefore well placed to work together with eCPD webinars and to make videos and podcasts available to all their franchisees. Once the trial phase is completed, Iolante’s directors are planning to incorporate a CPD component in all their franchise agreements.
This will encourage Iolante translators to keep abreast of changes in the world of work. Company internal CPD will give Iolante the assurance that colleagues in the UK and in Europe take their professional development seriously. Thus clients can be confident that they can trust the independent freelance translators they find through Iolante.
UK based experienced translators interested in joining the Iolante franchise should visit the Iolante franchise pages. If they find they fulfil the required criteria, they can contact Erika Baker via the website.