The working environment is changing together with the job search. And, even though the traditional application system (such as sending a CV spontaneously or replying to a search) have proven to be efficient even in the present, the number of companies that are open to finding new talents in less traditional ways is increasing.
For that reason, if you are a translator and are not currently working, or if you are a translation student looking to have your first work experience, you should not miss the opportunity to make first-hand contact with the main representatives of the industry. Events like the next Translation Industry Conference in Latin America (CLINT) —which will take place in Córdoba— may be just what you need.
By attending a conference like CLINT you will not only have the possibility to contact HR experts directly —many recruiters working for language services providers will be there, including myself—, but you will also have a big chance of getting valuable information regarding what companies look for in a candidate.
The following constitute some of the advantages of beginning your job search inside an industry event:
Direct Approach. Attending an event where the vast majority of industry representatives are present helps you build a relationship with high-profile professionals —people responsible for Human Resources departments and even CEOs of big companies— who are not always as accessible in job interviews.
Volume. Looking for a job in the traditional way implies the repetition of a never-ending cycle involving uploading CVs, follow-ups and several interviews with each and every company we would like to apply for. Conversely, events like this gives us the opportunity to find all the interested people at the same time and place.
More Information. Having contact with people that work for major companies and who are in charge of the decision-making process regarding human resources may be key to acquiring a lot of information about current market needs in order to update your profile. Being able to talk directly with recruiters and directors allows you to inquire about positions available and what they value the most when hiring new staff for their organizations.
Stress-free Environment. Job interviews may be stressing. However, meeting people in an event may be an opportunity to showcase your personality in a more casual environment where you will be able to convey your skills, which are sometimes overshadowed by the typical anxiety of a job interview.
Networking. Even if you don’t manage to find the right job offer, being in touch with other translators and industry professionals is a huge chance to exchange ideas, start new projects and do some networking with your peers.
Constant Learning. Attending a congress together with the main figures of the business who give conferences and trainings is one of the best ways of being up-to-date and learn about the present of the industry you belong to. Also, this way you can add value to your CV and be one step closer to your new job.
What do translation and content localization companies look for?
This industry is aware of the challenges posed by technological advances. As technology is increasingly taking part in the production process, those called soft skills –people skills which are independent from technical knowledge— are becoming more and more valuable as they are a major factor for developing a successful career in any work environment. As a result, the ideal candidate is the one who can balance both technical knowledge and specialization together with social and teamwork skills, all of these added to digital competences.
In order to achieve a positive exchange with a potential employer, some of the knowledge, skills and attitudes usually required from a translator are the following:
Specific Language Knowledge. Like in every industry, to know the essence of the work to be performed is core and as a consequence the first requirement is to have a wide language knowledge. Profiles that stand out are those that include a specific degree in Translation or Literature.
Research Skills. Projects are dynamic and often involve technical challenges regarding the content that has to be processed. As a result, candidates are expected to be able to do the research needed for any unknown term or concept so translations can be as faithful as possible to their source text.
Specialization. The more specialized the translator is in a particular area (medical, technical, legal, marketing, IT), the more likely it is that he or she will be called up for a translation project according to his or her area of expertise.
Technology Skills. Due to the ever-lasting influence of technology in the translation industry, CAT tools management is increasingly important for the performance of the required tasks, since they allow faster translations, greater consistency in terminology and style, the possibility to translate by segment or phrases instead of word by word and, finally, save the translations made in a translation memory. As a consequence, the translator works at a higher speed and complying with all quality standards.
Communication. As the majority of translators work remotely, it is important that they have the ability to communicate in a clear and fluent way with all of the team members with whom they are sharing a task with. Communication skills are key to follow the news and updates regarding projects.
Commitment. Due to the fact that translators’ work may be part of a large project involving multiple languages and tight demanding schedules, the responsibility towards the task, once accepted, is of a great value. This ensures a timely delivery. Should any contingency that prevents delivery on time arise, it must be duly notified in a timely fashion and in due form.
Flexibility. Working for a large company means to constantly work in cooperation with the client. As a result, sometimes we encounter last-minute challenges (changes regarding deadlines, source text or CAT tool) which require from translators the ability to adapt to changing conditions.
Productivity. The ability to deliver on time results and with sustained quality is key to build a long-term relationship with an employer. The more productive and effective the translator is, the greater the chances are that a company will contact him or her again for future projects.
If you liked my article and want to know more about what LSP recruiters look for, or if you like languages and want to help big companies develop their global contents, please visit Go Global’s stand at CLINT. We look forward to hearing from you!