As companies increasingly turn towards international operations and expand into global markets, there is also a greater need for translators.
A carefully curated translation CV is essential if you want to stand out from the crowd and secure new projects and clients. In order to successfully compete against other translators, here are five top tips to improve your translation CV.
Use a Clear and Simple Layout
Your translation CV is the first impression that a prospective client or agency will have of you.
Therefore, it’s vital to think carefully about the layout and overall presentation of your CV. A generic, messy CV is unlikely to attract attention and may make you stand out for all the wrong reasons.
Instead, make sure that your CV is easy to read and scan.
In most cases, translation agencies will only spend about 20 seconds looking at a CV. You are much more likely to be noticed if yours is neat, well presented and formatted, as it will reflect your professionalism and attention to detail.
Aim to include important information towards the top of your CV so that it is easy to find and more likely to be read. Consider including a subtitle that includes your language pairings or specialism as well. Most importantly, ensure that your contact details are easy to find and clearly labelled.
Be Relevant and Succinct
Ideally, your CV should be succinct and simple. You want to include all the relevant information which highlights your skills and expertise, but you want to avoid overwhelming the reader with too much unnecessary information.
Include details of your relevant employment history, any relevant experience you have, as well as your education and qualifications.
Whenever a client or agency looks at your CV, it should be immediately clear what your language pairings are. Make sure that you clearly state these somewhere near the top of your CV, alongside your country of residence, especially if you also work as an interpreter.
“If you don’t have much experience yet, include any volunteering experience you have or any additional studies or courses you’ve taken which help to show your proactive and professional attitude towards your work,” says Arthur Hall, a business writer at 1day2write and Writemyx .
“Include any additional or unique skills you have that may be particularly applicable, such as any expertise with WordPress, or any coding or niche software skills that might make you stand out or allow you to multitask.”
Another important piece of information to include is a summary of any computer assisted translation (CAT) tools that you are familiar with. If you’ve mastered a particular tool or software, make this explicit.
Showcase Your Specific Skill Set
Ideally, you want to showcase your skills in a confident way which highlights your professionalism and expertise without sounding arrogant.
“Remember that as a translator you are selling a service. Use your CV as an opportunity to show prospective clients and agencies what you can do for them. Shift the focus onto your specific skill set, as opposed to your education or experience.”
“Highlight how your skills are beneficial to them and to solving their problems.”
Share any specific experience which is unique or relevant to a particular niche, especially one that you know the client is involved or interested in. Make sure that your specialisms are clearly visible near the top of your CV.
Create A Website For Your Translation CV
There’s no better way to demonstrate your ability and skills than by providing examples of your work. However, including examples in your CV can make it unnecessarily long and complicated.
Instead, consider creating a website. You can then include a link to your website on your CV which interested clients and agencies can use to get more detailed information about your work.
Treat your website as a virtual portfolio which you can continue to evolve and add to over time.
You can include examples of your translations so that clients and agencies can see your expertise and knowledge in practice.
You can also include testimonials, references or reviews from previous clients as well. This will help to reveal more about your professional attitude and the quality of your work.
If you have undertaken any additional studies, voluntary work or pursued independent projects, you could also display these on your website. Your website can be as complex or simple as you need.
Ultimately, it will help to portray your attitude towards your work and what you are like as an individual, thereby enabling prospective clients to have a clearer understanding of the type of service that you can provide.
Present Your Translation CV In Two Languages
There’s no better way to show your knowledge and capabilities in action than presenting your CV in two languages.
This will allow potential clients and agencies to have immediate examples of your skill sets and level of professionalism. In this way, you can demonstrate that you not only have the educational qualifications, but also the required practical experience that make you an ideal translator.
Make sure that you check your CV thoroughly before sending it.
As a translator, it will be expected that you have high levels of accuracy concerning spelling, grammar and punctuation.
Take your time to carefully proofread your CV and ensure that there are no inaccuracies.
If you are submitting two CVs, then make sure that the translated CV is flawless. It should be accurate and read easily and fluently.
In order to make your CV stand out from the rest, ensure that you customize it for each client or agency that you send it to.
In this way, you can guarantee that you are highlighting the most relevant skills or experience for each project.
Keep your CV short, concise and simple so that clients can find the necessary information easily.
Remember to provide links to completed translation projects or examples and, finally, check your CV for any spelling mistakes or inaccuracies.
Michael Dehoyos works as a professional translator and editor at Case Study Help and Academic Brits , where he works closely with companies of all sizes to improve their marketing strategy concepts. He regularly writes articles for Dissertation Writing Service , as well as having contributed to numerous other websites and publications. In his spare time Michael enjoys traveling and immersing himself in the culture and languages of the places he visits.