Job application series: Part one – ‘Hier me?’

December 16, 2014 by Alison Tunley

Get a Free Quote

Our Accreditations

  • ATA Logo
  • ATC Logo
  • BSI 9001 Logo
  • BSI 9001 Logo
  • DIN EN 15038 Logo

Recent Updates

Dog-tired and other doggie expressions

Having recently got sucked in to the joy of cycling, I have found myself adding long weekend bike rides to my existing schedule of regular runs and swims. That’s how I ended up cranking out a 60 mile… Read More


“Perfection level is not to high from me…”

Believe it or not this is from an application for a job…

We receive between 40 and 60 unsolicited translator applications every day. A lot are professionally presented and to the point. Quite a few are not, though. Here are some of the most entertaining from genuine email applications received this week. Names have been removed to protect the innocent (or clueless). In a follow-up post, I will be dealing with some of the issues that may be slightly less obvious.

The quote in the title is a subject line of an email. These subject lines are particularly crucial. A good one can encourage an agency to think of you as a truly professional translator. A bad one lands you straight in the bin. Or here. Which is worse.

Here are a few more:

“Professional Naive French Tanslator 24/7 available”

Naïve indeed. Professionally so. But then, what do I know about professional tanslators? Cut the guy some slack: he tanslates 24/7.

“Ability to establish and maintain good working.”

I know, I know: not everybody is a native English speaker. On the other hand, this one also proposes to translate INTO English.

“Contact me to provide you with my special services”

Hmmm….. I waited to open this one until I was sure nobody could see my screen. Imagine my relief (disappointment?) when I realised the woman was only selling translation services after all, just very, very special ones.

And talking about special:

“Translation is my special world”

Yes dear, that’s really nice. Is it time for your meds yet?

“German father and an English mother”

Yes, great, I have such a set of parents, too. Now, why exactly did you email me?

And then there are the plain cryptic ones, like:

“I offer bestowal without confines …”

Limitless gifts? I’m in!

And sometimes one wonders if it’s a case of near total ignorance of the English language, or great comic genius:

“I am ensures accuracy of the service provided…”

Yes sir, as long as it’s not translation services, I might even believe you.

And along the same line, one that I receive most weeks, one way or another:

“Spanish<>English transltor”

Along with its even more confused sibling:

Shanghai Interpreter Trasnlator”

I am often told I should be kinder. So here is my attempt: well done for including all the right letters. The next stage is to try and assemble them into what we call ‘words’!

And, yes, sometimes, quite occasionally, I actually make it past a – well-written- subject line, open the email, and then something like this happens:


Sorry, I am not a native speaker of Spanish, but, nevertheless, I can provide quality translations from English to Spanish.”

And a bit further down:

“I have not obtained an official translator / linguist degree, but I still provide high-quality language services.”

By which time I obviously wish the title had been as wrong as the above. I will never get those five minutes back that I spent reading that email.

For help on what to do and what not do when applying for freelance translator positions check out our next articles!


Share This Post


Add Comment

Andreea Mohan

Taylor Wessing LLP

We are very pleased with the services provided by Rosetta Translations. They always send very prompt responses, transparent prices and deliver their work product at the highest standards.

More Testimonials

Jackie Brook, Sr Product Manager

American Express

Thank you very much for your prompt and efficient service.

More Testimonials

Conor McLarnon

Maximus Crushing and Screening

I have translated multiple projects with Rosetta now and I cannot emphasise how great the service they provide is; quality, turnaround time and pricing is the best I have found yet. The qualities of translations we receive are of the highest standard and communication from the start of a project to the end is consistent.

For a company looking into translations, I would highly recommend Rosetta as first pick, as the support and service they provide is first class.

More Testimonials

Get a Free Quote

© 2024 All Rights Reserved
Rosetta Translation, 133 Whitechapel High St, London E1 7QA · 0207 248 2905