Have you just joined the translation market? Maybe you are still trying to understand how it works, where you can offer your services and what to focus on to be successful.
You have made a great professional decision. The market is booming with opportunities in different areas of translation. You can choose your favorite activity.
Learn more about the translation market, job opportunities and how to be even more successful.
It’s booming! According to the 2018 Language Services Market report by Common Sense Advisory, the global translation market is worth USD 46.52 billion, equivalent to BRL 192 million (BRL 4.12 foreign exchange rate on 09.03.2018)
In addition to its high value, it is interesting to note how the market has evolved over the years. Check out market evolution from 2009 to 2018. Numbers are expressed in dollars, in Brazilian reals (approximately) based on the 09.03.2018 foreign exchange rate, and in growth percentage:
2009: USD 23.50 billion / BRL 96.99 billion
2010: USD 26.30 billion / BRL 108.54 billion / +11.90%
2011: USD 28.34 billion / BRL 116.96 billion / +7.76%
2012: USD 33.05 billion / BRL 136.40 billion / +16.62%
2013: USD 34.78 billion / BRL 143.54 billion / +5.23%
2014: USD 37.19 billion / BRL 153.49 billion / +6.93%
2015: USD 38.16 billion / BRL 157.49 billion / +2.61%
2016: USD 40.27 billion / BRL 166.20 billion / +5.53%
2017: USD 43.08 billion / BRL 177.80 billion / +6.98%
2018: USD 46.52 billion / BRL 192.01 billion / +7.99%
Growth was higher in some months compared to others, but it’s interesting to see that growth was consistent, i.e. the professional translation market is more and more attractive each day.
It is as if the translation service market in 2018 turned over an average of USD 127.45 million (BRL 526.02 million) per day, which is a really significant number, confirming market strength.
Additionally, according to statistical data, the translation market is expected to reach USD 56.18 billion in 2021, equivalent to BRL 231.87 billion. So, the growth rate should still be a reality in the years to follow.
Translators can perform different activities. Also, this is one of the reasons why the translation market is so attractive and learning more about the translation profession might be an extra motivation.
Translators can work both with writing, such as books, scientific papers and other types of documents, and speaking, such as simultaneous interpreting in events or private interpreting in congresses and business meetings.
This offers a widely diversified field for professional translators. Translation services are sought after by multinational companies, publishing houses, translation agencies, dubbing and subtitling studios, among other businesses.
If you have ever thought about working with movie translation, but would also appreciate an opportunity to work as a business or celebrity interpreter, or take part in the translation of a book by your favorite author, this is the right profession for you.
First of all, translators should fully master their native language and at least one other language. If you are a professional translator already you know how things work. If you are a beginner, you should receive professional training.
You don’t need a specific degree to work with translation, although it might be extremely useful. Those interested in the segment can pursue a Bachelor’s Degree in Translation and Interpreting. But other degrees are acceptable too, like a Language degree.
It’s important to stress that translation degrees are not the only tools that help future translators get qualified and secure better job positions.
There are several types of translation – each one with its own peculiarities – and technical translation is one of the most popular ones. As the name indicates, this type of translation is focused on technical subjects that require the attention of experts.
For example, knowing the language pair is not enough to translate a scientific paper about physics. The professional must know physics to be able to understand the terminology and decide on the most adequate translations.
Therefore, holding a degree in other fields of expertise can also be helpful for translation professionals. Additionally, translations targeting specific subjects tend to be more expensive than conventional ones.
Compensation is one of the most important topics for those who want to become a translator and salaries are competitive. The mean monthly wage of a translator is BRL 2,275, but this number can increase according to experience and qualification.
Translators can work for companies, including translation agencies, publishing houses, dubbing studios or multinational corporations, or as self-employed professionals, also known as freelancers. This will depend on the preferences of each translator.
Distinguishing characteristics also influence compensation. Experts in technical translations, sworn translations and less common languages usually have higher wages.
The translator career is great for those who love languages and want to have different job options. Translators are also able to access movies, TV shows, books and other contents first hand in their original language.
If this sounds interesting to you, then start searching for job opportunities. Whether working for a translation agency as a freelancer or for other types of businesses, translators find strong incentives to pursue their careers.