The short answer is – it depends.
As the types of text I translate usually involve highly specialized medical terminology, time to research each term to ensure the contextually correct one is used must be factored into my translation deadline and pricing.
For this reason I operate on the basis of a project fee for each translation project. By giving you a quote which includes all work to be performed on your text you are assured that your text will be meticulously researched and all terms verified by checking for in-context uses in the relevant sphere. (Where possible – e.g. for a clinical trial for a New Drug Application, collocations and drug names may be new, and therefore not found in existing documentation.)
The project fee depends on a number of factors, including:
Complexity of terminology – For example, translations of texts involving genetics and aimed at an audience of specialized medical researchers involve more complicated terminology than texts such as customer complaints and therefore be somewhat more expensive.
Ease of access to text – Is the text available in an easy to process format, such as Microsoft Word, Excel? Or is the text for translation available only in PDF form (requiring me to process with OCR software and reformat) or in fax form? In general, the quicker I can start translating your text, the quicker you receive your translated text. For more complicated formatting, the translation takes longer (simply because I have to process and format the text before I can even begin to translate it), and is therefore somewhat more expensive.
My availability and the urgency of your request – If I am fully booked, I can schedule your translation to be completed on a future deadline (e.g. if I am booked for the next two weeks, I can translate your text during the third week and give you a deadline for then) or, depending on the size and complexity of your project, it may be possible for me to rearrange my other projects to give you an earlier deadline. This will incur a surcharge on the standard project fee.