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Freelancing on Elance etc.
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Teedub Offline
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Post: #101
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
Thanks everyone, great advice. BB, you have been Beyond helpful (excuse the pun) and if we ever meet, I owe you a pint or three. Thousand!

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10-08-2013 02:35 PM
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Post: #102
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
(10-08-2013 12:54 PM)bojangles Wrote:  Thanks BB i'll start putting $3 per 100 words

Right on, man - just make sure you're bidding a bunch of jobs still rather than just doing a small handful and giving up on that rate.

If you want some feedback on your bid template, feel free to pm me.

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(This post was last modified: 10-08-2013 03:50 PM by Beyond Borders.)
10-08-2013 03:50 PM
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w00t Offline
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Post: #103
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
Quote:Fixed price is essentially figured out that way. I'll often even break it down in the bid, listing how many articles, avg word count, price per article, my rate, and then final bid. That way it's all clear as day exactly why I charge what I'm charging that much. This also leaves no suspicion of your bid being generic (even if it kind of is lol).

In other bids, especially if they suggest a per article price that is reasonable or I can figure their budget based on their estimate of what the job will cost (often at the top of Elance jobs), then I'll just state a per article or total for the job rate, without breaking it down. These ones seem more vague but they already appear to know what they want, so why complicate things?

Love it. I think Im gonna try this as well. I work pretty fast so I could get some really decent rates this way.

Quote:Exactly!

But great job on those numbers anyways.

Thx man, I wouldnt get this kind of money without your help!

Quote:She really does know her shit...

Definitely!

Quote:Is that the training we were talking about or something else?

Yeah its the Jeff Walker thing. Today a prospect asked me if I have experience in online marketing so of course I leveraged the fact that Im getting training from one of the top guys in this field right now.
(This post was last modified: 10-08-2013 06:42 PM by w00t.)
10-08-2013 06:38 PM
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bojangles Offline
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Post: #104
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
Hey guys, anyone done transcribing? A guy is willing to pay me $20 per audio hour, would that be worth it?

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10-09-2013 07:20 AM
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Post: #105
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
I did transcribing exercises in university and believe me, it sucks balls. Depending on the source material, it'll take you way more than 1 hour to transcribe 1 audio hour.
10-09-2013 07:35 AM
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Post: #106
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
(10-09-2013 07:20 AM)bojangles Wrote:  Hey guys, anyone done transcribing? A guy is willing to pay me $20 per audio hour, would that be worth it?

If your schedule is not full, I'd go ahead and take the work since it's been offered. It's another experience you'll have under your belt that you can put in your profiles and on your website. You'll also have a better idea what to charge on the future based on how it goes.

EDIT: Sorry, I just caught the bit about "audio" hour. Yeah, that seems too low. You'll no doubt be pausing it a lot and having to go back to re-listen, etc, or take time to write. I would talk the guy into agreeing to an hourly work-time rate.

If you're willing to work less than $20 an hour, maybe be willing to negotiate, but I personally wouldn't take this on for any less than the market rate until you have a bit of experience in it and know what you're getting yourself into.

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"The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe.
To be your own man is a hard business. If you try it, you'll be lonely often, and sometimes
frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself." - Kipling
(This post was last modified: 10-09-2013 07:48 AM by Beyond Borders.)
10-09-2013 07:39 AM
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Post: #107
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
A word about new niches and bids vs hourly. I'm currently writing some articles about technology and it reminds me how little I know about IT. It's going slow, but I'm learning a lot fast (fast learning is a good skill for a writer).

Keep in mind that a lot of the time when you bid per word or per 100 words you might accidentally sell yourself short - in the beginning. But when you break into a niche, you can often speed up quite a bit once you start understanding the industry concepts and terminology. After a while, depending on how narrow your focus, you will rarely even have to research, and even if you do, you'll know exactly where to go first.

I've gone through this process with quite a few niches, and after a while you can develop it as an area of expertise that can be used to sell yourself in bids.

It's just like anything where you may have to put some time in the beginning for a payout, but unlike a job, your income increases as you gain familiarity. I did this with insurance. I essentially knew fuck-all about insurance, but by struggling in the beginning and even reading some (boring) industry books, a lot of my $100 an hour work comes from that specialty. I have some really big-name clients I've worked with and I can use their names pretty easily to land new clients in that niche.

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"The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe.
To be your own man is a hard business. If you try it, you'll be lonely often, and sometimes
frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself." - Kipling
(This post was last modified: 10-09-2013 07:50 AM by Beyond Borders.)
10-09-2013 07:48 AM
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Post: #108
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
(10-09-2013 07:39 AM)Beyond Borders Wrote:  
(10-09-2013 07:20 AM)bojangles Wrote:  Hey guys, anyone done transcribing? A guy is willing to pay me $20 per audio hour, would that be worth it?

If your schedule is not full, I'd go ahead and take the work since it's been offered. It's another experience you'll have under your belt that you can put in your profiles and on your website. You'll also have a better idea what to charge on the future based on how it goes.

EDIT: Sorry, I just caught the bit about "audio" hour. Yeah, that seems too low. You'll no doubt be pausing it a lot and having to go back to re-listen, etc, or take time to write. I would talk the guy into agreeing to an hourly work-time rate.

If you're willing to work less than $20 an hour, maybe be willing to negotiate, but I personally wouldn't take this on for any less than the market rate until you have a bit of experience in it and know what you're getting yourself into.

I rejected him and told him that the offer was too low, i think it would work out to around $20 per 2.5 hours which is crap. He was UK based too and said an audio hour contained 7000 words. I'm really clued up on the technology sector, I'm just applying to jobs today to see what I can get.

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10-09-2013 08:05 AM
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w00t Offline
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Post: #109
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
BB broseph do you get all your clients from elance or do you do some oldschool stuff aswell, like cold calling or reaching out to editors/marketing guys?
10-09-2013 08:36 AM
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Beyond Borders Away
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Post: #110
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
(10-09-2013 08:36 AM)w00t Wrote:  BB broseph do you get all your clients from elance or do you do some oldschool stuff aswell, like cold calling or reaching out to editors/marketing guys?

Right now I'm just doing Elance, and that's always been my bread and butter.

But I also have gotten clients from:

Guru.com
Problogger job board
Freelance Writing Den
Warrior Forum Sig
Warrior Forum WSO
My Website
Craigslist
Warm Emailing
Cold Emailing
LinkedIn
Offline Marketing forums
Probably more I'm forgetting.

Never approached editors but marketing guys yes.
Never cold-called but I can see the potential. If I was in the states, I'd be hitting up the chamber of commerce and other business networking groups.

I've also considered doing direct mail campaigns.

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"The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe.
To be your own man is a hard business. If you try it, you'll be lonely often, and sometimes
frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself." - Kipling
(This post was last modified: 10-09-2013 09:40 AM by Beyond Borders.)
10-09-2013 09:38 AM
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bojangles Offline
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Post: #111
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
do you guys apply for jobs where clients haven't hired anyone before?

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10-09-2013 10:52 AM
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Post: #112
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
(10-09-2013 10:52 AM)bojangles Wrote:  do you guys apply for jobs where clients haven't hired anyone before?

On Elance it may not be worth it since you're paying for bids. You can also look at percentage of jobs they actually awarded, and if it's less than 30%, they're probably just dreamers.

I think it's kind of fucked up that Elance even takes bids on jobs that never close - they should credit those ones back to you. As it is, a bunch of idiots who have no money can go on there and post a bunch of jobs as they want even though they'll never have the fortitude to carry through with their plans. Seems like a major flaw in the system to me. One of the reasons it's kind of a conglomeration of amateurs there.

If the posting seems really pro though and they're just new to Elance I'll bid sometimes. You have to read between the lines a bit. Sometimes small or medium-sized businesses go in there for the first time looking for a blogger or something.

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"The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe.
To be your own man is a hard business. If you try it, you'll be lonely often, and sometimes
frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself." - Kipling
10-09-2013 11:59 AM
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Post: #113
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
Invaluable advice within this thread. Thanks to all the guys contributing, I'm also drawing motivation from the other guys just starting out.

Running a location independent business has been a dream of mine for some time. Awhile ago I began reading up on freelance writing then decided to give it a shot on Odesk. After doing jobs for real low pay and feeling like I wasn't getting anywhere I became a demoralized... This was a couple of months ago. But now this thread has actually inspired me to give this a real effort, I feel like it is achievable now.

To you guys who are still working full time for the man, how are you managing your time? Are you managing to progress with his without killing yourself working?
10-09-2013 12:37 PM
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bojangles Offline
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Post: #114
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
(10-09-2013 11:59 AM)Beyond Borders Wrote:  
(10-09-2013 10:52 AM)bojangles Wrote:  do you guys apply for jobs where clients haven't hired anyone before?

On Elance it may not be worth it since you're paying for bids. You can also look at percentage of jobs they actually awarded, and if it's less than 30%, they're probably just dreamers.

I think it's kind of fucked up that Elance even takes bids on jobs that never close - they should credit those ones back to you. As it is, a bunch of idiots who have no money can go on there and post a bunch of jobs as they want even though they'll never have the fortitude to carry through with their plans. Seems like a major flaw in the system to me. One of the reasons it's kind of a conglomeration of amateurs there.

If the posting seems really pro though and they're just new to Elance I'll bid sometimes. You have to read between the lines a bit. Sometimes small or medium-sized businesses go in there for the first time looking for a blogger or something.

I'm on Elance but i was doing project management work on there and it won't let me change till the 22nd. which is shit as i want to write now so I've been on Odesk and wary about these guys.

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10-09-2013 01:30 PM
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Enigma Offline
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Post: #115
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
(10-09-2013 07:20 AM)bojangles Wrote:  Hey guys, anyone done transcribing? A guy is willing to pay me $20 per audio hour, would that be worth it?

No no no no no no.

I made this mistake on one of my first Elance jobs. Transcribing takes a LONG time. It takes professional transcribers at least 4+ hours for an hour of great quality audio and they have things like foot pedals to help them. It can take up to 10+. Of course I didn't research any of this until after I had taken the job.

I offered to do almost two hours of transcription for $50 thinking "oh it'll only take me a couple hours each." I also offered a 24 hour turnaround because it was one of my first jobs. I had to work non-stop on that shit. I only slept three hours one night and still didn't finish in time. I would estimate it took me at least 15 hours total.

Fortunately, it got me my first feedback. The lady contacted me later about doing a larger project and asked for my hourly rate. I researched transcription pricing and found out that $1 per audio minute is around the bottom of the barrel. Many charge much more, especially for fast turnaround which this lady wanted.

I quoted her $1.25 per audio minute. This would have come out to an absolute maximum of $15 per hour, probably closer to $10. She never even bothered to respond to my e-mail.

$20 per audio hour is slave wages in the Western world. Unfortunately, I haven't seen anyone on Elance offering legitimate wages for those types of jobs. I think it's just cheap asses who want something for nothing because searching the internet you'll be hard pressed to find transcription service for less than triple that rate. Let the Indians and Phillipinos have that shit.

That being said, if I was getting paid the $20-30+ an hour ($1.50-2.50+ per audio minute) that some of the transcription pros get, I would take it. It is tedious, yes, but the benefit is that there's no research, no thinking, etc. involved. You're just copying down what someone says. When I was doing the job above, I eventually came up with the idea of using a free audio program that let me slow down and loop the audio which made it much easier.

That was quite the rant but I want to help other avoid the same mistakes I did haha.
10-09-2013 01:32 PM
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Post: #116
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
(10-09-2013 01:30 PM)bojangles Wrote:  I'm on Elance but i was doing project management work on there and it won't let me change till the 22nd. which is shit as i want to write now so I've been on Odesk and wary about these guys.

Yeah, it sucks you have to pay more to bid on other types of jobs.

Honestly, from what all you guys are saying, it sounds like Odesk is better.

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To be your own man is a hard business. If you try it, you'll be lonely often, and sometimes
frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself." - Kipling
(This post was last modified: 10-09-2013 01:32 PM by Beyond Borders.)
10-09-2013 01:32 PM
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Post: #117
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
(10-09-2013 01:32 PM)Beyond Borders Wrote:  
(10-09-2013 01:30 PM)bojangles Wrote:  I'm on Elance but i was doing project management work on there and it won't let me change till the 22nd. which is shit as i want to write now so I've been on Odesk and wary about these guys.

Yeah, it sucks you have to pay more to bid on other types of jobs.

Honestly, from what all you guys are saying, it sounds like Odesk is better.

Eh. I haven't done much on oDesk yet but the advantages are balanced by the fact that they don't guarantee you get paid on anything other than hourly work. Also, they want you to use "TeamApp" for your hourly work which monitors your mouse clicks and keyword strokes. It also takes random screenshots of your work every ten minutes or so. Seems pretty intrusive to me.

So you're basically giving up fixed price work with escrow payments for hourly work and some computer program invading your privacy.
10-09-2013 01:54 PM
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Post: #118
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
Ah, I didn't realize you were talking about Odesk when you mentioned this before. Don't they have an escrow system or something?

Elance uses a tracking system for hourly work too. Not quite as invasive as this teamapp, it sounds like, but more than enough for my taste. another reason to avoid the hourly stuff.

(10-09-2013 01:54 PM)Enigma Wrote:  Eh. I haven't done much on oDesk yet but the advantages are balanced by the fact that they don't guarantee you get paid on anything other than hourly work. Also, they want you to use "TeamApp" for your hourly work which monitors your mouse clicks and keyword strokes. It also takes random screenshots of your work every ten minutes or so. Seems pretty intrusive to me.

So you're basically giving up fixed price work with escrow payments for hourly work and some computer program invading your privacy.

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"The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe.
To be your own man is a hard business. If you try it, you'll be lonely often, and sometimes
frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself." - Kipling
(This post was last modified: 10-09-2013 02:40 PM by Beyond Borders.)
10-09-2013 02:40 PM
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Post: #119
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
(10-09-2013 02:40 PM)Beyond Borders Wrote:  Ah, I didn't realize you were talking about Odesk when you mentioned this before. Don't they have an escrow system or something?

Elance uses a tracking system for hourly work too. Not quite as invasive as this teamapp, it sounds like, but more than enough for my taste. another reason to avoid the hourly stuff.

No. They don't offer escrow because they don't want to pay for it and they even charge you to dispute nonpayment. That's why they're cheaper upfront. But getting shafted on one small job is enough to make it more expensive in the long run.

I'm sure most of us who are trying to make some real money aren't worried about $10/month with Elance when it includes guaranteed payment for our work.
10-09-2013 03:14 PM
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Post: #120
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
(10-09-2013 11:59 AM)Beyond Borders Wrote:  
(10-09-2013 10:52 AM)bojangles Wrote:  do you guys apply for jobs where clients haven't hired anyone before?

On Elance it may not be worth it since you're paying for bids. You can also look at percentage of jobs they actually awarded, and if it's less than 30%, they're probably just dreamers.

I think it's kind of fucked up that Elance even takes bids on jobs that never close - they should credit those ones back to you. As it is, a bunch of idiots who have no money can go on there and post a bunch of jobs as they want even though they'll never have the fortitude to carry through with their plans. Seems like a major flaw in the system to me. One of the reasons it's kind of a conglomeration of amateurs there.

If the posting seems really pro though and they're just new to Elance I'll bid sometimes. You have to read between the lines a bit. Sometimes small or medium-sized businesses go in there for the first time looking for a blogger or something.


Agreed. So far it seems only about 33% of jobs related to SEO/E-Commerce actually get awarded. Most people post the job and then never log on again. I had quite a few jobs in my watch list and I didn't bid on them. I just looked at the ones that are 7-10 days old and many of them posted the job, maybe logged on the next day, and then never logged back on. I routinely use 5-6 connects per job (I always try to be a sponsored big), so quite expensive to lose 66% of my bids to people who aren't serious. I've been much more picky now.

On a brighter note, sent out 2 video proposals last night, got one bite. Guy said he was very impressed with my video proposal, asked me about Bangkok (I always start my video with a joke about them hearing the loud aircon because it's so hot here) and some other follow up questions. $400 a month if I get it.

Video proposals are doing great for me in the SEO niche.
10-09-2013 11:16 PM
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Post: #121
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
w00t,
I realize this is an older post in this thread but it caught my attention:
You mentioned having done translation. Which languages did you translate? Did you do the work yourself or outsourced it? I speak 6 languages and can do translations in 4 or 5 of them professionally.

I guess just like any kind of freelance writing, translation gets lucrative if you are an expert in a specific area/niche. What kind of rates can be commanded for regular and technical, industrial and legal translation? Were you charging per word, per page or per project or even per hour?

Cheers!

P.S. BTW Rio, that link to video proposal was absolutely gold! Thanks for sharing it!The beauty of it is that it can be used to any other kind of proposal, not just freelance work. I have been using Jing to send short capture screens with instructions to both partners and prospects but not a full blown proposal via video. Will implement it on my very next venture!


(09-18-2013 08:54 AM)w00t Wrote:  Yup Im a writer/translator....Translation is too boring I dont wanna do it anymore.
(This post was last modified: 10-10-2013 12:13 AM by Vacancier Permanent.)
10-10-2013 12:10 AM
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Post: #122
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
Is it a must to register on freelance with your real name?

I usually don't like to put out my real name on these sites. I wonder if not giving out my real name would interfere with payments to my paypal account.

I would be glad if someone could clarify me on this. Cheers.
10-10-2013 11:02 AM
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Post: #123
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
(10-10-2013 11:02 AM)pitt Wrote:  Is it a must to register on freelance with your real name?

I usually don't like to put out my real name on these sites. I wonder if not giving out my real name would interfere with payments to my paypal account.

I would be glad if someone could clarify me on this. Cheers.

Nope. I've always used a pen name and having my real name on my financial accounts has not been an issue.

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To be your own man is a hard business. If you try it, you'll be lonely often, and sometimes
frightened. But no price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself." - Kipling
10-10-2013 11:04 AM
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RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
Ok, thanks.
10-10-2013 11:16 AM
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Post: #125
RE: Freelancing on Elance etc.
(10-10-2013 12:10 AM)Vacancier Permanent Wrote:  w00t,
I realize this is an older post in this thread but it caught my attention:
You mentioned having done translation. Which languages did you translate? Did you do the work yourself or outsourced it? I speak 6 languages and can do translations in 4 or 5 of them professionally.

I guess just like any kind of freelance writing, translation gets lucrative if you are an expert in a specific area/niche. What kind of rates can be commanded for regular and technical, industrial and legal translation? Were you charging per word, per page or per project or even per hour?

Cheers!

P.S. BTW Rio, that link to video proposal was absolutely gold! Thanks for sharing it!The beauty of it is that it can be used to any other kind of proposal, not just freelance work. I have been using Jing to send short capture screens with instructions to both partners and prospects but not a full blown proposal via video. Will implement it on my very next venture!


(09-18-2013 08:54 AM)w00t Wrote:  Yup Im a writer/translator....Translation is too boring I dont wanna do it anymore.

Im from Germany so I was doing English-German translations. I charged by the word and didnt stick with translating long enough to get decent rates, to me its tedious, boring work. You can check out proz.com and translatorscafe.com they have lots of resources on translating and also jobboards.
10-10-2013 03:22 PM
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