February 9, 2010

FAQ

Can you work legally for U.S. clients?


Yes, with certain conditions. Under NAFTA there is no issue with hiring a Canadian contractor on a 1099 basis as long as the work is being performed outside of the U.S. and there is clearly not an employer/employee relationship. I work as a 1099 contractor for a number of U.S. companies and there is no extra paperwork for the client. I will provide a W-8BEN for your records.

Will you do a small job for free as a test?”



No. I will do a test, but not a job. So if you have a standard piece of audio or transcript with planted errors that you use to test all potential transcriptionists, proofreaders, and/or scopists, I will gladly do it. But I will not work for free.

Do you meet deadlines?



Absolutely. I am a professional and this is my full-time job. I have been doing this long enough to be able to understand how long a project will take to complete and completion deadlines are firm. To be honest, I don’t have other commitments, like a family, that can derail my schedule. Work is really my only priority. I’m the person my clients who have other commitments go to when they or their other typists have to back out of a job and need something done at the last minute.

Do you have references?



Yes. You can also see a list of some of my clients on the home page of this site.

What is your time zone? / What are your office hours?



I am in the Central time zone in Mexico. My clients, who are mostly in the Pacific and Eastern time zones, schedule me in their time zone and I make it my responsibility to do the necessary conversion to the time zone I am in so as to meet deadlines. I generally work between 8:00 am and 5:00 pm Tuesday through Sunday and as needed evenings and Mondays. I do respond to client emails outside of those hours and if I’m not at my desk during normal business hours.

What computer platform do you work on?



I primarily work on a Mac, but scope in the Windows environment using Case CATalyst.

How do you access the Internet? / Wait, you’re in Mexico? How reliable can the internet be there?!



I normally access the Internet through a fast high-speed hard-wired connection that has had a grand total of two hours of down time in three years, and I use my cellular data plan as a backup. I never perform work for clients over unsecured public WiFi.

How do I get files to you? How do you return files to me?



Clients send me files through Dropbox (preferred), email, and FTP. I prefer not to use Hightail or Google Drive, but occasionally do. I return files through the same method or by email.

How can I be a better client?



Thanks for asking! Here are some suggestions:

– Be clear about what you have, what you want, and when you want it;
– Provide me with an updated, thorough, and consistent style guide/manual;
– For transcription clients, provide clear audio with no background noise and avoid having speakers talk over each other.

Why are your rates (especially for transcription) so high?



They are not high. Transcription rates in particular have been at least half what they should be for over a decade now. My rates are commensurate with my experience, education, services offered, and in line with what professional associations, such as The EFA, say they should be.