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How to Turn Your Bilingualism into a Successful Work at Home Career

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If you’re bilingual, your translation skills can mean you’re in high demand in the workplace. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of interpreters and translators is expected to grow 18 percent between 2016 and 2026, which is much faster than the average for all occupations.  

How To Turn Your Bilingualism Into A Successful Work At Home Career

Translators frequently work from home. If you’ve been looking for a way to stay at home with the kids, have more control over your schedule or just leave behind the office politics, translation could be your key to finally getting that work from home career. With a good translation blog (tips for translators and freelancers) to help guide you, you can build a successful career as a freelance translator.

Another option is to focus your bilingualism on copywriting, blogging and marketing gigs in multiple languages.

Below, we’ll look at how you can leverage your bilingualism into a steady work from home career as a translator or multilingual writer, from finding remote freelance jobs to building up clients through your own translation blog.    

Why Translation Services and Writing Make Such a Great Work from Home Career

Translation and writing in another language are both perfect jobs to do from home. They both mean ample time alone with word processing software. You may also have to work with audio and video files, which is very easy to do from home with the right software.

Translation services and writing jobs are usually paid per word or project. Jobs with these types of pay structure make a good base for working from home. As long as you meet your deadlines and turn in quality work, there’s no need to go to a physical location so someone else can keep track of your time. And with the availability of time tracking programs, you can even complete translation and writing work that pays by the hour from home.

Furthermore, translation works are commonly offered in freelance. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that 22 percent of interpreters and translators were self-employed in 2016, along with a whopping 64 percent of writers and authors. Clearly, both translation and writing comes with a steady track record of independent working. That means the industry is geared up to providing jobs for freelance workers.

Where to Find from Home Translation Services and Writing Jobs

There are many ways to find agencies, individuals and organizations that are in need of translation services and writing jobs that allows you to work from home. A few of the options are:

  • Upwork has a list of freelance translation jobs where you can bid for a certain project.
  • Micro task sites like Fiverr offer small bits of audio or text that need translating in batches, making this a good option for freelancers.
  • You can also check out job finding websites like Indeed. They usually maintain a register of home based jobs you can consider. Many of them have the option to enter terms like “remote” or “telecommute” in the location field, and others also let you use search terms like “freelance.”  
  • Networking with colleagues, friends and family can yield clients, especially if you are just starting out. You might be surprised to learn who needs freelance translators and multilingual writers!
  • Other translation and writing sites allow you to register with them and then they connect you with the clients. Simply Google terms like “freelance translation websites.” Just be on the lookout for anything that seems like a scam.
  • You can also look into translation agencies that hire remote translators or and bilingual writers. You could even consider working over the phone as a remote interpreter.   
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All of these options are good for finding freelance or remote roles if you’re looking to occupy that sweet spot between feeling like an employee and still working from home. But there are ways to build your own client base, which can help you gain more independence in your career as a translator or a bilingual writer.     

Gaining Clients through Your Own Translation Blog and Website

You can run your career as a translator or bilingual writer much like a business, finding your own clients independently by marketing your translation and/or writing services.  

One of the most common ways people find their own clients is by building their own website. Such websites are designed to showcase the work of freelancers, tell people what services they offer and entice people to hire them. If you learn how to optimize your website for SEO purposes, you could end up near the top of search results for certain terms and generate a high volume of leads for your business directly through your site.

A common part of running your own website is having your own blog – a translation blog or writing blog that showcases your knowledge and skills. Through blogging, you could provide tips and content for translators – an added convenience is you can write almost on every subject that is related to translation and working from home, matters that you will be well adept in given that you experience them on a daily basis.

Another angle would be to gear your blogging efforts towards businesses looking to work across multiple cultures. Either way, you can use your translation blog to establish yourself as an expert in the translation/bilingual niche, and through that, market your services as a translator or writer.  

As you can see, there are many ways to build your own work from home career as a translator or a bilingual writer. Simply pick a way to run your business that fits with your work style, personality and lifestyle.  

Ofer Tirosh is CEO of Tomedes, a translation company that works with thousands of freelancers around the world. The Tomedes hub is a valuable resource for those translators and other freelancers working in the languages sector.



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