13. 07. 2018

The Translation Agency Industry’s Top-Earning Career Paths

Adaptive’s recruiters are often asked by candidates how they can build their careers to raise their market value and earnings. Here we share our map of the paths which lead to some of the top-paying roles in the global language services industry.First things first - you don’t have to be a salesperson to make big bucks.Often when Adaptive is approached by candidates looking to up their earnings in the language services industry, there’s an expectation that only the high-flying BDMs and C-suite management are making top money.After all, BDMs are on commission plans and signing big customer deals can be very lucrative. And it’s true – top BDMs and sales managers can be making as much as anyone on this list.But salespeople not the only ones with strong pay packages in the language industry. In fact, we’ve left sales out of our list below to offer alternate options to translation and localization industry professionals looking to build their careers.So here we go - four routes to top-paying roles if cold calling isn’t your thing:1. Business Unit Leadershipe.g. VP Life Sciences, VP EngineeringBroad-ranging VP titles usually signify a role that is a mix of client relations, operations and specific expertise in a particular area.Professionals in these positions are in charge of ‘business units’ which operate like mini-companies within the larger organization, focused on one specific area – such as services to the Life Sciences market or engineering services.This means the VP’s responsibility is wide, often covering a separate profit and loss account for their unit. VPs leading these areas can come from a variety of backgrounds, but have often worked their way up an internal hierarchy where their increasing experience makes them more and more valuable.They head up hiring, account management and ensure that their company’s service offering continues to be competitive and evolve with the market.Career Entry Point: Project Manager, Account Manager, BDMKey Skill: ability to combine rounded business skills with deep subject-matter expertiseAverage Salary Range: $100,000 - $160,000 + bonus 2. Internal Technology Managemente.g. CTO, VP of TechnologyAt the highest level, technology managers need to be more than just experts in localization workflows, and lead areas such as networking, security, compliance, training, technology change management, data recovery and more.Their focus is on the role technology plays in helping the company reach strategic goals and impacting overall P&L.Localization career paths typically go from specialist to generalist with candidates building a base in CAT tools, internal and client workflows and then rounding out generalist IT competencies to continue progressing.Career Entry Point: CAT Tools Specialist, Localization Technology Manager, Localization EngineerAverage Salary Range: $120,000 - $180,000 + bonusKey skill: ability to visualize and implement technology changes which make high-value improvements to the global organization 3. Operations & General Managemente.g. VP Operations, General ManagerA great goal for Project Managers!Many of the industry’s top-paid professionals in operations (production) leadership started ‘in the trenches’ as PMs. Growth in this career channel comes from deep first-hand knowledge of internal workflows, aptitude for working directly with key customers and versatile operational skills – organization, planning, financial management and personnel leadership.As operations candidates move up the career ladder, they broaden their generalist business skills and combine them with their expert knowledge of localization processes to eventually step up and take overall responsibility.Career Entry Point: Project Manager, QA ManagerSalary range: $120,000 - $150,000 + bonusKey skill: ability to design and maintain efficient teams and workflows to deliver reliably and profitably for customers4. Client Solutions Developmente.g. VP Client Solutions, Global Solutions ManagerA specialist team within most LSPs, solutions professionals focus on bridging the gap between sales, production and IT.Their focus is building creative solutions for prospective and existing customers, which involves customizing, integrating and potentially selecting new tools to bring together clients’ existing technology systems and those used by the LSP.Many client solutions experts get their start in engineering and are well versed in CAT tools, but also work to develop strong client relationship skills throughout their careers. Often professionals in this space work on the client side for at least a few years, building inside knowledge from the buyer perspective.At the top of the tree, global managers for solutions teams build some of the most advanced workflows in commercial localization.Career Entry Point: Localization Engineer, CAT Tools Specialist, Project Manager, Account ManagerSalary range: $130,000 - $150,000 + bonusKey skill: ability to think creatively to create unique technology-based workflow solutions * * *Adaptive Globalization recruits within the translation, localization and language technology sectors from entry-level to VP+.Feel free to get in touch to discuss hiring or career development – can check out Adaptive Globalization’s vacancies for PMs, Account Managers, Loc Engineers, BDMs and more in our job listings here.
15. 06. 2018

Five Lesser-Known Conference Picks for LSP BDMs

Along with industry calendar staples, here are some off-the-beaten-path conference options for translation and localization sales professionalsFor some it's one of the top perks of the job - company-paid travel opportunities to hang out in some of the world's top cities while enjoying good food and drink along the way.For others, it's a dreaded few days of airport security, taxis, hotel rooms and living out of a suitcase.Whatever your take on the travel aspect, there are few better prospecting opportunities than conferences, with hundreds of potential customers gathered together with the explicit purpose of finding ideas and partners to drive their businesses forward.On the localization circuit, there are some established events. LocWorld, TAUS, ATC and the fast-growing Slatorcon among them. To dot the 'i's and cross the 't's, the guys at Nimdzi Insights have made a pretty comprehensive schedule here.But when it comes to sending sales reps outside of the loc bubble, many companies struggle for direction.With industry-specific conferences and trade events, results can be hit and miss. Those targeting the gaming space swear by GDC, whilst those with their sights on the LifeSci space favor events such as DIA.On a more general footing, here are a few conferences Adaptive's loc agency customers have attended with good reviews:1)     Brand2GlobalBilled "a world leader in promoting education and training in the fields of Global Branding, Global Marketing, Global Digital Media, and Localization", Brand2Global’s conferences feature speakers and attendees who head up global marketing for major brands. 2017’s speaker list included representatives from Microsoft, HubSpot, GoPro, Gatorade and Citrix.2)     SaaStr“The world’s largest community for B2B’ software”. Held over 3 days and attended by 15,000+, the SaaStr conference brings together leaders and learners in the world of software-as-a-service, a favourite IT niche with localization BDMs looking to get in at ground-level with the next company poised for explosive growth. 2019’s lineup is already assembled and features luminaries from Box, Pinterest and Slack, along with plenty of VC and PE experts.3)     TechCrunch Disrupt“Before there were tech conferences, there was Disrupt.” Hackathons, ‘Startup Alley’… Disrupt is all about early-phase businesses and bringing together investors and innovators for discussion and collaboration. For BDMs looking to engage early with high-growth companies at a low level of localization maturity, this can be a great base and afford some valuable networking.4)     WebSummitThe accolades for this event are seemingly infinite: Inc. magazine calls it “the largest tech conference in the world”, Forbes “the best tech conference on the planet”. Attendees top 70,000 and speaker numbers run past 1,000. An all-star featured speaker lineup includes C-level representatives from, Twitter, eBay, Nestlé and Tommy Hilfiger. The sheer scale of the event means any brave loc participants need to plan carefully to find relevant sessions to focus on, but there’s no event with more tech heavyweights in one place at one time. 5)     DmexcoThe self-styled “global business and innovation platform of the digital economy”, dmexco focuses on digital commerce, marketing and transformation. Heavily attended by digital services companies for a while, increasing numbers of language service providers are adding this event to their conference calendar also. Past speakers include Jack Dorsey (CEO, Twitter), Sheryl Sandberg (COO, Facebook) and Sir Martin Sorrell (Founder, WPP).You can check out Adaptive Globalization’s current BDM vacancies in our job listings here. 
24. 04. 2018

Top tips to secure that sales job in language services

Adaptive’s recruiters often get asked for tips and advice on interviewing by sales candidates in the language services space.It’s a very interesting topic, as client interview processes have changed and evolved, and preparing correctly for an interview is crucial in a competitive job market.In this post, I’m keen to share the reasons why clients interview the way they do, and what you need to do to get the sales job you want (and deserve).Let’s look at the beginning of the process:          Your CV: What are you up against in terms of content on your CV?Have a think of the core part of your job working in sales, what is it? What does the employer want to see in your CV?They want to see how you sell, what techniques you use when selling, who you’ve sold to, and what you’ve achieved.Revenue – candidates often don’t show off the revenue they have brought to a company. This is the key measure of success in your role, so why are you not showing this in your CV?Often candidates who have missed goals or come in at under 100% are concerned with putting this in their profile. However, including no sales data at all can raise more suspicion in an employer than an honest track record.Reaching sales goals is a complex process that involves many factors – sales support, marketing, pricing, delivery, branding, resources… interviewers understand this and contextualize accordingly. Even if you are not comfortable putting your full sales quota attainment history in your CV, it’s a good idea to showcase key clients or number of clients won, major deals closed, contracts awarded and other quantifiable achievements.At the end of the day, if you are claiming a high salary and large commission package, you will need to show what you are capable of for companies to take your CV seriously.Grammar and punctuation – make sure that you have a polished CV without any errors, have it proof-read by a family member or friend. Are we back at school? No. But a lot of candidates throw together a CV with basic glitches without realising.This is the document that represents you – it gets you in the door when you’re seeking new employment and it determines whether a future boss will make time out of their diary to speak or meet with you.Consider what making these small mistakes will do when pitching to a new client for a large translation or localization project. If they noticed a spelling or grammar mistake from someone selling Language Services, will that supplier make it to the next round?Preparing for the meetingIn your daily sales role, when you’re heading to a new client’s office to present to the Sales Manager, Sales Director, CEO and Marketing Director about your service, think about the process you go through – for example:Research the prospectsDiscuss the areas the prospect is looking to find a solution forConsider which solutions you can create to solve the issue for themStrategize on how you will add value to the prospectWhy have you done this? Would you ever show up for a meeting unprepared?No, you won’t, so why would you turn up to an interview unprepared?Clients want to see that you have taken the time to research them. They want to hire someone who is diligent in their work, understands the process of finding information and how to use it in a real-life situation. (By the way, the interview is a real life situation of winning business. That business pays your salary and commission!).Do you turn up 15 minutes before your interview, or is this just a myth?Short answer; it’s not a myth.It displays you’re prepared and ready to go when the meeting starts. It also gives you time to catch your breath and get familiar with the surroundings and the feel of the place. You wouldn’t show up late to a pitch, would you?If there are travel problems, realise this early and make sure you are prepared for any delays. You never know there might be someone on the interviewing panel who has flown in that morning to meet with you. Don’t make them late.In the meetingKeep answers focusedYou’ve come in, met everyone, then you sit down to the first question. You’re feeling good, looking smart and well prepared.Then, you end up talking too much and stray away from the point of conversation, even after the first question!It’s not just junior staff who do this, it can happen to the most seasoned sales pro looking for ways to make an impression and showcase knowledge. Think about taking a deep breath and consider your answer carefully.In quite a few cases, we hear feedback from candidates who listened to the question and dived straight into the answer without thinking. Before you know it, you’ve answered something completely different to what was asked of you.Short and concise answers are key.Show that you are listening.Answer the actual question and if asked for an explanation which will be a longer answer, then breathe and deliver.Don’t forget body language and eye contactThis is absolutely key - keep eye contact, be open and confident in yourself.If you were sitting on the other side of the table, staring at yourself and asking the interview questions, which version of you would you want to see? The one looking at the table, speaking quietly, not showing much ambition or drive for that job? Or the smiling, happy, confident, professional version?Present your planIn almost all sales interviews the future employer will ask you to take part in a presenting task, maybe a 30/60/90-day plan with a forecast for revenue and areas you will be looking to approach for new business.When you are presenting, think of the following;Keep it straight to the point of what you have been tasked to doThe presentation does not need to be 50 pages long, just remember, you will most likely have 10-15 minutes to present.Do not be surprised if you are stopped to be asked a question, this should not throw you off though – breathe and continueBring out your personality when doing this – you need to get their attention and they want to know if they can work with you.Enthusiasm & humour - bring this to the interview, if you are not enthusiastic the client may doubt your interest and they will switch off immediately. Make sure you are excited about what you are doing and saying. This will lead to you being more comfortable and better able to show your personality alongside your knowledge.Q&A – make sure that you back up everything you have said during the presentation to answer the questions the employer will ask. In short, make sure your presentation doesn’t raise obvious questions you can’t answer!Questions – what to ask and why?So, you are getting to the end of the interview and you get asked: “Do you have any questions for us?”A few areas to think about, to help prepare for questions:Why are you applying to work for this company? From the research you have done so far, what do you want to know? What solutions are you expected to sell, in which territories/markets?What about the internal side to the business, what is the culture like? What are their values? Career growth, how do you grow within the company?Be interested enough to ask how the next three-five years of your career will look like from a personal and professional standpoint.Master the close:How do you close the interview?First up, don’t put the interviewer on the spot.We advise asking for initial feedback, and asking when you can expect to hear from them next. Maybe ask the client about the points of your interview that stood out to them, and why. What are the next steps to the process, do they (the employer) have any further questions for you?With this, you will be able to gauge where you stand.Keep the meeting positive, don’t ask for negative feedback - look at the positives and keep the mindset of the meeting in that same manner!Lastly, just enjoy it!This is your chance to get yourself your next big career move. Getting a new job can be stressful, but the interview stage is a process everyone has to go through and it should not be looked at as a daunting prospect. This is where YOU can better yourself by gaining that next job that can propel you to greater heights than you expected of yourself!Lastly, best of luck in your interview stage – go get them!
12. 04. 2018

Making a career switch in the language services industry can be a complex process to undertake alone

With an ever-growing community of agencies, M&A activity consolidating the commercial landscape and new opportunities on the client side springing up as the localization strategies of high-growth companies mature, even finding the right companies to talk to can be a challenge, let alone the right role and fit.Add to that a variety of multi-round interview schedules, dead-end and mis-matched processes, misaligned offer negotiations… a job search can quickly turn into months of distracting and stressful effort.Whilst working with a professional recruiter is often seen as a great way to get the ‘introductions’ to active hiring managers in the market, candidates who build a strong partnership with their recruiter can hugely improve their overall experience and get much more out of working together than a simple introduction.Savvy candidates put their recruiter to work on their behalf, and collaborate to secure faster processes, actionable feedback, cleaner negotiations and a better end result: the best role for their skills, interests and financial goals that the market has available.Here are a few ideas on how candidates in the language services industry can get maximum benefit from working with a recruitment specialist:Managing feedback and identifying areas of improvement – throughout each round of interview discussions, a strong recruiter will be debriefing with both candidate and hiring company to provide feedback, ensure key questions are on the discussion agenda and help both sides to advance a productive dialogue. Undertaking an interview process solo can mean moving through interview rounds with zero feedback or insight into what the hiring team’s thoughts, concerns and motivations might be.Setting time expectations – much of the frustration in an interview process can stem from a stop-start rhythm as everyone tries to juggle busy schedules. Recruiters can keep candidates notified about time-frames, any likely delays, and ensure that all parties know exactly where they are in a process so that they can manage their career search with confidence.Providing key insight – Adaptive Globalization has recruited within the language services industry for over ten years, and our recruiters offer candidates valuable intel on how to approach interview processes, details on hiring companies and individual hiring managers. A good recruiter will be able to brief candidates on interview formats, interviewer styles and preferences and guide a candidate to deliver a standout performance that truly represents their potential and capabilities to the hiring company.Managing expectations – negotiating is a major part of any process, and it’s not just salary. Benefits, vacation, pension, job title, flexible working, promotion time-frames… it’s all part of a complex conversation, and nothing is more frustrating than reaching the end of a long interview process only to be disappointed with the final offer. Professional recruiters are there to re-qualify expectations on both sides at every stage, ensuring that nobody invests time in mis-matched opportunities.The recruitment industry is an introduction business, and Adaptive’s network helps hundreds of translation and localization industry professionals each year find their next career step. But the introduction really only scratches the surface in terms of what we are able to provide candidates in their job searches.Remember, your consultant is there for you throughout the entire process, there are many ways that you can get the most out of recruiter at Adaptive Globalization outside of the introduction to a hiring manager, I encourage you to use as many as possible!
26. 02. 2018

Building Culture in Language Services Companies: An interview with Mark Brayan, CEO of Appen

Adaptive Globalization speaks with thousands of professionals in the language services and technology industry every year about their career ambitions and development.Alongside job specifics such as responsibilities, location and pay, corporate culture is one of the major topics raised by of those exploring new career options. Often when discussing job opportunities Adaptive’s recruiters are questioned not only on culture as regards the local office space in which a candidate would be working, but on the role that corporate culture plays in the hiring company’s business operations and overall identity.For some organizations, culture is only peripherally addressed at a leadership level, with top and bottom-line considerations driving daily decision-making. For others, culture is a foundational component of business success and a key aspect of strategy.Defining and implementing corporate culture can be challenging, especially within a global business where international offices and local cultural differences must be factored in.To learn more about how to address these challenges, Adaptive spoke with Mark Brayan, CEO of Appen.AG: The first step in building a successful corporate culture is to have a clear vision for what culture means within an organization. How is this interpreted at Appen?MB: Culture is how people work together, how they get things done. If the culture isn’t going to achieve business objectives, it will fail. Strategy needs to be supported by culture – you can have the most elegant strategy in the world, but if you don’t have an enabling culture, that strategy won’t get implemented.When developing business plans, culture is a fundamental consideration as both culture and strategy have to be aligned in order for the organization to be successful.AG: How is culture created at Appen?MB: You can’t write down culture on a piece of paper and make it so – you have to create conditions, and culture creates itself within those conditions. Conditions can be formal, such as business structures, or informal, such as respect for the customer.As a business, you don’t create culture – you create conditions for culture. Where the business can help shape, culture is through creating the right structures and via the leadership of the business displaying the desired cultural behaviors.To reinforce this, Appen does have formalized culture and value statements, which in fact preceded my joining the business. These do have a physical and online presence around the business, and there is a system of encouragement to adopt these standards via employee awards based around the values.AG: Is culture within Appen static, or does it evolve? How is this evolution managed?MB: We shape the direction of our culture through ongoing feedback. We try to continually integrate employee input through tools such as engagement surveys. The primary values which emerge from these as important to Appen’s teams are respect for each other and respect for customers, and we work to ensure these are built into our norms and behaviors.Another major way in which culture should evolve is in accordance with shifting stakeholder requirements. When Appen transitioned from a private to a public company, a new group of stakeholders had to be integrated. From staff and customers, we then had to ensure that investors were considered and positively impacted by our culture.There are internal leadership meetings to discuss cultural goals and propagating culture – understanding what people value and what binds them to the company. it’s talked about, it’s an active part of dialogue, but it’s up to leadership to adopt it and work to implement it.AG: The first step in building a successful corporate culture is to have a clear vision for what culture means within an organization. How is this interpreted at Appen?MB: Culture is how people work together, how they get things done. If the culture isn’t going to achieve business objectives, it will fail. Strategy needs to be supported by culture – you can have the most elegant strategy in the world, but if you don’t have an enabling culture, that strategy won’t get implemented.When developing business plans, culture is a fundamental consideration as both culture and strategy have to be aligned in order for the organization to be successful.AG: Much of the discussion around corporate culture happens from an internal viewpoint. How does Appen’s cultural and value mix impact customers?MB: There is a definite benefit for customer, with regard to quality of work, time-frames, responsiveness and other aspects. Appen’s corporate culture is, in many ways, almost more customer-facing than internal-facing.The mindset is “how do we help the customer?”. There are direct links between culture, how Appen works with customers, and how the company performs. Good corporate performance is good for culture – it attracts talent, provides challenge and opportunity, and strong financial performance feeds culture.But if a company is struggling, then strong corporate culture is also vital – culture can be relied upon to support periods of poor performance.AG: What allowance is made for international variance in corporate culture?MB: Appen has offices in Australia, the Philippines, the US and the UK. That gives us a very rich set of cultures. However, there is consistency in those core corporate cultural elements that define Appen as a business.We have a wealth of cultural nuance around regions of the world which are a benefit in adding color and diversity to our teams.However, how people work together, how we treat each other, how we get things done – that’s the variable we work to keep consistent.
08. 01. 2018

LSP Growth – An Up-Close Look with a Chief of Sales & Marketing Officer

Growth is something that happens around a team. Sometimes to a team. But what’s it like viewing LSP growth from the top? To help answer that question, Adaptive Globalization’s Global Recruitment Director Tom Newman spoke with Véronique Özkaya, Chief Sales & Marketing Officer with Xplanation, Chair of the Board with GALA and a former CSO with Moravia and VP with Lionbridge. Adaptive Globalization works with candidates across all areas of the language services and technology industry, with over 200 candidate placements made in 2016 so far. Throughout this large volume of interaction with industry professionals, without a shadow of a doubt the most commonly-heard aspiration among candidates is a desire to join a ‘growing’ company. Growth is exciting – it means change, it means progress, it means a move into the unknown. While growth certainly permeates almost all areas of a translation agency, it’s not often that members of the core production and sales teams are offered the chance to view the corporation’s development from a bird’s-eye view. AG: Xplanation’s growth has been rapid and spread across multiple geographies (11 countries and counting). What has been the reason to expand so fast across the map, and not focus on consolidation in primary markets? Veronique: Initially it was purely down to the circumstances of knowing a number of people in those geographies. They really had a startup attitude and could stretch from business development to admin tasks and recruitment.  If you take an office like Sweden in the beginning, we had these multi-talent profiles so we knew we could afford to start from scratch and build around the skills of our team. We knew that the opportunity of regions like Denmark or Sweden was there – we saw strength in the manufacturing sector and a growing need for exports so it was an obvious move. Phase two of growth is a little bit more difficult, once hubs are established. That is more driven by our customers. What we do now is look at our customers and where we’re going to reinforce our capabilities. It’s not just geography – you need to reinforce your services, customers, and regional presence. We have a base, we know it has potential, and we want to accelerate that. But the core is really the people. The talent. AG: Why did you build production teams at each country? Veronique: We try to build production teams in-country wherever possible. It’s our approach to have a customer-facing capability at least at a production level as often as possible. In countries like the USA, for instance, we wanted a PM in that time zone. But beyond that, we have been careful to match cultures where possible, and not be purely time-zone or geography led. We need our customers and their support teams to mesh culturally and work together for best results. AG: Is the US market still a major target among Europe-based LSPs? Veronique: I’m a firm believer that there remains a lot of potential in the US. What is different from Europe is that decisions are made quicker, which is appealing. Selling to the US from a primarily Europe base is a challenge, however. We do have an offering with a lot of automation and cool technology, processes, and people – but the first engagement can be tough. We’ve definitely seen a big difference between having one office, to having multiple offices and country managers. This global platform has been a major accelerator in our ability to sell internationally. AG: With respect to your office in Beijing. Has the Far East been the most challenging region to establish yourself in, as a Western European business? Veronique: I think it is certainly more difficult than the US. It’s the culture, market, and trust-building. Even in America, people want to do business with Americans. In Japan and China, I’ve seen it repeatedly. A Chinese company will always feel more comfortable dealing with a Chinese company.  I think it is just down to human nature to feel comfortable to what you can relate to. Despite our own industry’s best efforts, we haven’t reached a truly ‘global world’ yet! Local presence and cultural fit are still extremely important. AG: Does Xplanation have any plans for South America or other areas of the globe? Veronique: Our plans for the next 3+ years are principally strengthening significantly in Germany, the UK, and USA. Beyond that… many exciting things are coming! Not another geographical location, but we do have other a number of plans on the horizon which we’re very excited about and will contribute substantially to our continued growth. Keep your eyes open for news over the coming few quarters!