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Gengo Freelance Translator Reviews

Updated 29 Oct 2020

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3.1
56%
Recommend to a Friend
66%
Approve of CEO
Gengo CEO & Co-Founder Matthew Romaine (no image)
Matthew Romaine
6 Ratings
  1. "Good system on paper, awful freelance experience in real life"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Diversity & Inclusion
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Freelancer - Freelance Translator 
    Doesn't Recommend

    I worked at Gengo for more than 5 years

    Pros

    -Work from home around your own schedule -Payments usually made on time

    Cons

    - Senior translator reviews can be overly harsh (and sometimes subjective or plain wrong) and disputes rarely go anywhere - Clients regularly submit pro level jobs as standard level jobs and Gengo does nothing about this - Pay is low for the quality expected and there isn't even very much work available to pick up any more - The automated platform makes it so there is little human contact with the company and translators are given terrible quality source material to work with (including documents where text has been inserted in picture format by clients to get around word counting and make the price cheaper and work is usually presented without any kind of context, notes, preferred terms, etc.) - There is zero leeway for mistakes. If you make one too many (and the threshold is not very high at all) you will be stripped of the ability to work. There is too much responsibility placed on one single translator for the pay they receive and it can be stressful sending a job off for review in the knowledge that no matter how perfect you think it was, if the senior translator doesn't agree with a certain bit of phrasing (or you happen to be human and innocently misinterpreted something) your ability to earn could be left hanging in the balance.

  2. "Fine"

    4.0
    Current Freelancer - Freelance Pro Translator in Tokyo

    I have been working at Gengo for more than 3 years

    Pros

    There is a variety of jobs

    Cons

    There are few jobs depending on the language pair


  3. "Good system and interface"

    5.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Freelancer - Freelance Translator in Oslo
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Gengo for more than a year

    Pros

    Fair pay. They give you some personal support to grow as a contributor. Customers can mark you off as preferred if they choose

    Cons

    Jobs arrive in bursts sometimes with days of almost nothing between

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  4. Helpful (3)

    "Gengo got progressively worse with every year"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Freelance Translator in Karlsruhe, Baden-Wurttemberg
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at Gengo part-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Flexible schedule – but tasks are very often claimed by other translators within milliseconds.

    Cons

    Gengo has never been amazing, but they truly get worse and worse every year. The pay is awful, the managers and senior translators are arrogant and the test expectations (especially "pro" and higher) are absolutely ridiculous, especially considering the pay. They just don't want you to earn more since that would mean less profit for them. Over the course of my working life I have proven my excellent language skills numerous times and they still reject me. Not to mention that getting a job is like gambling – immediately clicking on the notification is frequently too late: another translator has already claimed the job within like 20 milliseconds. I had a translator score (measuring the quality) of almost 10 (the maximum) for years, but then they overhauled the feedback system one or two years ago and I'm hovering between 6 and 7 now, which results in less work being available for me. The rules are getting stricter and stricter without any increase in pay. The weighting is nonsensical (e.g. why do three 50-word jobs count as much or more than a 2000 word job?). The feedback system is nonsense and really just a way to suppress your score and force you to work harder because you get less jobs with a lower score. However, the quality of work stands in no relation to the pay whatsoever. A "real" translator (with a degree, etc.) would never work for the abysmal amount that you earn, yet they expect a comparable quality of us. Plus, many jobs have completely broken grammar and spelling, literal gibberish, and Gengo still dares to give you a bad score for your translation (despite making it coherent) while the source is just absolute garbage. I do not recommend working at Gengo.

  5. "beware! treats translators like machines"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Freelancer - Freelance Translator/Interpreter 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Gengo

    Pros

    big volume of jobs? (despite the low rates)

    Cons

    it basically treats translators as machines. the deadline is super tight, very inhumane, they do not take your rest time, weekends, holidays into account(some translation agencies do). I would say the time the provided should qualify for a rush fee at more prestigious translation companies The review system. translations will be reviewed by terrible reviewers and the system is harsh too. You would get a low score(i used to get 0) for minor mistakes. the rate is getting lower and lower. They incorporated post-editting tasks so as to lower the rate, which is not very decent in the beginning(considering the impossibly and unncessarily high standard and deadline). My suggestion to freelance translators is to boycott this company as the presence of it will only make translators' future more dystopian.

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  6. "Bad testtranslations with mistakes"

    1.0
    Current Freelancer - Freelance Translator 
    Doesn't Recommend

    I have been working at Gengo

    Pros

    I can't find some positive points

    Cons

    You have to be lucky to pass the test, because all 4 to 5 translations you can choose, contain errors! With such bad test translations into German, I don't want to be a customer. Not even the simplest norms, such as correct application of punctuations, are adhered to.

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  7. "Was better before"

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    Former Freelancer - Freelance Translator 
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I worked at Gengo for more than 3 years

    Pros

    - Flexible - Payments on time, as requested - Convenient and easy - Usually enough jobs to find one without having to watch the website 24/7 for any new posting

    Cons

    - becoming more and more automated, with automated ratings. It was becoming more like a ... human google translate than actual translation by the end, which led me to leave. It may be efficient, but don't expect to feel like you have any flexibility/choices in how to translate.

  8. Helpful (1)

    "Getting worse and worse"

    2.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Freelancer - Freelance Translator in Amsterdam
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Gengo for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Flexible work. Pay for PRO jobs pretty okay

    Cons

    Reviews are insane. Matters of taste are marked erroneous, algorithm punishes for small mistakes. Lots of scam/spam messages recently that aren't filtered out by the review team.

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  9. Helpful (6)

    "Unprofessional company (low quality and poor rates)"

    1.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Freelance Translator in Katowice
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Gengo part-time for more than a year

    Pros

    - Can't think of any

    Cons

    - Low rates (very low) - Not too many clients - Reviewers translate for Gengo as well (while they shouldn't, they should just review) and get very little money for that. Therefore, they have a clear incentive to dismiss translators' work (the fewer translators in their language pair, the better: more jobs available for them in their translators' role). - Reviewers rule: their reviews can't be appealed.

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  10. Helpful (2)

    "Only as a side job"

    4.0
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Freelancer - Freelance Translator 
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No Opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Gengo for less than a year

    Pros

    You can work from home, in my language pair they give you enough time to complete the job, pay is ok. You can work on a variety of topics and clients, from apps to philanthropic organizations.

    Cons

    Not enough projects to become a full-time job. One day you can make $50, the next day only $2. They only pay your rates in USD and via PayPal, which is not so convenient in my case. Their review criteria and overall scoring method are cryptic.

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