What is DTP? Part II
The capabilities of the individual computer programs are constantly growing, and therefore we cannot say that a leaflet can only be created in Adobe FrameMaker, while Photoshop is not suitable for this purpose. That program can easily be used to prepare the vast majority of materials for print. The situation is similar with the preparation of documents in the form of text files, where the capabilities of the applications are constantly increasing. It is important for the program to be easy to use and to accelerate the work, for example, due to the possibility of using templates. Certain programs never gained much popularity, even though they are available free of charge and they offer a plethora of options – such applications include i.a. Gimp.
The cost and the valuation of DTP services
DTP services can be priced in three different ways:
- Price per page
- Price per one image
- Price per hour
The majority of translation agencies prefer the "per page" billing method, because it is directly related to the way in which the translations are priced. Before starting work on DTP the translation agency has to assess the level of complexity of a given project - a simple formatting will be much less expensive than the one that requires a lot of time.
During the valuation of the project, the following issues are taken into account:
- number of tables
- number of images
- number of charts
When a given document is very long and only contains several such "inconveniences", the translation agency may forego a separate fee for the DTP services, which is beneficial for the customer.
DTP services are very difficult to valuate (much like translations), and because of that you may also encounter situations where an hourly rate is used. In this billing method you are essentially paying for the knowledge and skills of the person who is editing the document. This is the best solution if the document contains a lot of images (CAD files or blueprints). A DTP specialist will be able to insert the translated text in the appropriate places.
As we've already mentioned, each project that contains complex formatting is different, so we should carefully determine the valuation method that will be the best for you. Unfortunately, many people believe that DTP services should be provided for free. Let's imagine a situation where a translator is supposed to translate more than a dozen pages that mainly contain tables and pictures with descriptions. The formatting of such a document could take more time than the translation itself, which has to result in a higher price.
Many translators use a different method to price such services – they add a certain percentage to the price of the translation, for example.
Why is it worth to use DTP services?
Simply speaking, because they require a lot of experience and time. The formatting of a text involves the use of many advanced functions of the programs, which are not used in everyday work. It's better to pay for the formatting of a text and not waste time doing it on your own. Professional DTP services are a lot more affordable and provide great results.