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Cactus Communications Freelance Translator Reviews

Updated Apr 21, 2021

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Found 29 of over 818 reviews

2.5
43%
Recommend to a Friend
38%
Approve of CEO
Cactus Communications Co-Founder and CEO   Abhishek Goel (no image)
Abhishek Goel
8 Ratings
  1. 3.0
    Former Employee

    Decent work for students

    Mar 11, 2016 - Freelance Translator 
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    I'm an undergraduate who has some publishing experience. The work at Cactus was definitely helpful, in that the nature of it still revolves around my field. Also, some of the papers are interesting, and the pay boiled down to around 20 - 25 USD/hour, which is pretty good (I've also seen some benefits from the current exchange rate.).

    Cons

    While this is in contrary to some of the other reviews, for me, at times, the work was excessive. I was completely exhausted for some time. Perhaps this applies to my department only, but given the number of names that appear as reviewers/crosscheckers, there is a severe lack of freelancers. Also, surprisingly, the original text to translate is often written very badly in the original language to be translated from as well.

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    8 people found this review helpful
  2. 1.0
    Current Employee

    Is the review done by other freelance translators?

    Aug 5, 2020 - Freelance Translator 
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    The translation desk is polite and always respond in time.

    Cons

    I am suspicious that the review was done by other freelance translators who nitpicks on any possible variations in terminology or expressions to give out a bad QI score so they can outcompete the new freelance translators. Sometimes the terminology and expressions could be translated in more than one ways in the literature. There were times the glossary for the terminology was already provided by the client, followed by the translator but changed by the reviewer. It's frustrating no matter how much research you have done in this area before translation, the reviewer always finds a way to pick on you.

    3 people found this review helpful
  3. 3.0
    Former Freelancer

    Too buggy

    Apr 21, 2021 - Freelance Translator/Interpreter 
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    Has all advantages of freelancing

    Cons

    They bug you in 3-4 am.

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  4. 4.0
    Current Freelancer, less than 1 year

    High flexibility, well-organized company, low stability

    Nov 24, 2020 - Freelance Translator in Seoul
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    It's basically a freelance job, meaning you have high flexibility. It is an international company with lots of branches in Asia. The job is pretty well organized, you will receive an email once the job is available for you. If you accept the job, you will see the detailed description including the number of words, fee, a special request from the client, relevant area, etc.

    Cons

    The workload really varies every month, and you cannot do anything for getting more jobs. Good as a side job, but not suitable as the main job for sure. Also, the deadline is pretty tight, usually you need to get back to them with the translated doc within 1 or 2 days, maximum 5?

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  5. 2.0
    Current Freelancer, more than 1 year

    Pay so low its laughable.

    Jan 31, 2021 - Freelance Editor and Translator 
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    Freelance. Experience. Exposure to Academic work before it is released.

    Cons

    Ridiculously low page. Pay penalties for a client's dislikes, even when they don't speak English well enough to articulate what they didn't like. Short deadlines that undermine work quality. Again, stupidly low pay.

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    1 person found this review helpful

    Cactus Communications Response

    Associate Freelancer Management

    Hi, Thank you for sharing your experience with us. We are glad that you like engaging with pre-release academic work. However, we are sorry to hear that you feel inadequately compensated for your efforts. As an organization we try our best to make sure that our editors have an overall good experience with us. Regarding client satisfaction, the assignments editors submit are required to be in line with the customer expectations. Their feedback is important to us and fulfilling their requirements is essential for a continued relationship with them. As a service provider in a dynamic industry, we have little sway over deadlines. These are decided by customer requirements. However, we do intervene to ensure that editors have the necessary support to fulfil deadline conformance. We have a dedicated 24/7 support team that resolves their queries and doubts and guides them along the process of timely submissions. If you are currently facing any issues, please feel free to reach out to me at amrita.anand@cactusglobal.com. I’ll be happy to look into them! Regards, Amrita Anand Associate, Freelancer Management

  6. 1.0
    Former Freelancer, less than 1 year

    Business model designed to devalue and scapegoat translators

    Apr 21, 2020 - Freelance Translator 
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    I cannot say anything positive about this company.

    Cons

    Translations are reviewed by in-house reviewers, who are non-native English speakers with no expertise in the subject area incentivized to give out wildly disproportionate and unfair scores (so-called Quality Indexes, QIs) to cut translators´ pay. Every time a low QI is given, the translator is asked to send an E-mail in his / her defense (otherwise, work dries up) - so I ended up having to spend numerous unpaid hours responding to completely unfounded comments about my translation. Further, every time a client is unhappy with a project, an "external editor" is hired by Cactus to "assess" the validity of the client´s complaint. This "external editor" is hired to validate the client´s negative feedback and is on a mission to nitpick anything that could be used to scapegoat the translator. If there is nothing to nitpick, reasons will be fabricated to give the translator a bad rating. The translator is then required to defend his / her position, having to again expend a lot of time without being paid. The most frustrating thing about the entire process is that no matter how well one explains how utterly unfounded the in-house reviewers´/ external editors´ claims are, the translator will be the one receiving punitive measures, i.e. receiving work no one wants or no work at all. Towards the end, I was allocated translation projects that no one wanted for $8 that required circa 5 hours´ work. I can´t speak for other job positions, but if you are contemplating becoming a freelance translator at Cactus Communications, please stay away from this company, no matter how desperate you are - they will treat you like garbage and throw you under the bus at every given opportunity.

    2 people found this review helpful

    Cactus Communications Response

    Associate Vice President, Translations

    Hello and thank you for your feedback. Firstly, I am sorry to hear that you’ve had a negative experience with us. As an organization, we are quite conscious of our association with our freelancers and are constantly working towards improving their experiences. However, I do wish to clarify a few misconceptions from your feedback, so that we can then constructively work towards making your future experiences better. To start with, I assure you that the perception you’ve shared of our quality process is not accurate for the translation department, although I can understand the reason for this misconception stemming from piecing together information about other departments. Our quality process involves a senior native translator who objectively checks the quality from a bilingual perspective, followed by an academic English editor who checks the output for English language quality. Having said this, I understand that your experience with us did not reassure you of our process. Hence, if your point of contact has been unable to address this issue, I invite you to write to me at saroshs@cactusglobal.com and I will be glad to work with you. Secondly, I would like to clarify this misconception about work being withheld as a punitive measure. No company actively restricts its own business processes or affects its customers’ experience. It would be absurd to prioritize penalization over running processes smoothly. Similarly, we make it a point to allocate work to all freelancers that provide quality as needed by our customers. In fact, in the translation department, there are scores of confirmed examples of translators getting work that suffices their month’s requirements. With this, I assure you that we are always looking forward to strengthening our associations with our freelancers. Do write to me or your point of contact on how we can do this together! Warm regards, Sarosh Syed, AVP, Translation

  7. 3.0
    Current Freelancer

    Flexibility but not too many assignments

    Dec 28, 2020 - Freelance Translator in Chapel Hill, NC
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    1.Working time flexibility 2. You can work remotely 3. Colleagues are really nice

    Cons

    I can't get assignments in months.

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  8. 1.0
    Current Freelancer, more than 1 year

    Run away at all cost

    Jan 17, 2021 - Freelance Translator 
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    None I can think of except stepping stone

    Cons

    Super low pay for the same job, a terrible management team that will try their best to provide you low pay without any increase in salary. Also, the management will lie that they will increase your salary, but never follow up. If you follow up, they will say that they will do it, but never actually do it.

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    1 person found this review helpful
  9. 3.0
    Former Freelancer, more than 3 years

    Better than most, but not the best.

    Aug 16, 2020 - Freelance Translator 
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    I only have limited experience working with other translation companies. But from what I've experienced, it's an okay translation pipeline. There are usually steps in the translation/editing process to catch issues and errors before the content reaches the client. Also, as they handle academic papers, there's a steady flow of work available.

    Cons

    I've noticed that the translation reviewers might not be the best at reviewing your work. Also, as they are based in India, the response time frame with the head office might not work with your schedule.

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  10. 3.0
    Current Freelancer

    Good Place to Get a Start

    Jan 26, 2020 - Freelance Translator 
    Recommend
    CEO Approval
    Business Outlook

    Pros

    A good place for new translators to get a start Extremely flexible Good task management system

    Cons

    Assignments are not always based on subject area expertise Translation assignments seem tailored to minimize cost at the expense of quality sometimes Time constraints are at times unreasonable

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