Both Czech and foreign translation agencies have shown significant differences in pricing. With standard translations (without legalization), Merciere applies the fairest accounting unit – source word. Source word is defined as a word in the source document, which is translated into the foreign (target) language. For the client, this is a transparent accounting method, whereby one can easily estimate the price from the Word document file.
Transparency, honesty, simplicity... this is the philosophy Merciere agency follows.
CAT tools are responsible for this. As a first step, they always perform a preliminary analysis to identify the amount of text and repetitions. Once the analysis has been completed, the word count is displayed, along with the percentage of repetitions within both the document itself and Translation Memory (TM) (where applicable).
There are still many agencies on the market which do not accept pricing per source word and insist on pricing per standard page. An unaware client can be faced with pricing per standard page, defined as follows: total characters count without spaces + word count divided by 1800.
Another definition states: total character count, including spaces, divided by 1600. In some cases you can even see: 1500 characters including spaces. Accounting is based on the target language and, in this way, the client does not know the cost of the translation until the very last moment. Will it be 100 EUR, 120 EUR even 150 EUR? The differences can be significant.
CAT tools enable accounting per source word, with the exception of manuscript transcription and translation of poor quality scans. These are accounted per target word. All other formats like PDF, high-quality scans, Excel files, Powerpoint files, HTML, XML, vector graphics from InDesign, FrameMaker, PageMaker or CAD files from Corel, AutoCAD etc. can be processed using CAT tools implementing only slight adjustments.