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How to Make Money Working from Home as a Spanish Interpreter

Posted by Dr. Nelva Lee on Aug 19, 2020 6:52:00 PM
Dr. Nelva Lee

Fluency in two languages is a highly marketable skill. Many companies are global today, and almost all countries have immigrants - and that means courts, medical facilities, schools, call centers, and other businesses need translators in different languages for customers or clients who speak limited English. Spanish is one of the most common second languages in the United States. If you can speak and write English and Spanish, you may be able to earn a full-time or part time living without leaving home.

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Benefits Of Being A Freelance Translator

Work from home jobs have several advantages over traditional office work. As an independent contractor working a remote job:

  • You are more able to set your schedule
  • You’ll save money on wardrobe, transportation, and childcare
  • You get to spend more time with your family
  • You can work from anywhere there is WiFi

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), more than 76,100 people work as translators or interpreters. That’s almost the number of people that Delta Air Lines employs

The pay is good, too. The median pay for interpreter jobs is $46,000 to $52,000 per year, depending on the employer, education, years of work experience, foreign languages you’re fluent in, and interpretation services you provide. 

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What You Need To Translate From Home

Besides fluency in written and verbal communication skills, Spanish interpreter work requires excellent communication skills, at least a high school diploma or equivalent (some jobs require a bachelor’s degree), and some basic equipment. Some language services jobs will also require a background check, since information may be sensitive.

Get Your Interpreter Certification

MiTio offers a range of courses to help you get the Spanish interpreter certification you need. Whether your ambition is to become a medical interpreter, a court interpreter, or some other type of telephone/video interpreter, our courses will help you get started.

Home Office Equipment And Software

Setting up your home office to provide translation services has just a few basic requirements. You’ll need:

  • A quiet room - a dedicated office is nice to have, but any quiet, comfortable location will do. Your office could be a kitchen table or a lounge chair by the pool - as long as you’re appropriately dressed, of course.
  • A laptop, computer, tablet or smartphone -  Because some positions require document translation or transcription, a laptop or computer are preferable
  • A good headset - helpful, but not required
  • Reliable, private WiFi service - Information is often sensitive. You won’t be able to work from Starbucks. 
  • A Spanish-English translation software - in case you need to check a word
  • Video chat service (such as Skype or Zoom) for audio and video communication with clients

 

With your language skills, after meeting these few requirements, you should be able to secure a high-paying home position in the translation services field. 

medical interpretering career

What Remote Language Interpreters Do

As a remote language interpreter, you may be hired full time to work for a single company or work on-demand for several clients. You get to decide how you want to structure your work. There are advantages to each.

As a full time employee of a single company, you may be entitled to benefits and paid a salary, just the same as if you were working on-site. Since many companies have different offices in different locations, you may be called upon to answer calls from different offices. 

Some language interpreters work at remote call centers. Many service businesses, like airlines, retailers, and television providers, hire people to handle their phone customer service from home. DirecTV, for example, routes calls to remote workers, who work on a computer logged in to the company server to help you solve your problems.

You may also work as an independent contractor for several clients, usually on a per-job or hourly basis. The disadvantage is that you have to do your own taxes and bookkeeping. To balance this, you have more freedom to schedule your own work, you are usually paid more, and you can fire a client and replace them without losing your entire income.

The work itself may be varied. You may translate live while a medical professional and a patient are having a conversation, or you may translate written transcripts of medical notes, videos, documents, or court proceedings. 

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Where To Find Spanish Interpreter Jobs 

Searching for a Spanish interpreter job is relatively easy. All job search engines have foreign language translation job postings. Polish up your resume, and take a look at all the types of interpreter job postings.

General job board searches:

Remote work job boards:

Freelance translation service job postings:

With most job boards, you’ll be able to set job alerts to let you know as soon as a new Spanish translator job is posted.

When you take MiTio’s 160-hour Medical Interpreter Training Program, you’re guaranteed job opportunities through our corporate partners. We work closely with companies that need bilingual translator services in medical fields to offer our grads the best job opportunities on the market.

How To Make More Translating From Home

Naturally, the more qualifications you have, the more jobs you qualify for, and the better jobs you’ll be able to get. Natural language ability is wonderful and may help you snag any job, but education gets you higher paying jobs. 

 

The medical field is one area always looking for translators in many different languages. If you already have experience in the medical field, getting hospital translator training or mental health interpreter training can enhance your career and take you in new directions. You’re likely using your interpreting skills every day on the job; why not leverage it for better pay and a more impressive job title?

The State Of Remote Work

Remote work was already on the rise. A 2019 Quickbooks study reported that 14% of people said being an independent contractor was their primary job, but way back in 2014, Pew Research noted that self-employed Americans often have employees of their own. Adding self-employed people and the people working for them together accounted for 30% of the nation’s workforce, or 44 million jobs. Add in full or part time remote workers employed by companies, and that number is exponentially larger.

The Covid-19 pandemic has changed the way a lot of businesses work, and we predict that many of them will retain a work-from-home model. From a business standpoint, it makes sense. Having most of your workforce working remotely reduces the need for office/building space and the necessary services -electricity, water, equipment, insurance, maintenance- required. You also have a larger workforce to draw from when you aren’t limited to only the people with the skills you need who live within driving distance. With a little consideration given to operating hours, businesses can be coast-to-coast, tapping into Los Angeles talent from a New York location.

Zoom video services are a game-changer for many professions. Virtual court proceedings are being held across the country, and this may prove to be such a cost-saver that it becomes the norm. In fact, so much has changed that we think the future of remote translators is going to grow much faster than expected.

 

 Get started today and reap all the benefits of making a great living from the comfort of your own home.

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