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The Fine Line: Phone vs. E-mail Communication

At many points during the day as an Account Manager – whether I have a price quote to provide, to ask or to answer project-specific questions, or to get feedback on a finalized project – I find myself asking whether I should call or e-mail a client. In general, phone communication serves as a much faster means of asking and answering various questions, and is especially helpful in clearing up doubts or concerns right off the bat. As a rule of thumb, I tend to follow-up these conversations with e-mails, detailing what was discussed as well as next steps.

Of course, there are times when e-mail is more practical, as in situations where formal written communication is called for (such as price quotes or written approval) or when there are a few practical and relatively straightforward aspects to be cleared up. In general, there is a fine line that a customer service representative should observe, between bothering a client with incessant questions and not getting enough information. We strive to produce the most tailored and high quality translation/interpretation project, for which we frequently need to communicate with clients on a number of points. A translation is a process that begins with communication and exchange of sometimes very detailed information, so it is important to keep lines of contact open as much as possible and for clients to be prepared to participate in this process.

At the beginning of a big or complex project, it is always good to make contact on the phone, even if briefly, to get an idea of expectations, deadlines, budgets, etc. Once the main issues have been cleared up, e-mail communication tends to be most effective, as both parties can read and respond at their convenience and have a chain of information.  It is a good way to keep all project information straight.

Information is fundamental for a high quality product, so feel free to get in touch with us at any time – either by e-mail or by phone.

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