Question by nova: Should there be an user fee for folks who require a translator?
Little inside background before you can answer the question. I work at well known cable company taking incoming calls from our customers. We have some direct hire Spanish speaking reps but not nearly as many as we can use so company hires professional translation service at cost of $ 35,000 per month which obviously gets passed on to customers.Of all the dozens of languages that we can ask for 99% of all requests are for folks asking for Spanish translators. Also very often at some point during the call customer begins talking to reps directly, in passable English disregarding the translator that they requested and was provided to them at no charge.This is where the problem is, assessing even a modest user fee of $ 5.00 would lead to a lot more at least trying to speak Englsih and by doing so practicing and getting better all the time. Both my parents are Spanish immigrants and they worked hard to speak English made sure we spoke English as to not have a lifelong crutch.Four months ago company initiated a $ 4.00 “convenience” fee for anyone who called in to make a payment either by credit,debit card or electronic check. This is and has been in place with many credit card companies for years now.Most calling either already had their svc interrupted or on verge of being interrupted calling in at last moment. Now the automated system takes their payments at no charge and customer never speaks to live agent.After some initial confusion, bitching and moaning we have cut down on reps taking payments minimum 70%. It’s the customer’s choice which method to use.I believe same would happen with translator user fee and don’t see how can be sued for this and does not mean we don’t value their business, just speak English, have your own translator or pay the fee.Etchically it’s no more wrong then vendor who sells glass of watered down beer for $ 8.00 each or bottled water for $ 5.00. What message are they sending to their customers?
Answer by Mildred S
from an american point of view i think yes , this would be great. i am tired of calling government agencies and being spoken to in Spanish and hearing English ten minutes into the automated voice mail prompts. i think government agencies need to deliver in english. spanish second if at all. from a business point of view, do you think it sends a message that you do not value your customer ? a business does not care about who pays the subscription. money is money. does it send a message that there is a surcharge to get customer service if you are hispanic ? i think you’ll get slammed with lots of lawsuits / angry people that will cost your business more than absorbing the extra cost of translation. I agree if you are going to live in another country i believe your parents are right , you should learn the language. I wish wish that all immigrants / new citizens had to pass some sort of basic language proficiency exam . No need to be experts but demonstrate basic language usage.
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