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Thread: Interested in outsourcing 3D architectural animation, what questions should I ask?

  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    Antonio D
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    Lightbulb Interested in outsourcing 3D architectural animation, what questions should I ask?

    I'm thinking about outsourcing abroad. I'm wondering what important questions I should ask (besides the obvious - deadline, cost), and what answers I should expect back?

    Also I wonder about payment. If I send money to China and they don't deliver, how does that work? What is the industry standard. Is it half deposit, half upon completion?

    Thanks,
    Antonio

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    Veteran Member okmijun's Avatar
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    Default Re: Interested in outsourcing 3D architectural animation, what questions should I ask

    I would personally checkt the history of company/freelancer I work with.
    Also, good comunication via mail/SKP is essential for good job.
    Second, the lowest price is not the best offer you can get, almost never.
    And ofcourse, good online portofolio is a must, as for every other job...
    ...
    If you wish some outsourcing, please send PM or mail via trideval@yahoo.com for details, etc....
    Last edited by okmijun; January 9th, 2014 at 09:48 AM.

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    Veteran Member VelvetElvis's Avatar
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    Default Re: Interested in outsourcing 3D architectural animation, what questions should I ask

    There is no "industry standard" when it comes to payments. It's whatever the outsourcing company demands or whatever you are will to compromise with. You really need to look in to how that company handles feedback. In my opinion, this is where 99% of all outsourcing companies fail. They are absolutely horrid at taking feedback and implementing it properly. You also need to look at the time zone delays and their work hours compared to yours. Are they working while you sleep? If so, then communication will have delays to it. How well do they speak your native language, assuming it's English. Sure the owner or PR guy might speak it well, but if they can't translate what you say to their team in the correct manner, then you get mistakes in your renders.

    Why are you looking to outsource abroad? Do you think you'll get better quality? Do you really think it will be cheaper? After all of the headaches involved, most outsourcing fails to be a viable cost and quality effective option.
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    Scott S.

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    Default Re: Interested in outsourcing 3D architectural animation, what questions should I ask

    I would like to see the day when people outsource work just because they can't find local help in their country or simply it is done better some place else. Sending work outside of your frontiers just because is cheaper it is an abuse of emerging countries and their professionals. The word Globalization, against its definition, only work for one side of the chain, top power get cheaper labor and wider income while these new professional work extended hours for a very low pay and if they do not agree their position is taken for a cheaper bid. When architects ask me if I outsource to do freelancing, I ask them if they outsource theirs CD to Russia or China because is cheaper. Many excuses come and the abuse and exploitation of the poor continues continues.
    It is sad to see many artist, complaining for years about these new emerging countries competing with ridiculous prices just to get the work, but later when those artist are in a better position and need help, outsource to cheap labor is the first option that they take, respect for collages of the same profession or humanity at the end it been long lost in this rush to make money.

    Someone time ago told me that in some country the poor working class income was 5k USD and this guy was charging $400 per rendering, if you think, if they do one rendering per week ( that I bet they do more than that) $400x52 weeks that's $20800 USD so that person after one year working will be well over medium class in his country, that ever happens?? are we making millionaires all over the word with this "Globalization"?? I don't see that happening.

    Sorry guys I won't bother you more with my complains about it, but hopefully I m not the only one who see this and try to fix it.

    Fco.
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    "It is good to renew one's wonder"

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    Default Re: Interested in outsourcing 3D architectural animation, what questions should I ask

    We were forced to use a Chinese company due to a large project's volume and timeline.

    To answer your questions, we didn't have to pay upfront but would pay after every 4 renderings or so. If it's a smaller job it seems like they will take a chance and be ok with getting paid upon completion. We just used PayPal with no problems. Communication was a problem. The first draft would be amazing but making changes was a bumpy process - especially subtle ones.
    Last edited by heni30; January 9th, 2014 at 06:49 PM.

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    Default Re: Interested in outsourcing 3D architectural animation, what questions should I ask

    I really think you get what you pay for. If you use a local freelancer / studio then it may cost more in terms of initial cost, but as mentioned already, the time involved in managing and organising a foreign studio can be huge.

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    Veteran Member aristocratic3d's Avatar
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    Default Re: Interested in outsourcing 3D architectural animation, what questions should I ask

    To be honest a very good rendering studio some time charge even higher than farms in the west. In-case you may not be aware of that.
    The best way is to search for a mix of experience and value. they provide pretty good quality but charge less. Being an artist from subcontinent I have some experience and I think you should make the following things clear:

    1. As George wrote, "The first draft would be amazing but making changes was a bumpy process - especially subtle ones."
    To avoid this you need to make sure how many modification round they/he will accept. (we usually accept unlimited modification round unless its a major change).

    2. Yes! make sure he speaks English well enough. Otherwise his nice work wont do any good because he wont understand your project requirement well and that will cause a lot of hassle.

    3. Make sure you see exactly similar rendering in their portfolio that you are looking for.

    4. Make sure they have some good reference from any studio in the west.

    5. Make sure they have plenty of renderings in their gallery section that proves their solid history.

    6. Make a rate structure (i.e how much for a typical interior/exterior) Also make an agreement about how long they will continue with the same rate. Because if they get better clients they may increase the rate.

    7. From my experience every freelancer struggle with a lot of things at the beginning and his client become the victim. so work with some one who has at least four years of professional working experience.

    8. Never work with any 3rd party agency. Also try to avoid project managers. (most of the times a project manager himself is not an artist. you can only run general communication with him not many detail of the project.)

    9. Some artists who are not good enough at their work manage to develop some nice renderings ( if you are clever you will notice its the architecture that makes the rendering look good not his lighting or environment) and put them into their portfolio. They will most likely fail with your project because the architecture of your project is simple. They dont know how to make a simple thing to look good.



    Regarding project guarantee:
    An established studio or individual will never flee with a few hundred $$. Its the armature ones who recently started can do this harm. they can simply flee and change their portfolio website (sounds funny but true).
    I have clients in the west whom I send invoice on a monthly basis. and for some client weekly basis and for some clients when the amount reaches a certain number. For the new clients I request 30% of the total project fee upfront as security.

    I hope that helps!

    Thanks!
    Abdullah

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