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Lionbridge Review: Why I Am Glad I Failed as an Internet Assessor

Updated on April 28, 2016

Lionbridge Profile

Lionbridge Technologies was founded in 1996, and defines itself as a leading provider of globalisation solutions. The headquarters are in Waltham, MA, United States.

Services offered include:

  • Global testing

  • onDemand translation

  • Content development

  • Software localisation

  • Interpreter services

In its 2014 Annual Report Lionbridge stated that it has a database of more than 100,000 independent workers in 100+ countries providing crowdsourcing services including translation, online marketing, global content management, and testing solutions.

Lionbridge reported a total revenue of $490.6 million in 2014. Main clients that year were Microsoft (21% of revenue) and Google (12%). Lionbridge generated approximately $20.5 million in cash flow from operations during 2014.

Lionbridge is a publicly listed company trading on the Nasdaq Global Market under the symbol “LIOX”.

Marketing Challenges

In its promotional video Lionbridge explains how they can help clients overcome their marketing challenges. Screenshot from promo video
In its promotional video Lionbridge explains how they can help clients overcome their marketing challenges. Screenshot from promo video | Source

Online Jobs and the Internet Assessor Role


Lionbridge will make different types of online jobs available for crowdsourcing. You need to check the website for available vacancies in your region (jobs are location-dependent).

Lionbridge will make vacancies available from time to time depending on client demand. One of the most popular roles advertised is that of Internet Assessor.

The reason why I joined Lionbridge was to get some more freelance writing work. As there were no other opportunities available but an Internet Assessor vacancy, I applied for it.

Social Media Channels

Screenshot from Lionbridge promo video
Screenshot from Lionbridge promo video

The Application Process


Considering this company has been operating for 20 years I had expected a sleeker recruitment process and user interface. The workers database is hosted on a SAP platform: it looks dated and could do with a bit of sprucing up. Aesthetic considerations aside, creating a profile is like uploading your CV on a traditional job search engine site: you need to list your qualifications, past experience, skills and upload your updated CV.

Lead time to review applications is two weeks.

A few days after submitting your application you receive an email with your confirmed hourly rate (company confidential) and documents you need to digitally sign to agree to start contract work.

You need to sign a non disclosure agreement – the company will take action against you if you leak information.


You then need to wait another 8-10 days to receive the information about the exam you need to pass to become an assessor.

Fail

Screenshot from email reply
Screenshot from email reply

The Exam and Why I Failed


All information about the exam is company confidential. There are three exams you need to pass, one of which is a multiple choice questionnaire based on the exam guidelines you are given beforehand (at the time of writing, the guidelines were 157 pages long and the recommendation is for you to set aside a few hours to study them in detail).

I started reading the guidelines and had to stop half way through. I was having doubts on whether this type of role suited me – detail work is not my forte. Against better wisdom, I attempted the multiple choice questionnaire (open book) testing you on your knowledge of the guidelines. I obviously failed, but I wanted to fail as I realised that being an assessor would bore me to tears.

However, I am sure other people would find the role quite fascinating as it gives you an excellent insight on how good websites are supposed to provide information and meet users' needs.

The Black Market for Exam Papers


While researching information for this article I found out that there is a black market for exam papers results. While I did not look into this further, I saw websites gathering email addresses with the view to email documents to candidates at a price to help them pass the selection process.

Pros and Cons


Pros

  • flexible work
  • working between 10 and 20 hours a week

Cons

  • first payment after 60 days
  • low to medium hourly rate of pay
  • some jobs can be tedious so you need a lot of discipline and self-motivation
  • workers in internet forums said that response by email from the support team and team leaders is slow

The Verdict

I will make a more informed assessment once I try applying for other roles (if I feel inclined to, as the application process is too time consuming in my view). Having looked at ratings of the company in the public domain, it seems that there is a 50/50 split between happy and disgruntled workers.

2016 UPDATE: no other roles became available - no writing jobs, no translation jobs, just mechanical jobs paying pennies/cents.

I'm happy to hear about your experiences so feel free to add your comment.

Please also check my other articles on working from home: Clickworker review and Unbabel review.

Lionbridge Poll

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Comments

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    • profile image

      Gia 10 months ago

      That test is a huge waste of time. The technical support take a whole day to respond to an email. I don't advise anyone to waste their time.

    • paolaenergya profile image
      Author

      Paola Bassanese 10 months ago from London

      I totally agree with you - they make it sound like it's such a huge privilege even to take the test, as if you were training to become an astronaut. You need to have a very specific type of personality to perform these tests: you shouldn't apply your own judgement or common sense because you need to memorise all the rules and apply them mechanically. I am sure a computer should be doing those tasks (which I am sure they already do 80% of the time). What I also don't understand is the pay structure: it's not worth spending time on doing these tasks for a freelancer, and not even as a student as you must allocate several hours without a break to click through pages. That time is better spent elsewhere. I only wanted to take on more writing work but it turns out available projects are mundane search results checking.

    • profile image

      Cristian 8 months ago

      Hi paolaenegya, I find your review a non valid opinion since you did not even pass the exam. I work for Lionbridge as an evaluator and it´s fine for me, allows me to pay several bills and gives me time to spend with my two little kids. I admit the exam was tough, understanding they need you to follow specific rules and guidelines, no discussion about that. They do not want you to give your personal opinion. It´s not a mechanical work since you need to rate some search results and evaluate them according to the guidelines, using different criteria. The work is very flexible, you do not need to "allocate several hours", in fact you have a limit of work, 20 hours max per week and 10 min, sometimes you are allowed to do 30 hours. For all the people that are looking for a home based job, extra cash, this "mundane search results checking" job seems to be fine. And some words for Gia: may be for you that test was a waste of time. depends on your needs. A test is a test, something usually boring, no one likes tests, but if its a vehicle to something ahead, in this case for having extra money, so lets welcome the test.

    • profile image

      Lisa 8 months ago

      I absolutely love my job at Lionbridge as an internet assessor!

    • profile image

      Melissa 7 months ago

      This article/review is pointless. You have not worked for them, so you don't even know what the real job looks like. It is not a mechanical job, we must develop a criteria based on the guidelines and apply it in different scenarios. Is very challenging because most of the times we use our best judgment. The tasks are very unpredictable and surprising. And it is totally false to say that we can't apply our criteria and opinion, they do ask our comments and suggestions. The complains about the exam are just nonsensical is like "Hmmm...they are requiring me to have skills, it's so unfair." "Read the guides, how boring" Of course you have to study is not a "privilege" to be chosen: It is an earning for working hard. It sounds that you gave up before making the effort. How can you even say is not worth the time invested? you barely studied one guide and failed the exam. So maybe it is not an adequate job for your personal needs, but that is hardly their fault. I can only say it is a wonderful job, I has supported me during my college years. At first I messed up every month but I improved with their training. I made pretty good money to start my business. Yes, the tasks can be tedious and you have to WORK, but it's great because of the flexible hours and reliable payment. So Thanks Lionbridge for this 6 years!

    • profile image

      Ben 6 months ago

      I've been an internet assessor for like two years now. The work isn't exciting, but it's steady and pays well for the effort required. The tests require studying but if you went to college or even a competitive they're really not crazy-hard.

    • paolaenergya profile image
      Author

      Paola Bassanese 6 months ago from London

      Thanks to all of you who commented. I am genuinely happy for you making a good living from this website and wish you all the best.

    • profile image

      Shanna 6 months ago

      I worked for Lionbridge for about 8 months (July 2015 - March 2016). The hiring process was extremely simple and quick. The training was self paced - it took me a few hours over a 2 day period. I don't recall there being 157 pages or an actual exam - the protocol may have changed between the time I started and you applied. I'm a teacher full time so the work was great during the summer when I was home. Once the school year started I was obviously working evenings during the week and weekends to complete my 20 hours. The pay was great for taking care of all of the extras that come along in life - especially with 2 children. Everything was going great until November when the work began to dry up - task shortages became all too common. There may have been more tasks available during the weekdays but of course with me teaching full time I wasn't able to log on until the evenings. Eventually I received an email from Lionbridge in early March stating that US markets for internet assessors were ending although someone whom I had referred to Lionbridge was hired at almost the same time as I was being fired. Just as quickly I was hired I was released. I had only received feedback regarding my performance in the very beginning once I had finished training so I don't know if I wasn't meeting their expectations or whatever. It served its purpose while it lasted - I guess I wasn't really too upset considering it was only a part time job to supplement my real income. I don't know that I could have enough faith in the way Lionbridge operates to ever depend on it as my primary source of employment.

    • profile image

      Amelia 4 months ago

      An opinion cannot be "non-valid". Its an OPINION.

    • profile image

      shawndavis4 4 months ago

      I've been a search evaluator with Lionbridge for more than two years now. It's definitely not a job for everyone. It takes motivation and discipline to work unsupervised from home. Lionbridge provides all training material and holds several webinars each month. Those who put the time into learning will definitely do well.

      I found the hardest part was studying the training material in order to pass the exams. The concepts are kind of strange at first and there is so much to absorb. The exams aren't hard to pass and it's open book. It took about a month from the time I applied until I was officially working as a search evaluator.

      Most crowd-sourcing jobs actually pay pennies per hour. But Lionbridge pays significantly better. Each month I am able to pay my bills and even help out my elderly parents with some of their's too. The job pays well for those who do the work.

      Anyone considering a crowd-source job should definitely apply to Lionbridge first. If you are chosen to proceed with the hiring process, take your time to study the training material. Once you pass the exams, attend all training webinars and study the training material as it is updated. Do all this and you will do well.

    • profile image

      David Woods 4 months ago

      I worked for LeapForce, another company that does search engine testing, as a part-time work-from-home evaluator. I presume that employment pros and cons between the two companies is similar. Here are the things about working for LeapForce that really irked me:

      • Long pay cycle: it would up to 60 days from the day you worked until the day you finally saw a paycheck.

      • Constant nagging about my speed: I took my job seriously and tried as hard as I could to be accurate yet work quickly. But no matter how hard I worked, every time I completed a session, I would get a nasty-gram telling me that my productivity rate was not acceptable. And added to that:

      • Many of the required tasks, such as peer collaboration, invoicing, personal development, and other details, had to be done OFF THE CLOCK, and some of these tasks were quite time-consuming.

      • Available work was unsteady and unpredictable: Many times, I would block off a few hours, but found there was no available work. I emailed the support line asking if there was any way to predict work availability, but I did not get a reply. And finally:

      • Other than technical questions about the search evaluation process, they would never reply to my messages and general questions.

    • paolaenergya profile image
      Author

      Paola Bassanese 4 months ago from London

      Hi everybody, apologies for taking so long to check your comments - some interesting insights! I can see that some of you really love the company and some had a less satisfactory experience. I guess that workload may vary according to each country, so for example in the UK you may have less projects and therefore less opportunities to earn compared to the US. When I wrote this article I simply wanted to share my experience with you and decided that this type of project work is not for me but I am delighted that some of you are making a good living out of it.

      All the best,

      Paola

    • profile image

      Andie 3 months ago

      Well, I got to this page looking for some information about the internet assessor position to see whether to apply or not since I have been informed Lionbridge is hiring in my country right now. I just submitted my application, since I dont consider 20 hours a week a non flexible job. Anyway, I just havent heard about the payment and I guess I will not be informed until they decide if I got the job! Thanx for the reviews :)

    • profile image

      Amna 3 months ago

      I am looking to work for this company but now confused after reading comments. Not sure

    • paolaenergya profile image
      Author

      Paola Bassanese 3 months ago from London

      Hi, thank you for your comments. Please make sure you read information about Lionbridge from several sources as my article is an opinion piece about my frustrating experience. I appreciate that thousands of people have had positive experiences with the company and I am genuinely happy for them.

      Have a look at online reviews from several websites - some reviews may have been sponsored while others will be genuine reviews.

      The best thing I can suggest is to try working for different companies and see which one you like best, but of course this will be time-consuming. But hey, then you can write a Hub about it like I did!

      Best of luck and, as we are approaching Christmas, Merry Christmas everybody! Thank you for stopping by.

    • profile image

      rasaleh 2 months ago

      Any question bank for Test (online)

    • profile image

      Julia 8 weeks ago

      I was set up for the exam when I received this yesterday:

      Unfortunately we were unable to enter you into our Online Exam.

      According to our checks it appears that you have the same IP Address as another

      person in our system.

      Can you please explain why this has occurred?

      Thank you.

      Kind Regards,

      Your Lionbridge Recruiting Team

      I replied:

      To whom it may concern,

      I am not sure why this has occurred my only explanation is that I was trying to study the exam material via my smartphone you have on file. I was having my husband bring me my laptop in a few hours so I can obtain the materials and study. I really hope that this could be reconsidered. I am the only person that touches my phone and my laptop.

      Thank you so much for the consideration,

      Sincerely,

      I have not heard back from them and it is so unfortunate!

    • profile image

      Melissa DelBeato 2 weeks ago

      I applied for this company and the people that say your "opinion" is wrong are also entitled to their opinion. I, however, must disagree with them. I, too, thought the application process was much too tedious. I also grade SAT essays and had to do training and testing for the company I do that with but I was paid for training and at a much better rate than Lion Bridge was willing to pay. I made it all the way to round 3 of the testing and then they sent me my rejection e-mail. I am a bit astonished that they say you don't really need to have any particular skill yet they make you take these tests that are quite hard. Yes, the study materials are 147 pages long. That was another deterrent but I did give it my all. I wish I would have passed because it would have been a nice extra income, however, I also believe that I would have been bored to tears. Opinions cannot be wrong or nonsensical, they are opinions and even though the author hasn't actually worked for them, she was mainly commenting on the application process.

    • profile image

      Natasha 8 days ago

      I have just started working for Lionbridge as a rater. I find the work extremely time consuming. I am not able to fulfill even to 10 hours per week requirement, since each for which the estimated time provided is 10 minutes actually takes somewhere around 30 mins to research etc. I tried to speed up my work however that affected the quality and my account was put under review.

      And very often there are no tasks as well. Also I have not yet received any payment for the past month. I am hoping that it gets better for me as I need this work.

    • paolaenergya profile image
      Author

      Paola Bassanese 8 days ago from London

      Hi, thank you for your comments Natasha and Melissa. Yes, I admit I ended up not working for Lionbridge but I also believe that self-awareness is very useful in life, therefore if you that you won't be enjoying a specific type of job, why endure the suffering?

      I agree, the selection process is too lengthy and not enough explanation is given for rejections and for quality control. If you have to study a book before applying for a job, you might as well join the civil service or other well-paid role.

      I can also understand that Lionbridge wants to screen out low quality employees/collaborators, therefore if you want to work for them you have to jump through some hoops. While it makes business sense, for a freelancer the return on investment is laughable and you make more money doing a cleaning job.

      In conclusion: thank you for reading the article and for commenting, the conversations have been very interesting here and I appreciate it.

      Paola

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