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Three Considerations before Starting Translation

Mar 15, 2022

When presenting your company information to a global audience, whether to your employees, customers, or regulators, you want to make sure that you have the best translation services provider for your needs. Consider these few things as you prepare for translation and/or localization while determining your needs and beginning your search for a translation services provider.

1. Not just anyone who speaks multiple languages can translate documents

Someone who speaks numerous languages may seem like a reliable source for translation, but just because someone may speak your source and target languages does not automatically make them capable of translating your essential company communications. Translation and localization require your linguist to know both languages perfectly.

When translating and localizing documents, presenting information in an easy-to-read and usable fashion in every target language is a daunting responsibility that will require you to rely on a translation services provider. Your partnership with one is critical in communicating to your global audience. An experienced translation services partner should have a wide selection of in-country linguists.

Your translation services provider or language services partner (LSP) should be able to supply you with the professional history and experience of the linguists they plan to assign to your project. If possible, you can request linguists who possess verifiable experience providing translation and localization services for your use case. It’s even better if you can confirm that they also have experience working in your specific field (e.g., medical devices, pharmaceuticals, legal, etc.)

Consider this; you would not hire a native English speaker to prepare medical documents if that person did not understand the complexities of the medical profession. In the same way, to avoid embarrassing and potentially hazardous errors, you need to make sure that a translator has the language expertise as well as a thorough understanding of your industry’s terminology. The LSP you chose must offer linguists in the target language, experts in the related subject matter, and have years of high-level professional experience in the related industry and terminology and accreditation by leading translator associations. So not just anyone, machine or online translator, should handle your translations or localization projects.

2. Translation and localization are not the same things

This is one of the most common misconceptions, but translation and localization are not the same. Translation takes a source language almost word-for-word converts to a target language. In contrast, localization involves applying stylistic requirements, adapting content for the region, and adapting language for cultural appropriateness. Given the similarities in the terms, they are often used interchangeably, but that is a mistake as there are fundamental ways in which translation and localization differ.

You can think of translation more like a mirror image of the material that has been written, reviewed, and translated. For a translation to be the most accurate, it will require changing word order and sentence structure and choosing the most appropriate word in the target language when there is more than one option. Localization, however, requires taking translation a step further. Content won’t only be translated from source to target languages; it will also be adapted to fit the foreign culture, including graphics, symbols, dates or times, currency, idioms and references. Localization requires a trained eye toward cultural sensitivities, which makes the best translators who have a firm grasp of linguistic nuance in the target language(s).

3.  Reviewing the final product is always necessary

Having accurate translation and localization is essential to standing out in a global market, protects your brand, increases your trustworthiness, and helps you win customers. To ensure you’re producing high-quality translations, it’s essential to have a feedback mechanism with your LSP so you follow a consistent, repeatable quality process. These quality processes should have measures in place that include the review.

It is important to remember even if the translator is from the industry; they might not know the specific jargon of your company and/or product. In this circumstance, In-country reviewers (ICRs) can help with this quality process. ICRs are usually employees or distributors of your products who speak the target language, reside within the target country, and understand your business needs. ICRs should confirm the industry-specific terminology, known as a glossary, within translated documents and review the final product.

Suppose you don’t have internal staffers capable of filling the ICR role. In that case, you can consult with a distributor or reselling partner who has the appropriate language skills and knowledge of your business. In other cases, your may rely on your LSP, which may provide a third-party reviewer. Reviewing technical or legal content in context may require a cursory review of the completed language translation. As a translation company, we strive to ensure the assessment of the technical translation, legal translation, or patent translation that our client receives includes layers of review. These layers of review include but are not limited to a study of the language-specific terminology to ensure consistency, dialect, and spelling.

Conclusion

High-quality translations are essential for a business entering the global market. Still, it can be tempting to use an online marketplace of translators or an online translation company where you don’t have a dedicated resource to interact with. Avoid cutting corners because you may not get the high-quality work a professional LSP can provide.

A professional LSP knows how to correctly manage the translation and localization process to bring you the best results possible. Whether your needs include a document, legal, technical translation, or localization Morningside can assist you and provide you with top-quality language solutions. We ensure that you will look to Morningside for our expertise when you next need a translation service or translation company.

About Morningside

Quality is at the heart of what we do as an LSP and is our primary focus. We know speaking a language is one thing, but writing is another. Our global network of 8,000+ vetted translators includes subject matter experts (SMEs) in various technical fields and practice areas. If applicable, all of them must live in the country, pass initial screenings and reference checks, pass targeted linguistic and subject matter testing, and complete our mentoring period that includes comprehensive training and reviews. Our process ensures that your message is just as compelling as your target language(s) in your source language.

We are all about transparency, thought leadership and making the utmost effort to help our customers understand the process of getting global communications translated and localized to increase retention and comprehension.

Morningside equips the world’s leading organizations with accurate, high-quality, professional translation services. We specialize in highly regulated industries, including legal, life sciences, corporate compliance and IP.

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