It goes without saying that any company when growing in size needs to put more emphasis in organizing its Human Resources functions. It may even include developing its own department as part of their road map. This is no different for a language provider. The question is what the role of HR specifically entails when it comes to the inner workings of translation and localization companies.
According to Renato Beninatto and Tucker Johnson in their book “The General Theory of the Translation Company”, there are three core functions at every translation company that add value to their services: Vendor Management, Project Management and Sales. However, it would be foolish to believe these are the only important operational activities happening within the company. There are also several supporting activities playing roles that facilitate the former core functions, providing solutions, infrastructure, vision, strategy, efficiency, consistency, global manpower, and resources for them in order to allow the company to thrive and grow.
These supporting activities include Human Resources, Management, Financing, Structure and culture development, Technology and Quality Assurance. They are all designed to build a bridge between external market forces and core functions.
Human Resources employees in language services companies face the same challenges as every other industry. On top of that, the department faces the added complexity of a multi-cultural environment. It is much more needed in companies with a big in-house structure than in companies with smaller ones; either way, it is a role that must be taken seriously, so the right decisions can be made regarding their employees.
Well planned Human Resources practices assure that the people involved in core functions and supporting activities can work in the best possible conditions and scenarios. This is in order for teams to remain strong and for employees to maintain a high level of motivation and productivity.
It is always important to remember that people are likely to buy when they feel comfortable and bond with people; so, if you have a loyal happy team, then you will most probably have loyal happy clients.