So you need to translate something and you’re considering your options. Perhaps you took some language classes in school, or maybe you’ve got an old friend who speaks the requisite foreign tongue. Think that’s a viable option? Wrong! What you need is the kind of service that only a professional translation can provide. Consider the following five points that help illustrate this idea, and be sure to make the right choice – one that will keep your professional reputation and/or brand image strong.
1. Dedicated Project Management
As Adam Smith taught us centuries ago, division of labor is a boon to productivity and efficiency, which is why translation companies add PMs into the labor mix so that the linguists can focus their energies on the specifics of the text at hand, while things like workflow, partial deliveries, deadlines, etc., can all be done without slowing down the actual task of translation itself.
2. Trained Linguists
Speaking of the linguists, they really are the most valuable asset of any translation company. The few language classes you may have taken in school or the supposedly native speaker you may be friends with are simply no match for the arsenal of knowledge and know-how that true language pros possess. It’s not just about being fluent in two or more languages; there are practices and standards to follow, subject matters with specialized vocabulary to become acquainted with, and software to master, which brings us to…
3. Quality and Usability
Through my years of experience as a linguist, I’ve come to learn that figuring out the right translation of a given word or phrase can be hard enough, and the truth is that oftentimes there is more than one correct option. The lesson to be gleaned from this is that consistency is really at the core of quality. Professional translation entails the use of computer-assisted software, also known as CAT tools, which help ensure consistency in terminology and provide other useful features such as a translation memory and quality assurance controls, among others.
4. Quick Turnaround
Your time is valuable, so don’t go wasting it with subpar service providers. Hiring a reputable company will give you both peace of mind and a considerably faster turnaround, which means you’ll meet your deadlines. For big translation projects, there’s really only one way to proceed, and that’s by taking advantage of the large network of vetted language service providers that you simply won’t find on your own.
5. Clear Pricing
You don’t want surprises when confronting a translation project – regardless of its size. You deserve clarity in terms of how much you can expect to fork over to get the final product you need, and that’s exactly what a professional translation company gives you. So whether it’s a simple one-page document or a massive, highly technical file, you can quickly get an accurate quote and make your budgeting decisions accordingly.