Language Translation Guide

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A buyers guide for selecting a good translation company.

Text of Language Translation Guide


2. Intro

  • The language translation process involves rewriting source language material into another language.
  • Effective translation is so accurate that the translated documents appear to have been originally written in the second, or target, language.

Language Translation - A Buyer's Guide 3. Finding a Good Translator

  • The search for a good translator can be overwhelming if you are not familiar with the language service industry.
  • A good translation agency simplifies the process by providing experienced translators coupled with professional project management.

Language Translation - A Buyer's Guide 4. Finding a Good Translator

  • Using the Internet, anyone can key in translator and find plenty of translators. But, how can you assess their qualifications and the quality of their work?
  • There is no license required to become a translator, so anyone can work as one, with or without the necessary training, education and life experience.

Language Translation - A Buyer's Guide How do you know if youve found a good translator? 5. A Good Agency

  • A good translation agency eliminates this risk. It knows its translators, and has had their work tested by impartial language experts.
  • It also has access to a large choice of translators who work in different specialties such as legal, medical or business translation so it can find the perfect translator for your job.

Language Translation - A Buyer's Guide 6. A Good Agency

  • A good translation agency will also act as your Project Manager. Imagine having a project that requires a key document to be translated into three, four, or even more languages.
  • A project manager will find the required translators, editors and reviewers, then coordinate and manage the process and the schedule to make sure the work meets all the deadlines.

Language Translation - A Buyer's Guide 7. Language Translation - A Buyer's Guide Working with a good translation agency frees you from the pressure and responsibility inherent in managing projects, and ensures that you receive accurate translations, carried out by qualified translators. 8. 3 Steps to Accuracy

  • Your document is translated by a professional translator who is a native speaker of the target language.
  • The document is then reviewed by an editor who checks it for content, grammatical, and spelling accuracy.
  • Finally, the translation is proofread for formatting errors, and to make sure that it reads well.

Language Translation - A Buyer's Guide To ensure accurate translation results every time, your translation agency should follow a three-step process: 9. Bilingual Employees vs. Professional Translators

  • It is important to remember that just because someone speaks two languages does not mean that this person is able to translate between those two languages.
  • Professional translators are well-educated, and are excellent writers in the languages in which they work. So it is unreasonable to expect bilingual employees who have little or no writing or translation experience to carry out translation work.

Language Translation - A Buyer's Guide 10. Human vs. the Machine

  • A computer mainly translates word-for-word, rather than taking into consideration the context of the original text.For instance, a word in one language can have several different meanings.
  • Machine translation software cannot know which definition the source material writer had in mind. So, even though machine translation and software can be a useful tool to get an idea of what is being said,for accurate meaning to be conveyed, a professional, human translator is always necessary.

Language Translation - A Buyer's Guide 11. The Quotation Process

  • The language combination (the source and target language(s)
  • The length of the document (the number of words)
  • The format of the document (word doc, pdf, scan, etc..)
  • The format required for the final document
  • When you will need the translation completed

Language Translation - A Buyer's Guide When contacting the agency you will want to have the document available to send so that they can do an accurate word count on the document, note the complexity, and check to see if any special formatting is required. Things the agency will need to know: 12. Cost

  • How much should this all cost?
  • Translation rates vary. Most translation agencies base their estimate on a per word rate. A professional language service provider should include the following in their pricing:

Language Translation - A Buyer's Guide

  • Translation
  • Proof-reading / editing
  • Reviewing
  • Project management

13. What is Word Expansion?

  • Keep in mind that when translating into some languages such as Spanish, French, Italian, German, and Portuguese, the number of words will increase by approximately 20%.
          • For example:
          • The word clockwise inEnglish translates toen el sentido de las agujas del reloj in Spanish.
  • This is why the final word count will be different in the translation than in the original document.

Language Translation - A Buyer's Guide 14. Conclusion

  • Some key factors you will want to take into consideration when deciding on an agency:

Language Translation - A Buyer's Guide

  • How long have they been in business?
  • Do they publish an address?
  • Do they publish a list of clients?
  • What is the background of their management team?
  • What process do they use?
  • What quality control procedures have they established?

The whole process of translation can seem a bit confusing at first, but if you follow the advice in this guide, the process should go well. Your company will be able to communicate efficiently and effectively with foreign clients and customers. And in today's global economy, international contacts are increasingly necessary to remain competitive. 15. Language Translation - A Buyer's Guide Language Translation Inc ., is a San Diego-based company that has been serving the U.S. and countries abroad since 1989 with professional document translation, certified conference interpreting, and software / website localization services. Language Translation, Inc. 4379 30th Street, Suite 7 San Diego, CA 92104 Tel: 619.516.4037 Fax: 619.516.4089