Today it’s simpler than it ever was, to start and run a global company – but carrying it on successfully requires you to produce top-notch communications. Without retaining the services of a translation company, you’ll find yourself lagging behind Singapore others, in today’s expanding worldwide market. That means you must come up with the resources to be able to keep the public informed about your services or goods, but most vitally of all, you get it done in a way that makes your customers really want to dig deep in their pockets. If you invest now, you’re a hundred times more likely to reap rewards from it in future!
If you conduct a brief search on the web or through Yellow Pages, you’ll see that there are literally thousands of translation service agencies out there to choose from. If you decide to employ an agency for your translation services, how do you find the best one?
First and foremost, check the quality of your translation service company. The cheapest may not provide you with what you want, and a poorly translated document can make you seem unprofessional, or even make you into a laughing stock. Your customers will wonder why you didn’t bother finding a better translation for them, and will assume you don’t care much about them as a market. In a worst case scenario, it could prove to be dangerous, or land you in legal trouble. You probably get what you pay for, and if you pay peanuts, you may get monkeys!
The translation service agency you employ should provide a professional translator, preferably with a relevant education in formal translation. However, experience is actually a great deal more important than formal education, and the most competent translators may never have taken a degree in translation.
Usually, the translator should only interpret, or translate to his or her mother tongue. It’s also an excellent idea to employ one that lives in a country that speaks the target language. At the very least, they should have close ties to that country, and visit it frequently – because language evolves rapidly, and quickly becomes stale and out-of-date if it’s not practiced and heard regularly.
The translation service company professional should also have specialist knowledge of your particular area of business. It would be foolhardy to employ the services of a non-medical specialist to translate materials relating to pharmaceuticals, or medical equipment, for example, or other areas of health and wellbeing. Similarly, if you need legal translation services, the translator should be certified by a court.
Look for an agency that uses a second professional to proofread the work of the first. A top translation service agency will also have tight quality management and consistently produce high-quality translations. Look for client testimonials on the translation service agency’s website, or ask for the contact information of previous clients. If you’re finding your translation service agency through an Internet business networking service, make sure you spend some time looking at reviews and scoring from past clients.
Many a contemporary company is now using what’s known as a translation memory. It’s a database used by so-called CAT (Computer Aided Translation) software, which competently recycles translations which were completed previously. A good translation service company will still have all the text proofread to make sure it’s correct, comprehensible and compelling for your target audience. The advantage to you is that you will owe the translation service company a reduced fee, through not having to pay for the same service twice. If you’re simply updating your current material, or you have multiple similar texts undergoing translation, it could possibly save you thousands of dollars.
Initially choose a number of translation service agencies, then get quotes from each, and initiate some discussion with them. Based on the way they answer your questions, and the quality of customer service they provide, you can then make your final decision.
Armando Riquier is a freelance writer and expert translator collaborating with Tectrad whose specialized activities comprise professional translation services [http://www.101businesstranslation.com/translation-services.htm] from English to French, Spanish, German, Italian and all other major European languages, as well as website localizations and corporate documents handling.