What are translation services?
“Translation is not a matter of words only: it is a matter of making intelligible a whole culture.” Anthony Burgess
Translation services provide an effective solution to have the meaning of your message communicated clearly and accurately from a source language to a target language, conveying the original tone and intent, and having a culturally sensitive approach by considering cultural and regional differences. These services provided by Language Service Providers (LSPs) and linguists include but are not limited to translation, interpretation, localisation, multilingual DTP, brand name checking, telephone services and translation of sign languages.
What do Language Service Providers do?
Language Service Providers (LSPs) manage translation projects by following the steps below:
- Quoting – calculating costs based on the services that will be provided (e.g. translation, revision, and DTP)
- Selecting translators with relevant expertise (e.g. legal translators for the translation of business contracts)
- Managing the translation process – this includes using CAT (computer-aided translation) tools such as Memsource, MemoQ, and Trados in order to maintain consistency in high-volume and/or long-term projects, and communicating client’s instructions to the translators
- Managing the quality assurance process – editors and quality checkers ensure the delivery of high-quality translations
- Timely delivery of the translation projects to the client
Who needs/uses translation services?
Translation services are used by any individual, company or organisation that needs to have their message or information available in a different language.
Among the many industries who frequently require translation services are:
- Information and Technology – technical documents, user manuals, training manuals, software localisation, hardware, website localisation, user interfaces
- Business, Finance and Banking – periodic reports, business letters, financial statements, tender documents, proposals, insurance documents, newsletters
- Legal and Judiciary – agreements, contracts, terms and conditions, legal verdicts, legal communication, patents
- Medical and Life Sciences – medical reports, patents, patient records, informational brochures, prescriptions, clinical trials, back translation, informed consent forms, pharmacological reports
- Marketing – advertisement materials, leaflets, flyers, catalogues, websites, tweets, social media posts, presentations, newsletters, blogs
- Travel and Tourism – hospitality, hotel chains, listings, reports, menus, information bulletins, documentary films, catalogs
- Personal – IDs, passports, marriage certificates, transcripts, birth certificates
How much do translation services cost?
Most LSPs have specific rates for different language pairs which can be seen on their websites. Clients may ask for a quote, or ask for a tailor-made payment plan for high-volume, long-term projects. The cost is mostly calculated on per word basis, however some of the agencies prefer to offer minimum charge or fixed prices for specific documents (e.g. ID, passports, diplomas etc.). Other than per word calculation, it is also common to give a quote per hour, per 1000 characters (with space or without space) and per page.
Usually it is based on the subject matter, format, length, difficulty and time frame.
What is machine translation?
Machine Translation (MT) is an automated process which translates text or speech from a source language to a target language with results varying in quality. While MT can operate without any human intervention, pre-editing and post-editing by humans are usually required to produce a good result. With the help of MT, it is possible to translate millions or even billions of word in a day. Even if the quality of this texts is open to discussion, processing and translation of that much information could not be possible without this technology.
Currently there are three systems and three approaches in MT:
- generic MT
- customisable MT
- adaptive MT
- Rule-based MT (RbMT)
- Statistical systems (SMT)
- Neural MT (NMT)
*For further information you can visit: https://www.gala-global.org/what-machine-translation
What is EN-15038:2006?
EN-15038:2006 is one of the quality standards for Language Service Providers (LSPs) / Translation Service Providers (TSPs) which covers the fundamental translation process, i.e. translation service cycle, such as translation, revision, proofreading, QA and delivery. It creates a framework for the relationship between the buyer and the translation agency. This standard requires the translation process to be conducted in at least two phases with two different linguists to ensure quality.
Which file formats can be translated?
Literally you can get most of the digital document formats translated, including but not limited to:
- Microsoft Office files (Word, Excel, Powerpoint)
- Google Documents
- Adobe (InDesign, FrameMaker, PDF, Photoshop)
- XLIFF (1.2 and 2.0)
- HTML, XML,PHP, CSV, JSON, SRT,
- QuarkXpress (.tag, .xtg)
- WordPress and Drupal Contents
How long does it take to complete a translation?
Although it depends on many variables, such as language pair, subject matter, document format, length, linguist, translation service type, etc., it generally takes 24 hours to deliver a translation of 2000 – 2500 words for a linguist.
What does TEP mean in language industry and why it matters?
TEP is one of the most frequently used translation project types in the Language Industry. It stands for Translation, Editing and Proofreading. These are three important processes in a translation project, if you are aiming at a high quality. This type of a cycle is recommended for advanced and critical materials, e.g. user guides, medical or fiscal reports, marketing materials, market research, surveys, legal communication, technical manuals, etc. But of course, you can ask for a TEP service when you are hiring a translation agency no matter what your document is about, this way you can guarantee a better quality in your translated document.
What is Translation Memory (TM) and how can it help you?
Translation Memory (TM) is a CAT (computer-aided translation) tool feature that enables users to store their translations in bilingual (or multilingual) format with context and identification data (when, who, document name). Thanks to that feature of CAT tools, you can easily update your already translated documents without re-translating everything. You just need to translate new content, however the document should be translated in a CAT tool previously. If not, you need an alignment with the source and target files to create a TM. Apart from consistency and quality, this helps you to save time and money.
What are Term Bases (TB)?
Termbase or Term Base is a database where you can keep your multilingual terminologies and data entries usually related to a specific subject. You can either keep them in bilingual or multilingual. When combined with Translation Memories (this can be done in a CAT tool), they increase the efficiency in the translation process and reinforce the consistency and quality throughout the text.
Why do you need a brand name checking when you go global?
If you are planning to launch a new brand and intending to operate in a global marketplace, it is wise to ensure that your brand name translates well into other languages. There are plenty of examples where brand names in one language have been seriously embarrassing in another. You really don’t want a blot on your reputation – and all the expense and effort of rebranding and relaunching.
It is important to get your business card translated – why?
If you are interested in growing and developing your business in a particular country, then the first step is to translate your business card into their language. A business card, translated accurately into the language of the country you are trying to do business with, speaks volumes, without you having to say a word. It indicates that you respect the person you are getting to know enough to communicate with them in their own language.
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