Many industries use translators on almost a daily basis. With the growth of their business, a company needs a reliable professional who will be able to support them with high-quality and on-time translations.
There is a great variety of material that needs to be translated within a company – from contracts and press releases to company trainings. It is a good idea to work with the same translator or translating agency for all your projects so you will get consistency in the translated materials.
Quite often, though, people are wondering how to find the right translator for the job they need to be done. Here are a few tips that can facilitate the process.
Decide on Project Parameters in Advance
No matter if you have a single document for translation or a whole bunch of marketing materials for your next company marketing campaign, it is a good idea to decide what you want in advance. Determine a budget and keep in mind that in translation you literally get what you pay for. High-quality translation usually costs more but is worth the investment as the final result is what you really need.
Think about how many languages you need the documents translated in and whether you want it done simultaneously or step by step. This will help you decide on working with individual freelance translators or with a translation agency. Generally, when translating one document in many languages, it is better to work with a single provider as this guarantees consistency of the project and is usually faster and cheaper. You get to communicate with one translation manager in charge of your project and not with several individual translators.
You also need to determine how flexible you are. Are you ready to negotiate the price or the term for the translation? Once you have decided on what you want and need, you are ready to approach the translator with your demands and get what you are looking for.
Look for Qualifications and Experience
When you start looking for a translator, it is necessary to check their qualifications and experience in the field. You can use reviews and testimonials, check social media about comments on the work of the translator or the agency you are considering. Recommendations from friends and relatives can also be useful.
Qualified translators will be able to show you certain certification as proof of their abilities and work experience. This can be a university diploma or a certificate issued by ANA or any other similar association abroad (in case you are looking for certain foreign language). Note that, many translators are not certified by ANA simply because there is no exam for their language combination.
As a rule, translators work from a foreign language into their mother tongue. If you need a translation in German, for example, you need a German native who speaks English and translates from English into German. There are professionals, who also translate into the foreign language but this is not that common. Generally, if you have an option, it’s better to use someone whose native language is the target language you need.
Consider an Additional Specialization
Many translation agencies serve a variety of industries and can provide translation in a great number of fields. They have specialized translators who work with legal documentation or with pharmaceutical texts. It is important to look for such specialization in case you have a specific text.
If you decide to use a freelancer, make sure that they have expertise and experience in your industry. Many translators have an additional qualification in law, medicine or other field along with their translation diploma.
In-depth knowledge of the topic will guarantee a high-quality translation that will be welcomed by your target audience.
Think about Speed
Quite often the speed of the translation process is crucial for the overall project. Many companies and individuals work on a tight schedule and need a translation to be done as soon as possible. You can ask for an urgent translation service if the company/translator offers one. Make sure that the speed of the service won’t compromise its quality.
Ask for Proofreading
When looking for translation services, make sure if they include proofreading of the text once the translation is done. This is a separate service that guarantees the high quality of the translation and eliminate all kinds of mistakes made in the translation process.
Translation agencies usually include the service in their final price but it won’t hurt to double check if it is covered or not. Freelance translators do not include proofreading in most of the cases. You need to look for another professional and pay additionally for the service. Still, it is advisable to have your translation proofread so you can rest assured that the text is in the best form before it reaches the target audience it was intended for.
BONUS TIP: It is good to provide your translator with all the reference materials that you have on the project in order to facilitate their work and guarantee integrity of the project. If you have a list of names or specific jargon that will be of great help. Also, make sure to tell the translator any specific requirements you might have such as the way your company name is written in order to avoid returning the text for correction afterwards.
Once you have selected the translator or agency to work with, it is necessary to keep all communication channels open. Be ready to answer any questions you might get and expect the same from the professional you are working with. Note that the physical location of your translator is not such a significant factor as long as you are able to communicate efficiently and understand each other. In case they are in your vicinity, though, it is a good idea to meet in person and discuss all the details prior to awarding them the project.