5 Most frequently asked questions about translation services

5 Most frequently asked questions about translation services

If you’re new to translation services, you may have a few questions. In this blog post we will attempt to answer the most common ones we get asked. However, if you’ve got a more interesting, more complicated, or more insightful question you need an answer for: please get in touch. Call +44 (0) 1483 577 750 or email help@geolanguages.co.uk

#1: What exactly do you do?

Many prospective customers are not entirely sure what translation services actually entail. Are we interpreters, do we translate subtitles, or do we just translate documents? The answer is all of these and more…

Often you will see the word ‘localization’ used in conjunction with translations. This is, in some ways, a more accurate term for what we do across a whole range of disciplines. We take your content – be it a website, marketing material, a video, technical documents, a database etc. – and localize it for your target audience. Generally, this involves translating the written elements (scripts, subtitles, text content etc.) into your target language, but it’s a bit more in-depth than that.

Localization also looks at other factors, such as whether a literal translation of text works for your chosen market. It explores the most appropriate technical terminology and identifies the most suitable translations. It also ensures that content is culturally appropriate, including images and audio elements.

Broadly speaking, our translation services include the following: transcreation and copywriting, subtitles and voiceovers, multilingual desktop publishing, interpreting, transcription, technical and specialist translations and accessibility services (including sign language & Braille). If you want to explore these in more detail, click here.

#2: How do I know that your translations are accurate?

Unless you have native speaking proofreaders or reviewers within your company, how will you know whether your translations are any good? It can be a problem, especially if you rely on free services like Google Translate.

The translation industry is not a regulated profession, so the onus is on you and us to check and demonstrate that we have robust Quality Assurance (QA) procedures in place.

The first step is to look for industry accreditations. Look for ISO 9001 (quality management systems) and the all-important ISO 17100 – the quality standard for the translation industry.

Next, speak to prospective translation agencies about their QA procedures. Find out how they vet and select linguists, how they manage translation projects, and what translation technology is used to improve accuracy – and how this is monitored and managed. As well as project managers and native-speaking linguists, your project may also involve reviewers and proofreaders, so get the lowdown on them too.

For more about Quality Assurance please contact us. It’s not the most exciting of subjects but one that is absolutely vital to the success of your translation projects.

#3: How much do translations cost?

Unfortunately, it’s not a straightforward answer. We don’t just make costs up, they tend to be a factor of:

  • The language pair involved
  • The difficulty of the text
  • The deadline
  • The amount we are able to discount for repetitions or exact matches
  • Whether or not translation memory or machine translation is involved
  • Whether proofreading or any other service is required
  • Whether it is a minimum charge

All these complex variables are normally put into our translation supercomputer, analysed by an infinite number of multilingual elves and then we ping out a quote in a very short time.  So it’s best to talk to us or email  us for a quote.

#4: How quickly can you turn around translations?

The main thing is not to worry about the turnaround time. Just let us know when you need it and we’ll take care of the rest. We’ve handled projects of millions of words and returned them in a matter of weeks, including design and voice-over into 20 different languages.

There are ways we can speed up translations and ways you can help us turn around projects more quickly – see our post “5 Tips To Speed Up The Translation Process” to find out how.

#5: What do you need to get going?

If you’re ready to get started, we’ll need a brief from you.

The easiest way to do this is pick up the phone and have a chat with our team. We can then take down a detailed brief, ask relevant questions and make sure everyone’s on the same page. We’ll need to know what your project is, the industry it’s for, the languages you need it translated into, the target market, your timings etc.

We’ll also need to discuss the source text or content; the type of files involved, whether the text is ‘translation-ready’, and how you want the translation to be delivered. We aim to work with your preferred formats and in-house processes, so the more detail the better.

You can start this process straightaway by clicking on our Quick Quote link, or by calling us on +44 (0)1483 577 750.

Or if you have any more questions either comment below, phone or email
help@geolanguages.co.uk.

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