What Are The Top Myths Concerning Translation Quality?

Mythical monster in a lake at sunset

There’s no room for mystery when you are searching for quality translations services. Unfortunately, the translation field is littered with misinformation and misconceptions, and the myths that surround this industry could be losing you money. Continue reading as we attempt to debunk several myths concerning translation quality.

Bilingual Employees Can’t Offer Valuable Feedback

This myth is a bit contentious; however, we believe that bilingual employees can offer valuable feedback. Bilingual employees have a deep knowledge of their company and industry, so they may have pertinent suggestions regarding word choice, and terminology. Keep this in mind: though a bilingual employee will be able to read the translated text, his or her feedback might not always be relevant or helpful to the goals of the project. If a bilingual employee is given focused guidance on what to look for, they may be able to provide some help, but it is generally far more useful to reach out to a professional translator if you want to ensure a quality translation.

Quality Translations Are Dependent On Client/Vendor Consensus

Our job is to provide accurate translations, and we aim to please every client, regardless of industry; however, there are some instances where we must protect clients as they make observations that are not linguistically sound. In situations like this, we often aim to tell the client why we think one word or phrase works better. By the same merit, there are some situations where a client must assist us with correct terminology usage. Basically, it is important that the client and translation vendor work together to assure quality. While the translators put a lot of effort into ensuring quality translations, the client must be pleased with the results as well.

Shorter Translation Projects Are Easier

This myth is forgivable, as it makes intuitive sense: less words makes it easier right? Well, shorter translation projects are often subjected to greater scrutiny, since every word must be spot-on. Unfortunately, higher expectations and greater scrutiny often complicate the process, as everyone involved works to make sure the translation is exact. It’s important to note that shorter projects are still subjected to the same project management process that we use for larger projects. While the actual time necessary for translation may end up being a little less than usual, the translation still needs careful attention, and the process still involves the same amount of steps. Yes, that means even if you have a short translation project, it will still pass through the translator, editor, and a round of internal review.

Larger Companies Provide Better Results

There are some people who operate under the assumption that bigger is better. While this may be true in some cases, it’s not necessarily correct to assume that buying translations from a large agency will yield better results than buying from a small firm. If you need translation for just one language or in a specialized industry, you might be better off working with a small agency or a professional freelance translator. In the past, we’ve noticed that big agencies tend to offer less personal attention as you often times do not have a single point of contact. Simply put, big agencies don’t always put the necessary time in to get to know your company, which can impact the quality and consistency of your translations in the long term. It’s unfortunate, but there are some larger companies who don’t work with a specialized team of linguists for specific clients. These large agencies will push out your work to every translator in their database, offering it to the cheapest translator who is first to respond. Obviously, this has a large impact on quality!

Translations Can Be Completed Overnight

We always strive to provide accurate translations in a timely manner; however, this myth was born from the belief that translation is a simple task that can be accomplished in a manner of minutes. A professional translation company will have the ability to educate the client and inform them that translators need sufficient time in order to produce a quality product. Translation companies face a myriad of obstacles as they attempt to assess incoming projects. For example, they need to reach out to a group of linguists in order to gauge their availability. There are instances where it is easier to get projects done quickly; however, it often takes longer than most would assume.

Businesses Don’t Need To Participate In The Translation Process

Of course, your translation company will do a large portion of the work for you, but you can expect better results if you take the time to educate your vendor on your key objectives and brand voice. Basically, you need to provide your translation team with the same types of material you use to brief other creative partners- it will go a long way towards enhancing the quality of your translation. Think of translation as more of a partnership than an outsourced relationship.

iTi | Connecticut Translation Company

iTi’s dedicated and experienced team offers a wide range of multilingual solutions for domestic and global corporations in a variety of industries. With our expansive resources, you can take advantage of communication services on a global scale, creating, managing, and distributing your content in any format. You are welcome to contact us to request a quote for your language translation project


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