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7 Tips on How to Select the Right Translation Agency

7 Tips on How to Select the Right Translation Agency
on November, 10 2016

If you've previously hired a translation agency to do work for you, then you will know how hard it is to select a professional agency that does excellent work and meets your requirements. And yet the task is made easier when you know what to look for.

It's important for you to choose the right agency when the points you are conveying in a business communication piece need to be expressed accurately. The reputation of your company greatly depends on the quality of your translated written materials, such as your brochures, newsletters, presentations and company website.

Realizing this, here is a list of pointers on picking the right translation agency to assist you with your communication materials:

1. Know What You Need

When it comes to promotional written materials, you will need the translation agency to accurately convey the benefits of the product and a call to action. Likewise, the translation agency would need to know how to be technically precise when it comes to translating the information for an operational manual. Read translation samples when shopping for an agency and find out if they are capable of accurately expressing the essence of your message.

2. Know the Agency Better

Inquire after the translation methods of the agency you are evaluating, are they a 'traditional' agency that solely relies on the manual translations of human linguists? Or do they use computerized software to assist in the process? Computer-assisted translation (CAT) techniques depend on software translation memory and a terminology/glossary management system to help do the work.

Choosing human-powered translations will ensure a greater accuracy and fluency of the translation work. Every multilingual translator is an expert in one or more language pairs, and additionally should have a strong command of difficult business, legal or medical terminologies.

3. Quality Work

The quality of the translation work an agency delivers will vary based on their interpretation of what amounts to 'quality work'. What quality control measures do they implement, for example? Do they have editors revising the work of their translators? Do they convey the tone of the original text in the translation in a way that future readers can appreciate? Day Translations triple checks every translation we deliver and has editors working around the clock to guarantee quality.

4.  Specialized Fields

Expect your chosen translation service to have vertical expertise across a wide range of industries. An approach that is one-size-fits-all would not serve your communication goals and purposes. Not all providers can expertly translate complex legal or medical documents or even IT and financial content. Find an agency that works with translators that have an in-depth knowledge of the topics at hand so that your communication piece resonates with the target audience.

5. Speed

Inquire after turnaround times and whether the agency can carry out orders outside standard working hours. When an agency works with translators who live in other time zones, they consistently deliver on time and honor your work schedule. Being able to draw on an international pool of translators is a sign of a solid translation company. For example, Day Translations can tap into a pool of over 20,000 translators from around the globe.

6. Confidentiality

Ask about the procedures a translation agency takes to ensure the confidentiality of your documents, such as where they store your documents. Does the agency have signed confidentiality agreements with their network of editors and translators? Does the provider sign nondisclosure agreements for special projects? Are they HIPAA compliant? Are they insured? These are worthy questions to ask.

7. Customer Service

Pay attention to the questions the translation provider asks you when you ask for a quote and try to find out how consistent they would be in serving you. For example, for the sake of preserving tone and a consistent voice in your written materials, can they assign the same translator(s) to all your projects? What is their process for giving a translated communication piece a second edit?

There are a lot of translation companies out there online, so it can be hard to choose the right one first time. But if you make sure you follow these seven tips; you should be confident in selecting the right one.

Denise Recalde

Denise Recalde is a Senior Content Writer at Day Translations. A seasoned writer and editor with eleven years of experience under her belt, she is a bonafide wordsmith who loves playing with the written word creatively and always takes care to lend a certain hue of snap and color to her drafts. Always one to rise up to challenges, she has traveled to 14 countries and has worked on a smorgasbord of writing projects that spanned several industries, from finance to health to beauty and fashion.

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