What are the features of a professional translation agency?
Translation agencies: aren’t they all the same?
As an end customer, you are most likely to care about the general outcome of the cooperation – a delivered translation, that is. People that stand behind this process are simply supposed to be the best at whatever they do, be it translating, managing projects or proofreading. How do we even choose the best translation agency to carry out our task? Numerous entrepreneurs claim that they are quality-driven and their selection is based on verified sample translations and was preceded by a background check. The reality, however, shows something entirely different: that as in many other aspects of life, the choice of language services provider is mainly influenced by the price. After all, they justify their choice that there is little that could go wrong – all that their business partner is supposed to do is convey the same message via the means of another language. There are no two businesses that are the same; no two people with the same approach to clients. Why some translation agencies stay on the market for years while the other ones are forced to close down nearly immediately after the launch?
Here’s what professional translation agencies are concerned about the most: quality and safety
It could be easily said that people who stand behind a successful translation agency are quality obsessed. This issue mainly revolves around text quality, and the easiest way to find out whether our chosen agency is able to meet client’s expectations is to ask about the review process: every entity is able to establish a working relationship with one person (a translator, that is). Handling two or three people working simultaneously on one project requires much more expertise and a certain position among competitors on the market – so just see whether the selected agency is able to provide comprehensive answers regarding proofreaders selected to contribute to the project. Do not be afraid to ask about their collaborating native speakers and the terms of their work.
Yet another aspect worth considering is the way that a given agency handles confidential content. Ask for a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) and carefully review all of the included clauses; see what precautions does the agency take in order to ensure highest quality of protection and prevent data leaks. Ensure that your translation services provider does not resort to cloud-based solutions which can potentially expose confidential information to third parties. Professional agency should not be afraid to present all of the security measures that they resort to, maintaining highest level of transparency.
Efficient use of modern technologies and CAT tools in translation
Professional translation agencies are constantly striving for improvement and implementing changes that allow to optimise their work process. Nowadays majority of these companies rely on these comprehensive solutions fostering efficient usage of translation memories and term bases; what’s there for their business partner? Well, the more advanced technologically a given agency is, the more likely you are to receive attractive financial benefits. These resources serve as a still underrated, yet tremendously efficient help in retaining consistency of lexicon and usage of preferred translations provided by the client. If a client does not object to using cloud-based solutions, these can also significantly facilitate the access of multiple specialists to one project, ensuring therefore a valuable insight of proofreaders, editors and independent consultants. Such things can be easily verified at the sample translation stage.
Why should high quality of translation and responsive customer service go hand in hand?
Even the best quality of provided services cannot make up for poor customer service – and that’s a well known fact. Each project shall be coordinated by its designated manager, a person serving as an intermediary between the team completing the order and the client, ensuring proper flow of information and immediate exchange of opinions. It should always be a competent and experienced specialist, able to supervise a project involving multiple specialists and to cooperate their harmonious work.
Why is the ability to tell a bad translation agency from a professional one so crucial in business?
Ensuring our confidential documents, financial or trade data to complete strangers is always a risky game. Bearing in mind the fact that the impact of unforeseen delays might equal severe financial or legal consequences, one should always take utmost caution when selecting a translation agency. Far more things are actually dependant on this seemingly easy choice – but there is a number of indicators that can make this process way easier. Always look out for rather disturbing resistance to share information on non-disclosure agreements, software used for translation, providing data on education and experience of linguists involved in project completion. Ask about modern technologies and entrust your translation to a success-driven agency that stays two steps ahead of the competition, using a variety of state-of-the-art solutions. Make sure that your project is managed by one designated person who supervises the project at every stage of its completion, ensuring effortless communication between you – the client – and the specialists. After all, it is your business and the successful completion of you further endeavours that they are responsible for.