How to use translation assisting programs? Part I
In this article we will analyze the tools most commonly used by translators and we will try to determine why some programs are more popular than others.
Studies on the use of translation tools have been conducted among professional translators. The majority of respondents have been working in the industry for at least five years, and more than thirty percent of them have been active for over ten years. The largest group of respondents is in the age range from 25 to 35 years (35%). The study covered more than 3000 full-time professional translators from around the world.
They answered the question of whether they used any tools assisting the translation process, and if so, which ones and why?
What translation software do you use most frequently?
The result is not surprising, because the most popular tool is Trados. Wordfast was ranked second, followed by memoQ.
The list of three leading programs was obtained by asking translators to name their favorite tool (if the translators only used one of them) and which tool they would recommend to a person intending to use it at work. The translators were also asked about the least-liked program. Some 33% percent of all respondents use only one tool.
As many as 93% of all users of translation tools agreed, that these programs improved their productivity at work (3% claimed they didn't see any difference, and 4% were undecided). Those who said that translation tools have improved their work performance, were asked to assess the increase in efficiency, basing their statement on the average duration of a project within their area of expertise.
Did your productivity increase and in what way?
It is difficult to clearly define this factor, however, the results show a certain general increase, with the largest number of answers indicating an increase in productivity oscillating within the range of 20 to 30 percent (this value is consistent with the results of a previous report of the translation industry).
The users of translation tools generally agreed, that their use provides advantages in terms of maintaining the consistency and quality of the prepared texts, and in the management of terminology and the commissioned projects. The majority of respondents also admitted, that the size and organization of the translation memory (TM) is the major reason why they use their translation programs.