How to use technology in translation to cut costs – not corners
The use of technology to improve efficiencies, increase productivity and improve quality is ‘business as usual’ across all business sectors these days.
The translations industry is certainly no exception, over the years the industry has adapted quickly to changes in technology. It is these changes which have enabled the industry to become adaptive and efficient machine that it is today. These efficiencies are not just for the translation product itself but for the translation process as a whole.
In this article we will explore the range of translation technologies which have become vital parts of our translation process and that provide our clients with a smooth workflow and cost effective prices.
Computer Assisted Translation (CAT) tools
In a nutshell these are tools which can create databases of previous (human) translations and as such enable their re-use, not just by the original translator but amongst whole translations teams. While translation memories can capture whole sentence structures and segments there are also so called translation glossaries, which are reduced to single terms such as company or product specific terminology and their appropriate usage.
Design tools and desktop publishing
As many translations occupy either more or less space than the original text and many languages have their own rules (for example Arabic languages run from right to left) embedding different language versions into (the same) artwork can be very challenging. For professional translations it is therefore vital that advanced workflow solutions allow translators to type their translations directly into the design templates before handing over to desktop publishers, who ensure that the end-product is on-brand.
Project management and the translation process
Multiple language translations for your content in multiple formats and places such as brochures, posters, emails or websites plus multiple – often remote working – specialists and teams to make it all happen, can only mean one thing: a very sophisticated, fool-proof and tailorable system is needed to manage (often multiple) translations projects successfully. This is where translations management technology comes in as it automates the whole translation workflow and offers a central and secure place to manage both, project and client information.
Neural Machine Translation
In 2018, we bit the bullet, so to speak, and invested heavily into Neural Machine Translation. Put simply, it has allowed us to translate a larger quantity of text significantly faster and at a much lower cost (between 80% to 50% of the standard human translation cost). We offer our NMT service in conjunction with Human Post-editing which improves the quality of the machine translation and removes any errors. Currently the main use of NMT is to render an understanding of the contents of a document, whatever the context, no matter how technical. We advise our clients to opt for NMT when the translation is not intended to be published and solely intended to render an idea of the contents.
Technology to cut costs – not corners
Translations technology has made it possible to leverage translation memories, link the translations and design work and overall to tailor and streamline the translations management process. As such technology has brought enormous productivity gains, cost savings and quality improvements to the translations industry. In light of the many benefits it can in fact be tempting to take automation further and further. However, it’s good to bear in mind that technology should never be used to cut corners and the first priority in professional translation must always be quality.
Do you need help with your translations project?
- At McFelder Translation we embrace the latest technologies in every aspect of our business.
- Our optimized workflows are all adapted to the specific needs of every client to ensure a tailor-made service that meets all your translation and budgetary requirements.
- We use the latest CAT tools, including translations memories and glossaries, in association with human and neural machine translators.
- We have our own in-house creative artwork team who are specialists in foreign language typesetting.
- We’ve been helping some of the world’s largest B2B corporations and government agencies localise their marketing content, both for internal and external communications