Translation companies in today’s market need to find new ways to cut costs, increase productivity, yet maintain quality. Technology has played a large part in facilitating this shift, but an important piece that can’t be replaced is the human translator who can ensure the general meaning of the original text remains intact.
Globalization has opened up the door for a new method of finding inexpensive translators. Outsourcing translation work to countries where the cost of living and salaries are lower has allowed companies to continue to provide excellent translation services, but at a much lower cost. The question now is how do you decide upon and vet a company overseas that you can trust?
The first step is targeting countries where your most in-demand languages are spoken. You must then pick countries (often the developing world) where those languages are spoken.Your goal is to find companies in nations where labor costs are less than those of domestic companies.
Figuring out what translation vendors abroad are more well known and professional is more simple than one would think. Their website should be well done, they should clearly state what they offer, have testimonials, and clients you know. Once you have discovered some viable options, you should proceed to contact the vendor. Your initial contact with a vendor should be over e-mail. This is when you introduce yourself, your company and the partnership you are trying to accomplish. Well established vendors overseas are used to working with companies in the U.S. and will be very comfortable discussing their process and procedures. If they respond positively, I recommend setting up a Skype video session. Having a person in front of you who represents this company gives you greater insight into who they are and the level of their buisness acumen. Have a list of questions prepared and propose scenerios that help determine the vendor's ability in this industry.
It is important that you have your potential vendors complete a translation test. Have this test reviewed by a credible linguist. This linguist does not need to be notified that this is a test, and simply have them perform editing duties as they normally would, and ask for their overall assesment of the language. At this point it should be clear whether you would have a succesful relationship with this new vendor. It is important to invest a bit of time and money making sure the quality of their work is reliable, and that they deliver projects in a timely manner. Though this process can take a great deal of resources, the value obtained from having credible, talented linguists is massive.
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