We can all agree that when sending important texts for translation, you want to make sure that they are in good hands. After all, your company message lies in how it is perceived in the translated language. However, many translation projects end up being relatively hands off for clients. In the video below, we breakdown the standard translation process for you, so you know what to expect going into your translation project, and so that you know what to expect when you receive your materials back!
When requesting professional translation services, how involved you are in the process of your documents being translated depends on the nature of your project. Sometimes you may be in close contact with your project manager, and other times it may seem entirely hands off.
For those times where you have very limited involvement in your translation project, you may wonder what goes on in-between sending your documents to a translation agency, and receiving them back in your target language. This period of time is what we refer to as the translation workflow.
But How Does the Translation Workflow Work?
The translation workflow varies for every single project – no two are exactly the same. However, at Language Connections, most projects will follow the same general work flow from beginning to end.
Step One: Document Review, Word Counts and Quoting (on screen)
Like most agencies offering professional translation services, in order to give you an accurate quote on how much a translation project will cost we will need to receive the document. Physically looking at your documents allows project managers to assess the complexity of the text, as well as the overall word count. In this stage we will also perform document review.
Document review is an essential part to beginning a translation project. In this step, project managers will assess the format of the document, what its ultimate use will be, and what your exact translation needs are. They will then count the number of words, as well as repetitions. Quoting is done this way due to the fact that translators charge on a per-word basis, not per-page as is often thought.
At Language Connections quotes are never binding, and if you have any budget concerns, our project managers are available to discuss pricing with you in depth.
Step Two: Document Translation (on screen)
Once you have approved the quote for your project the document will be sent to the professional translator (or translators depending on the project’s size) in our network. This translator will be chosen by your project manager based on experience and industry expertise. Depending on the size of the document, turnaround can either be a few business days or done according to an agreed upon schedule to ensure delivery always meets your deadlines.
Step Three: Back Translation (on screen)
Once the translation has been completed, you have the option of requesting a back translation. Back translation is a process where the translated materials are received by a third party translator, fluent in both the source and target languages. The back translator, without access to any of the original documents, will translate the material back into the source language to check for accuracy. This process is generally only used for extremely sensitive materials where there is absolutely no room for error – examples of these are legal documents and clinical research and patient recruitment documents.
Step Four: Proofreading (on screen)
Once the translator is done, the documents are proofread to ensure accuracy. The proofreader will be fluent in the source and target languages, and will be knowledgeable about the subject matter of the text. He or she will ensure that the translator has done his or her job well and consistently, in line with best practices grammatically and according to your project needs. The translation will then be returned to your project manager who will look over it once more to ensure there are absolutely no errors.
Step Five: DTP and Formatting (on screen)
DTP (Desktop Publishing) and formatting is then done to put your translated text back into the structure it was originally received in. However, this formatting will also take into consideration the market of the document and adjust as needed – for example if you have English text being translated into Hebrew, it will be formatted to accommodate the right to left reading style. This is important for marketing collateral, websites and creative documents where user experience and formatting is a key part of the message being portrayed by the material.
Step Six: Delivery (on screen)
Once DTP and formatting is complete, you’ll receive your translated document(s) back in PDF format (or in person depending on what works best for you) along with a free certificate of accuracy if required, certifying that the piece was translated by a professional agency as faithfully as possible. And that’s it for the translation workflow!
Depending on the size of your project, the translation workflow can take anywhere from a few days to a few months. Larger and more complicated projects can also expect slight variations in the workflow depending on their needs. However, regardless of the size of your project Language Connections always guarantees individualized attention to our clients, ensuring that you are always in the know about your project, and that all of the steps in the translation workflow are done to your satisfaction.