How To Search for a Translation Service Provider?

May 19, 2023

In this day in age there are so many translation agencies to choose from. It is hard to sift through the long lists of language service providers to see who best fits your enterprise. Let’s look and try to figure out the optimal way to search for a translation service provider.

Consult Your Network, Use Your Resources, Then Start Your Quest.

First and foremost, the most straightforward approach would be to ask around in your network. There could be colleague or even clients who know people they work with. If it works for people in your network, there is a high percentage they are good for you. Prepare some good follow up questions. Is the agency reliable and stable? How satisfied are they with the translation services they have been provided? Is the quality good? You will be able to get a quick assessment from somebody you trust. If you would like to go further, you can go to the company website to research and even arrange to brief meeting with their staff. How they interact with you is another metric you can use to determine the mood and atmosphere of the organization. How they respond to your e-mail or call? Do they take their time with you and give you the attention you deserve as a client? How long did it take for them to respond? Did they seem enthusiastic? Did they ask about your needs? Is this agency willing to meet regularly to discuss your partnership? These questions give you a sense of how they deal with their clients. What would it be like working with this agency? You will be able to get a broad picture of the agency’s level of service.

What Languages Do You Need? What Do They Offer?

The next thing to find out is if they offer the language combinations that fits your budget. There is no reason to research any further if these don’t match your objectives. Most agencies have a price list with a list of languages they handle. Requesting this helps to know what to expect on how much you pay for a service. Please note many agencies need to review the assignment files in question to make a proper estimate. Due to the difficulty of the text and how technical it is can vary the prices of the assignment. Providing the files beforehand gives the agency time to provide an accurate estimate, delivery term, file preparation, advice, and possible discounts using TM software to accommodate repetitions and previously translated segments. Usually, agencies estimate using price per word. Check if translation includes proofreading by a second translator or not. If you’re offered an estimate that seems too good to be true, that agency might be skipping double checks to cut corners. You should clarify and know what you are getting for the price you are paying. The quality of the translation that is delivered is determined by this very detail. Transparency is key to knowing what you get for what you pay for.

What Processes and Procedures Are Utilized for Translation?

This brings us to the next point on how your translation is made. If you have a professional translation agency, they will implement efficient processes and procedures to handle your translation assignment. To ensure you get quality translation the agency should be regularly assessing their translator’s quality of work and proficiency. Criteria should be established for the linguist specialists’ level of education, experience, and technical skills. You should ask if the agency has some sort of vetting system in place. Another question you should ask is whether your agency uses a Translation Management System. TMS enables translation agencies to keep track of each assignment in all the difference languages combinations assigned. Making sure the text received from their client is translated properly. These processes help expedite the translation assignments, ensuring fast completion. Majority of TMS provide clients the opportunity to monitor the status of their assignments. They can view every ongoing and completed task that is during translation process and procedure. Then you would want to ask if the agency has credentials for the process and procedures mentioned. The most common are ISO 17100 and ISO 9001 to ensure measures are taken to provide quality translation services. Ask your agency if they have these qualifications.

What Technologies Are Utilized?

The next thing to ask is what type of technologies do they use to process the translation. What types of CAT (Computer Assisted Translation) tools and QA (Quality Assurance) tools do they use? If they use a CAT tool then your translation quality improves ensuring terminology are unified while saving money on previously translated text and repetitions. QA tools support detection and mitigates mistakes making your translation assignment error free. CAT and QA tools are beneficial for the quality and price of your final product. Ask your agency what tools they use and how they utilize them for your translation projects? If your translation agency utilizes these technologies with TMS integrations mentioned above, it is a good indication that they are keeping up with the latest industry developments and technologies. You want a translation agency that can provide solutions that result in these intelligent processes to maximize translation quality and cost efficiency.

How Long Have You Been Around?

The last thing to look for in a translation provider is to check how long they have been around. It would also be good to know your translation providers financial situation. You don’t want to find out your reliable partner is suddenly discontinuing its services. You want to avoid having to switch between agencies which wastes time and resources. This can be avoided by making the optimal choice in the very beginning. If possible, the best thing is to find a translation provider that can provide the language services you and your colleagues need. For example, you can send all your assignments to the same translation provider. It is also about finding a partner you can build a friendly professional relationship with. The translation process becomes much easier with familiarity and task optimization. The quality and delivery of your final translation is at its best when clients are at close courters with their translation provider. Building this important relationship starts with seamless communication. This is what we at idioma® specialize in. For over 40 years we have provided the quality translation services to our clients being ISO 17100 and ISO 9001 certified, following these processes and procedures with our custom made TMS(TC6), CAT(Doc3) and QA tool(CrossCheck®), we have innovated using the latest technologies providing the support and value our clients deserve. If you are looking for a translation provider or someone dissatisfied with their current one, please take this opportunity to contact us. It is always a pleasure getting to know new clients.

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