Marketing Managers for global brands must be able to effectively communicate with all stakeholders in multiple languages. For example, if your company sells in South America, then at a minimum, English to Spanish translation of your user guides, product manuals, and website copy are essential.
There are 6 options available in how global brands can manage their document translation needs:
- Use free machine translation websites such as Google Translate
- Use internal employees to translate
- Hire translators as employees
- Partner with a language services company
- Machine translation post edit (MTPE)
- Hybrid: internal employees and language services company partnership
1. Google Translate:
For informal information that doesn’t need to be accurate and where you need to just get the basic message understood, this option is helpful.
Why? Because it goes without saying that the translation will not be perfect. Additionally, the longer the content, the more translation errors there will be.
For formal documents like product manuals, user instructions, website text, or legal agreements, we do not advise using this option.
2. Internal Employees:
Using internal employees to translate documents takes them away from their regular jobs. Furthermore, just because someone speaks the target language does not qualify them to translate text accurately.
It takes a lot of work to produce an accurate translation, so doing it “fast” or “when the time allows” detracts from your ability to produce and deliver translations that you can be proud to release in the international marketplace.
All things considered, using staff as translators has more drawbacks than benefits.
3. Hire Translators as Employees:
It might make sense to hire employees as full time translators if there’s an ongoing need. But what if you need your documents translated in multiple languages?
Do you hire an employee for each language? To produce accurate translations you need a minimum of 2 translators per language. One to translate the content and one to edit/review the content. Otherwise you risk producing error prone translations.
4. Partner With A Translation Services Company:
If you cannot use the free machine translation widgets, use internal employees, or hire translators as employees, you may want to think about collaborating with a translation services provider.
This choice will probably give you the most versatility.
For example, this option would allow you to produce 100% accurate translation using an industry standard translation workflow and then have it internally reviewed for company or industry specific lingo.
Moreover, partnering with a translation services company would also enable you to create a translation memory (TM) in order to ensure consistency in terminology, tone, and style across all of your documents.
5. Machine Translation Post Edit (MTPE):
Machine Translation Post Edit (MTPE) is a hybrid workflow of machine and human translation capabilities. Normally, business cases where accuracy between 75% and 95% is acceptable are the ones that use this option.
Compared to a straight machine translation, this option has greater accuracy, a continuous flow, somewhat accurate terminology, and conveys the message without embarrassment. It is undoubtedly superior to simple machine translation.
Be aware, though, MTPE is not free. The editing of the machine translation by a human translator takes time. And it might be obvious that the translation was not done by a human translator.
Thus it is only utilized in specific business cases. In our experience, translating from scratch is typically quicker and more accurate than editing a machine translation.
6. Hybrid: Internal Employees and Language Services Company Partnership:
And finally, there’s the hybrid option where you acquire the expertise of a language services company because there’s too much to translate for your internal translators. This option works best if there’s an ongoing need for accurate translations. Translation memories (TM) play a big role in ensuring consistency in terminology, tone, and style for everyone involved.
Moreover, strict document controls will be needed. This option is the most expensive option and is generally practiced most often by Fortune 100 companies.
Are you a Marketing Manager responsible for communicating in multiple languages with global stakeholders such as customers, employees, and business partners? Then you are either already involved in translating documents or will need to do it soon in order to stay relevant in the global marketplace.
Otherwise, your competitors will be a few steps ahead of you.
All in all, EPIC Translations works with some of the biggest global brands such as BrandSafway, Maxcess International, University of Michigan, Guardian Industries, Emerson, and more in order to make sure their documents are translated 100% accurately.
Our agility, responsiveness, and capacity to meet tight deadlines are some of the reasons why nearly 100% of our clients come back to us time and again for translating their mission critical documents.
Currently, we are offering a FREE English to Spanish translation for one of your documents so you could assess our capabilities to see if we are the perfect translation business partner for you. To utilize this offer, please visit this page.
Thank you and EPIC Translations cannot wait to deliver accurate translations for your global brand.