We’ve already talked about choosing between machine translation, wiki translation, and professional translation. If you decided you need professional translation, this guide is for you! Professional translation should be used for high quality jobs, for example, you need a report translated from English to Spanish. Or maybe you have an eBook written in German but you need to have a Japanese version for your new clientele. The task of translation can almost be described as an art. It is certainly about conveying the language, syntax, and symbolism of one language effectively in another. It is also about providing effective communication. A bad translation can impact your business or project significantly.
This means that the task of finding a professional translator is a serious one, and something you should engage in wisely. In this short guide, I want to share a few sound strategies for choosing a professional translator, whether it is an individual freelancer or a full translation agency. Look at the points mentioned as steps in your quest to find the perfect translator to complete your project.
What Makes A Good Translator?
Let’s define what makes a good translator. Most of the time, when you want to find a good translator you must look at their experience and related accreditation. While it is true that you can post your translation project on common freelance sites where anyone can bid, you may not get professionals knocking on your door. In that case, you might as well post it on WikiTranslation for free. A professional is more likely to produce a quality or “good” translation without any mistakes.
Part of evaluating a freelance translator or a team is to secure samples of their work. You should do this before you sign any agreements. Focus on getting samples translated into the native language you are targeting. It makes the most sense to hire a translator who is a native speaker or someone who has proven their facility with the target language.
You should find out as much as you can about the translator’s experience and track record. This can be a drawn out process if you want to review the profiles of multiple providers in order to get a sense of their ranking among other professional workers. At this point, you will also be evaluating their rates, turnaround times for projects, as well as additional skills like proofreading and editing.
Your decision about the type of translator may take time. Most pro translators strive to be competitive in all of these areas. You need to recognize that a quality translator may charge more for their services. Translators may charge by the project, the page, or even by the hour, depending on the overall parameters of the project.
You should do thorough research online and elsewhere to find a translator that meets good standards of quality text conversion. As was already mentioned, the task is the same whether you choose an agency specializing in translation services or you contact a freelancer directly. Take the time to evaluate providers carefully.
Evaluating The Work
This may not come up until after you’ve worked with a translator and the content has been completed. Still, if you want to ensure that your translated document meets quality standards, you may want to get a second opinion. Again, bringing in another native speaker such as another translator will help you evaluate the work itself. They will be familiar with the source language and will be prepared to pick out weaknesses or obscured passages in the text. Proofreading will cost less than a full translation, and you have another guarantee that the translation is what you wanted.
Why take this extra step? Look at this way: even if you hired a native speaker to begin with, you cannot guarantee they will do a stellar job. It’s about covering all of the bases.
The Value Of A Pro
A professional translator can be a valuable asset for your business. Of course, when a mistranslation can lead to dire consequences, professional translation is the best choice. Translation is about communication. You need to have effective communication in order to share your message with your target audience. Moreover, translation services allow you to broaden your reach and influence a broader audience.