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10 do's and don'ts: how to get the best service (and spend less)

Bear in mind the points below, to enjoy top quality services and spend less.

Provide translators with the context, so that they can better understand what it is about, especially in the case of machinery or technical devices (the entire article, even if only a part of it needs to be translated, other articles; also photographs, or drawings, even if they do not contain any text). If possible, provide reference materials concerning the same subject-matter written in the target language, documents which have been translated previously, for example. Never forget any glossaries or terminology repositories which can be available at your enterprise, which serve to ensure terminology consistency.

Avoid sending in just lists of words or short descriptions taken out of context, which it could be impossible to translate, as there is no means to resolve the ambiguities.

Allow enough time for the translation to be done. The translation will not be done well in half the time by doubling up the number of translators. Avoid incurring higher prices for urgent work by allowing enough time for the translation to be done well (as a guide, a number of days equal to the number of words divided by 2,000 for an average job).

Remember: good translators always have a high volume of work to complete, and the translations carried out in a hurry are never the best!

Specify a person within your organisation as a point of contact for any problems of terminology which could possibly arise: terminology is different not only from industry to industry, but also from company to company; each company has its own jargon, and abbreviations are often highly personalised.

Clearly define your target audience: a Brazilian does not speak like a Portuguese, corporate managers' expectations are different from those of general readers, the layperson seldom understands the specialist.

Send in the best possible copy of the text: texts difficult to read lead to mistakes in understanding, especially when the context is not sufficient to suggest interpretations.

Translation of the same text into various languages: have you considered the possibility of giving priority to one of the languages? By making a pilot, any problems in the text to be translated can be resolved, thus reducing ambiguities, and making the work flow fast in the other languages.

Create a long-term relationship and give us feedback on the work which we have completed for you: in this way our results can be constantly improved, leading to mutual satisfaction.

Eventually, get a free quote for your translation!

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