Misunderstandings and mistranslations can lead to disastrous outcomes, especially when you’re having an important business project translated. Language barriers and mistranslations have led to newsworthy controversy in the United Kingdom and in the healthcare industry in recent years. There’s a few ways to avoid misunderstandings when you hire your next translation company, and make sure everyone is on the same page.
1) Remember you get what you pay for. Free online translators are handy for non-important translation projects or for a bit of fun when you want to figure out how to say something in another language. But for important translation jobs, its best to hire a reputable translation company and an expert in the language you’re translating. Mistranslations or missed deadlines can cause you to lose customers or offend potential clients.
2) Make sure your translator understands the dialect. If you’re translating to or from a language that has specific dialects based on region, make sure your translator understands the different dialects and the audience you’re communicating to in order to avoid communication errors.
3) Have your translator preview the project to make sure they can accept it. Before choosing or hiring a translator, give them a preview of the project to ensure they’re capable of completing it. You can also ask to see examples of previous projects that are similar to yours to make sure your translator is an expert in the niche you’re translating.
4) Set proper expectations in regard to timeframes. Before you hire a translator, make sure your timeframes and deadlines are communicated effectively. You want to know before you shell out money that your translator has the capacity to complete your project within the necessary deadline. Setting expectations is the key to success in any project, and translation projects are no different.
5) Be responsive and communicate with your translator throughout the project. Make sure you give your translator the best contact information to reach you in case he or she has questions during your project. Be prompt in your responses, in order to help your translator complete the project by the deadline and to your satisfaction. If you’re unresponsive to your translator it could lead to missed deadlines and communication errors.
6) Have the final product proofread. If you’re working on an especially important project or business document, you may want to have your final project proofread by another translator at your translation company or ask your translator if he or she can have it proofread by someone else before you give it the green light. Even the best translators can overlook things sometimes, so having an important translation project proofread is never a bad idea. The translators at Tomedes often work in teams to make proofreading final documents easy as can be.
Choosing the right translation company or translator is the key to avoiding misunderstandings on any translation project. By following these six simple steps you can avoid most misunderstandings on your next important translation request.