When Translation Quality Stays High, Risk Stays Low

Research we’ve carried out confirms the overriding importance of translation quality in many industries: our Translation Technology Insights report respondents indicated that quality matters 2.5 times more than speed and 6 times more than cost.

As someone who works on translations at a law firm, you won’t be surprised by these findings. You’ll know full well that translation errors can have far-reaching consequences for both a law firm and its clients, ranging from wrongful convictions to damaged reputations and lost business.

Manual methods compromise quality

If you’re dealing with a rising volume of translations in your firm, then you and your colleagues are probably in the habit of reusing approved content from previous translations. But doing so can introduce mistakes — such as the wrong client name appearing in a document, or subtle differences in content or context being missed.

Besides content reuse, translators in your firm doubtless maintain glossaries or terminology lists to help ensure use of approved terms in translations. But it may not be simple to share those lists, nor clear whose job is it to manage updates and additions to them.

So what steps can you take to protect the quality of the translations your firm produces, while keeping pace with demand?

CAT: the software solution for translators

To maintain a high standard of translation it makes sense to look at opportunities to improve your in-house process, using technology to automate repetitive tasks and reduce the risk of errors creeping in.

If you’re simply using standard office productivity apps (such as Microsoft Word or Excel) for translations, you’ll be missing out on all the ways that software designed specifically for translators can help you raise your translation game. With a computer-assisted translation (CAT) tool, you and your colleagues will produce high-quality translations faster and smarter.

Here’s how:

  • Reuse existing content with less risk. CAT tools can store your existing translations for reuse in new projects, identifying elements that can be reused – and keeping those that can’t out of new translations. If you’re working with a lot of repeated content, such as tenancy agreements or wills, you could save a great deal of time and increase translation quality in one move.
  • Simplify management of preferred terms. CAT tools enable you to manage all of your firm’s approved and preferred terminology in a centralized database, instead of an Excel spreadsheet. That database can be used by every full- or part-time translator in your firm, raising quality and consistency across the board.
  • Lighten the load for reviewers. You don’t want reviewers to waste their time rereading approved content reused from previous translations. CAT tools make it easy for reviewers to distinguish between new and reused content in a translation, so they can focus their efforts on ensuring the quality and accuracy of new sections. SDL also makes it possible for reviewers to give feedback directly to translators in a secure online environment rather than relying on paper notes or endless versions of Word documents, reducing the chance or errors slipping in between different drafts of a translation.

CAT tools can make a real difference to the ease and speed with which your firm produces accurate, consistent translations. Maintaining close control over translation quality will help your firm reduce risk, maintain its reputation and enhance the service it delivers to its global clients.

Ready to find out more?

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