Eight rules for high quality translationOlena Grinyuk
Eight rules for a high quality translation
First, we have to explain what is the meaning of expression “high quality translation”. How the quality is defined?
It is worth noting that the way in which translation quality is defined might depend on content, business purposes and your target audience for the translated text. According to the simplest definition, high quality translation means mistake-free target text and the one that reads naturally. In case of specialised texts, the quality of translation is determined by translation accuracy with an emphasis on specialised terms. In case of corporate documents we consider the specific company’s culture [so called corporate culture] and terminology. In case of marketing materials, translation should be oriented to achieve a specific goal (in this particular case, the translation shall not be literal – it will include phrases, idioms and expressions of the language used by customers in the target market).
No one understands your company and your business objectives better than you do, that is why direct cooperation with the translation agency will guarantee the best quality translation of your product.
Here are some rules that will help you to achieve a high quality translation of your product:
- Make sure that the translation (as well as editing and, if necessary, proofreading) will be done by a native speaker. This constitutes the basics of a high quality translation. You should remember that the ability to understand and speak a foreign language does not mean the ability to perform high quality translation. It’s just the basis for translation. High quality of a translation is guaranteed by a translator, who has a thorough knowledge of a grammar and syntax, as well as proficiency of the target language at level that enables him to produce the target text that reads naturally. The text flows smoothly in a target language and does not read as a translation. Only a native speaker translator can provide such a high-quality translation.
- Provide your manager from the translation company examples of the previous translations that you find to be satisfactory (or unsatisfactory) in the terms of quality.
- Provide your manager from the translation agency a glossary (term base) that is adequate to the business policy of your company. If you don’t have a glossary, create it jointly with the translation agency before starting translation process. This is to ensure you that all specialised terms that refer to your product or business will be translated correctly. And translation agency will be able to check if the terms that appear in any part of the text have been translated properly.
- If possible, let translator learn about your product (give him access to trial version of web page, link to the product documentation etc.) to enable him to match translations to the context of the product.
- Provide for the translation a high quality text on a source language, because its version on the target language will not become better.
- Appoint a person in your company to be responsible for the contact with the translation agency, so that the manager from the translation agency could ask for clarification of details of the product.
- Set aside enough time to carry out a translation, because “fast” and “high quality“ are not synonymous.
- After completing a translation and when you have your product in final format (web page, document in pdf format etc), send it to the translation agency for proofreading, i.e. to verify the target text in its final version as a product, before presenting it to customers.
- We offer translation services from English to Polish, Russian and Ukrainian and from Polish, Russian and Ukrainian into English