Partnership between the translator and the customer lies at the heart of a successful translation process. Naturally you, the customer, must be able to rely on us to provide a competent and efficient service. But at the same time, we rely on customers to provide the necessary background information and support to enable us to produce a high-quality translation. The following are essential elements in ensuring the quality of translations.
Context is absolutely vital to ensuring the correct interpretation of a text. In the case of long passages of continuous text, the context is generally apparent from the text itself. The issue is more critical in the case of short texts and the type of fragmented or notes-style text typically found in PowerPoint presentations. The meaning may be immediately apparent to those involved in the project, but not necessarily to outsiders.
Is the translation intended for a specialist audience or the general public? How much prior knowledge can the reader be assumed to have? The intended target readership can have a major influence on the choice of appropriate register and terminology and the need to provide further explanation, for example, of cultural references specific to the source language.
Purpose of translation
Is the text intended to be used in customer communications or simply internally for information? How “free” would you like or will you allow us to make the translation? Understanding the purpose for which a translation is to be used is often critical to the ability to produce a text in the target language that is “fit for purpose”.
If time is of the essence, we will of course endeavour to do everything in our power to accommodate your needs. We only ask that customers do not introduce unnecessary time pressures that may detract from the thoroughness with which we are able to carry out the various stages of the translation process:
- Familiarisation with the subject matter / background reading
- Terminology research
- Customer queries
- Consultation/review with translator
The more time we have to complete an assignment, the better the end product will be.