Most people rarely need a translator, and when they do, they don’t know how to evaluate and select one. Whatever your translation needs, they are too important for you to make a careless choice. Here are a few pointers that can help you make this important decision and insure good results.
Grammatically and Linguistically Correct
First you should feel confident that the translation services company you choose has translators with the experience and knowledge your project requires. You should also feel comfortable they will provide a translation that is grammatically correct and comprehendible to your intended audience. Before you select a translation services provider, follow this checklist to evaluate the credentials and background of the translators.
- Review their website. Is it appealing, informative, comprehensive, and grammatically correct? If not, don’t consider them.
- Speak with their project managers; take note of how you are treated and how promptly your calls are returned.
- If you’re still unsure, ask them for names of past clients you can contact as references.
- Evaluate the experience of the company. How long has it been in business? Does it have a track record of successfully serving large corporations?
- Working in a variety of software platforms is also very important. Look for translators who have extensive experience in laying out documents professionally so that they resemble the original. Even though many documents require only limited formatting, an experienced translator will have developed strong multidisciplinary skills over the years that insure that your project will be completed accurately, delivered on-time, look professional and appear like the original.
- Check the translation company’s Google rating. Although fake review services are plentiful, and online reviews can be gamed in many ways, Google’s system is one of the more reliable. The Google rating is awarded to translation companies that have achieved the highest levels of professional and ethical standards, according to reviews by their clients. The rating for 24 Hour Translation is among the best.
While you are researching companies or have narrowed your choice to a few translation companies that might fill your need, you should be aware of other considerations that you might not originally have thought of. These can make a difference in your satisfaction with the work you have done.
Think Small, But Not Too Small
When choosing a translation service, bigger is not necessarily better. Many large translation firms handle thousands of translation projects at a time. Thus no single client is likely to receive much individual attention. Because translation projects are often assigned in batches, the unique characteristics of each project can be lost in the shuffle. Projects are also generally assigned to generalists with little or no expertise in vocational or professional specialties and operations. The problems inherent in mass translation work may frustrate clients who expect personal attention and accurate attention to detail.
For your own safety, make sure that the company you are considering is based in the United States. Many companies list fake addresses on their websites or lease virtual office addresses to appear as though they are based in America when, in reality, they are based in third world countries where their poorly paid translators use unsecured computers, often in Internet cafes. In many cases, these companies offer low pricing, but clients have no legal protection. Even when you ask company representatives where they are located, you get false responses. These companies also may use online chat applications on their websites to overseas call center.
Ask the translation company if they will sign a confidentiality or non-disclosure agreement. Under certain circumstances, the translation project might require the translator to receive sensitive information, as many companies require secret and sensitive materials to be translated. Make sure that the company has a plan in place to ensure that your documents will be safeguarded.
Demand quick communication
Make sure that any firm you are considering promptly replies to your e-mails and voicemail and e-mail messages.
Get the most for your money
When you pay for a professional translation, do you assume that all or most of that money is going to the translator who completes the translation? That’s a reasonable guess, but most of the time it is incorrect. At 24 Hour translation, we keep costs low by keeping our overhead low and still employ the best translators to complete your project.