Home Get a QuoteBlog
1-800-320-1020 (North America)+44-20-3393-8385 (Europe)+972-3-5338633 (Middle East)

5 Tips on How to Achieve High-Quality Technical Translations

Translating technical content such as Quick Start Guides, installation manuals and operation manuals can be challenging due to the nature of the specialized terminology and information. In this blog post, I’ll describe five steps you can take to improve the quality of your translations and also reduce your costs.

  1. Start with a Current State Assessment

Do you know the quality of your translations? Have you received feedback from your customers? If you’re not sure, put a feedback mechanism in place. You can also get a professional translation quality assessment, which is a linguistic, cosmetic and functional review of any translated assets. Once you have some information, you can create a plan.

 

  1. Get Your Localization Project Off to a Good Start

Provide your localization service provider (LSP) with a complete translation project. Your LSP will request a localization kit, High-Quality Technical Translationswhich is a group of tools and sources of information such as previous translations, a translation memory (TM), a glossary, company style guide, software, company contacts, language set, target deadlines and more. This information will help your LSP become familiar with your content and requirements. The more information you provide, the better your project will turn out.

  1. Use Tools and Technology

One of the best tools you can develop is a glossary, which is a database of key terms and the associated translations. Key terms include words or phrases that are used frequently in your content and industry, and it can include terms like product names that shouldn’t be translated. Your LSP can set up your glossary and your in-country experts should review it initially and each time you add new terms. The glossary improves the quality of your translations because the terms are used each time they’re found in your content and it also reduces your cost as the terms will be recognized as repeatable words instead of new words.

Another invaluable tool is a translation memory (TM), which is a database of all your source content and the associated translated content. The LSP runs each translation project through the TM before the translators start the project. The TM pulls terms from your glossary and pre-populates the content for the translators. With each new project, the TM continues to grow and it improves consistency and reduces your cost.

Every company has their own branding and associated styles for their customer-facing presence and most companies have an associated style guide. The style guide contains rules and guidelines for things like fonts, font sizes, logo placement, color definitions, heading styles and many others. Your LSP will follow your style guide when they prepare the localized content. If you don’t have a style guide, your LSP can help you create one.

  1. Use Knowledgeable Translators

With technical translations, the content usually contains specialized product and / or service terminology. In order to generate the highest quality translations, work with your LSP to get the right translators. For example, in the medical industry, translators need to have the particular specialized knowledge in order to accurately translate the content.

In addition, the translators should be located in the target country. Technical translations can have legal or safety consequences and native-speaking translators will be the best ones to develop the content.

Train the key LSP team members, such as the project manager, translators and reviewers on your products and / or services. The more knowledgeable your team is, the better the translations will be.

  1. Follow a Thorough Localization Process

Translating content is just one step in a multistep localization process. After the content is translated, your in-country reviewers should review it. Ideally, the same people who reviewed the glossary will review the content. This step will improve the quality of the content and TM. Also, your LSP should have at least a few quality checks throughout the process.

Conclusion

By following these steps, you should be able to increase the quality of your technical translations and even save some money. For additional information, make sure to follow our Technical Translation and Localization LinkedIn Showcase Page or reach out to us; we’re here to help.

 

About the author:

Gal Yisar

Gal Yissar has served as Chief Executive Officer at Net-Translators since 2008. In this position, Mr. Yissar leverages a multifaceted understanding of the localization industry as well as deep expertise in strategic management and operational business processes to guide the company’s growth toward global localization leadership. One of Net-Translators’ first employees, Mr. Yissar joined the company in 2004 as Vice President of Professional Services.Mr. Yissar’s move to Net-Translators was preceded by 10 years of diverse experience in senior management positions in Israel’s high-tech industry.

Leave a Reply

Contact Us