Everyone is aware how useful Google Translate is. Equally we are all aware of its limitations.
But by adopting an informed approach to the use of Machine Translation Technology, it’s an easy transition to having a really useful and reliable business tool at your fingertips.
And one that can extend your budgets, and generally enhance your overall business performance.
Here are a few examples:
- Being able to evaluate documents that arrive in an unfamiliar language is a regular challenge for many businesses.
- You may simply need to establish if the documents are relevant in total, or in part, before committing unnecessary costs to this activity
- Machine Translation provides a low cost, very fast means to translate documents to sufficient quality for you to evaluate them.
- It’s then an easy task to have just the content you need translated with greater accuracy.
- Saves you time and cost.
- If your organisation engages with a supply chain, or with clients who create or require documentation in their own language, then Machine Translation can provide a fast, cost effective solution.
- By combining Machine Translation with professional editing, a reliable version can be achieved, suitable for use by your contracts, procurement or finance teams.
Because technical documentation must be accurate, we only provide this service to clients where we hold (or can create):
- A comprehensive Translation Memory in each of your languages
- Up to date terminology dictionaries
Invariably, the quality of the Machine Translation will need improving by a professional editor before it’s ready to publish.
This is integrated service, that takes your original documents through the translation process and delivers a ready-to-publish version in all the languages you need.
What makes a great machine translation service?
- Honesty. Machine translation should never be passed-off as a professional, human translation
- Your needs should be assessed to determine the best solution before translating anything
- Request a free test translation to make sure that you’re happy with the outcome
- Your vendor should have multi-lingual staff who will assess the machine translation output and identify any issues that could affect reasonable comprehension of the translation
- Retention of page layout to match your original documents
- Quality can be enhanced through:
- Light editing by a professional editor to improve the general quality of a machine translation
- Heavy editing where accuracy is important
- The ability to ‘train’ the Machine Translation engines for your business, resulting in an improved standard of basic translation
- A knowledgeable vendor who will help you create the service that you need.
Managing the outcome
Some important do’s and don’ts:
- DO accept advice provided by your translation provider. They’ll be trying to achieve the best outcome for you.
- If translating from scanned or faxed pages DO make sure the original documents are legible, not skewed or with dark background colours
- DO remember it doesn’t work with handwritten texts
- DON’T expect Machine Translation to deliver perfect results where Style and Tone-of-Voice are important criteria
- DON’T expect good results if the original documents are of poor quality
- DON’T expect subject specific terminology to be correctly translated unless approved term dictionaries already exist