Translation calls not only for a range of skills and knowledge, but also for the ability to work fast. Deadlines can be tight and word counts can be high, and even the speediest, most reliable translators need a little technological help to get the job done. Enter the use of computer-assisted translation (CAT) software and other tools for translation.
If you’ve not worked with a translator before, you might feel that because the software is taking care of some of the linguistic heavy lifting, you’re not getting value for money. However, choosing a translator who uses this type of software is a good thing. Below is a look at why you should choose a translator who uses Trados, memoQ, Wordfast or similar tools for translation work.
The software helps your translator work more efficiently
CAT tools for translation make it easier for your translator to work with documents in different formats. Often, your translator can upload the original document and start working on it, rather than waste time exporting files and trying to recreate the original formatting. Note that this isn’t always the case, however, and some documents and file types will still require extensive formatting.
Using a CAT tool for translation also enables your translator to deal with large volumes of text much easier and deliver your translation on time. Ultimately, you can translate more content quicker.
The software keeps your translations consistent
Translation software, or ‘translation memories’ as they’re commonly called, save translations of words and phrases automatically when the translator is working with a text. Whenever the translator is working with a new document, the software presents any similarities between texts they’ve previously translated for you and the new material.
This is good news for your brand because it ensures consistency, which is essential in branding. The CAT tool allows the translator to translate terminology, brand statements and other bits of language the same each time.
The use of the software helps you keep your costs down
The translator’s use of translation tools and software doesn’t just benefit your own marketing and project management timings; it can help improve your own bottom line as well. Since translation software flags similarities between previous translations and new materials, ethical translators will charge you less for repeat translation of (technical) terms or phrases that have appeared in previous translation projects they’ve worked on for you.
The software improves the quality of your translator’s output
In the rush to complete a translation, quality can suffer. If you’re unable to set your translator a generous deadline, the CAT tool will still help them to deliver a translation free of spelling mistakes, typos, grammar errors and other issues. Translation software makes it easier for translators to spot these faux pas instead of forcing them to identify them manually.
Hiring a translator who knows how to use CAT tools for translation and does so is a good thing. They’ll be able to turn translations around more quickly for you, ensure consistent use of terminology, deliver high-quality translations free of errors and keep the cost of your translations down.
If you have any questions about the translation tools or software your translator uses, don’t be scared to speak to your translator. A good, trustworthy translator will be happy to explain their use of the tools.