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Quality V. Speed


When translating a document, quality is always top priority. However, what happens when the translation is needed urgently? Even though deadlines are important, quality should not be compromised. In such cases, clients or translation agencies must cooperate when possible with the translators to deliver the best possible results. The most important is reducing time limitations and there are multiple ways of doing this:

Term Bases

Many companies can facilitate glossaries, sometimes also known as Term Bases, with specific or basic terminology. This helps in three different ways: The first, by reducing research time on behalf of the translator; second, the terms that are preferred by the client will be implemented; and third, it helps maintain the consistency and accelerates the task of the person editing the document. Something worth mentioning about this third point is that depending on how much time we have, we are sometimes left with no other choice than to divide the translation into 2 or 3 translators. At this point, having a Term Base becomes crucial to the consistency of the document.

Reference Material

Setting time aside to regroup reference material can be key in achieving top quality in a short time span. However, the material compiled has to be somewhat limited, because otherwise the translator can spend his or her valuable time going through material that is irrelevant. On the other hand, having the necessary information can reduce the back and forth time between the translator and client, which can often be lengthy and at times cause meaningful delays in between responses.

Document Updates

Many times assigning a document to a translator can be delayed because there might be updates or changes from the client’s part to the document. At times, these updates can represent days of delay of the linguistic process even when the update has not exceeded the 500 words. Any resource who uses a translation tool, as do most translators, should not have issues starting the translation and later implementing the updates. Therefore, we must keep in mind that if we are using a resource who uses a translation tool, it is not necessary to delay the process. Undoubtedly, the quote provided to the client based on the original document will be updated with the new word count and any other change in cost due to the implementation of the changes or updates.

These three steps will benefit the client as well as the translators when faced with an urgent translation. Deadlines are important to meet thus time must be maximized when possible.  Managing term bases, reference material and beginning the translation as early as possible will all be important in overcoming any time obstacles.

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