How to Reduce Your Translation Costs?
Are you managing your company’s translation spend? Chances are you’ve been incensed by the very high translation costs you often get from your localization vendors. Professional, quality translation services are expensive. After all, translation work is a manual process which is time consuming, and only highly experienced translators with specialized training and domain expertise can deliver the best results.
The good news is quality translation services don’t have to be so expensive anymore due to technological advancements in the last few years. Specifically, Internet technologies continue to deliver ever-increasing advancements while driving down costs. This means language translation companies like Stepes that proactively invest in R&D stand to gain the most by leveraging the latest technologies that provide clients very fast, competitive solutions.
- Translation Management Automation. If you look at typical project estimates from your localization vendors carefully, you will likely see an entry called Project Management Fee. The language industry’s long-established convention is to charge 10%, 7% or 5% of the project total for project management. Project management typically involves the following actions:
- Receive project requests from customers and then arrange resources to analyze files to produce a translation cost estimate and ETA (estimated delivery time.)
- Communicate with customers for cost approval and schedule confirmation.
- Arrange necessary linguistic, engineering, and DTP resources to prepare localization kits and kick off the project.
- Communicate with clients with weekly (or daily) project updates and linguistic queries.
- Conduct linguistic QA for selected (or full) portions of translated texts.
- Manage post-processing, desktop publishing, and update translation memory (TM)..
- Deliver localized documents to clients.
- Archive project files for future project leverage.
- Submit project invoices for payments.
As you can see, project management involves many human touch-points and is highly labor intensive, which leads localization vendors to charge a big fee for this work…until now.
With the advent of online translation services, like Stepes, which has developed an online translation management portal, project management is streamlined and all of the above human touch-points are automated. As a result, Stepes is able to complete your translation projects efficiently and cost effectively.
Even though we have automated project management, it doesn’t mean you can’t speak to a live client services manager anymore for special and urgent requirements. Our dedicated client services managers are always standing by to answer your questions whenever you need them.
- MTPE (Machine Translation Post-Editing). The word “Translation” has been predicted to completely disappear or change its meaning when computerized translation solutions achieve even higher quality and cover more languages. Machine translation (MT), especially the latest neural MT, has fundamentally changed the way the language industry works. Stepes is among the world’s first LSPs to implement MTPE for both desktop computers and mobile. As a result, our translators are able to drastically gain production efficiency while maintaining the highest linguistic accuracy. We share these productivity savings with our clients.
- Translation Reuse. Translation Memory (TM) technology is one of the earliest innovations in the language industry. CAT (computer aided translation) tools first came to the localization world because of their ability to save translated sentences (or segments) in a database so that they can be reused for future projects. There are different levels of reuse called fuzzy matches that usually range from 75%-100%. Since fuzzy matches are only charged at a fraction of new word rates, TM technology helped companies save significantly on translation costs compared to others that didn’t use it, especially when a company’s localization spend is large. Besides cost savings, TM technology also allows translation projects to be completed more quickly and with better linguistic consistency because little or Professional localization companies like Stepes use TMs by default for all of our projects and we share the cost savings with our clients as a standard business practice.
- Terminology management. One of the key differentiators between Stepes and other language services companies is that we developed the world’s largest cloud terminology management system long before others jumped onto the idea of cloud computing. As a result, we have the largest multilingual terminology management system with millions of terms in over 1,700 subject domains and 100+ languages. We are able to leverage these multilingual terminology assets to achieve the highest linguistic quality. By now you may be wondering what managing terminology has to do with translation cost savings. Contrary to popular belief that terminology management is for better language quality only, the number one benefit of managing your lexicons is localization cost saving for the following reasons:
- Effective terminology management eliminates costly term research by translators. One of the most time-consuming tasks in language translation is efforts spent on finding the most accurate translations for your highly technical terms. By making these technical translations readily available on-demand, linguists are able to translate 30% faster, leading to significant productivity improvement.
- Consistent and accurate translation of technical terms eliminates rework, leading to drastically reduced project costs. There are numerous examples of companies spending millions trying to correct translation errors due to terminology mistakes in patent applications, product recalls, and medical lawsuits. Stepes ensures that all of your important product terminology is translated accurately, every time.
To ensure the best ROI for your translation spend, you must choose companies with very strong technical strength, large linguistic resources, and cloud (online) translation support. These factors will ultimately decide how affordable and efficient a localization vendor’s productivity is.