As content becomes more and more important in a company’s marketing and customer service efforts, huge volumes of content are now being produced regularly. To cater to their multilingual customers, companies must make this content available in their languages simultaneously.
Any stumbling blocks in this process extends the time required to enter a market or launch a particular product line. This, in turn, impacts the revenue. This is how critical the timely and quality translation of huge volume projects is.
Big translation projects take careful planning, adequate and qualified resources, and continuous management to pull them off. Here’s how we recently completed a huge volume translation project in a very short turnaround time.
The client required us to deliver 500,000 words every week over a duration of six weeks. The translation was from English to Bahasa Indonesia. The content was in the domain of software — user interface (UI) and user assistance (UA).
The volume of the project would mean that many linguists would need to work on the project. This presented challenges not only in terms of recruiting the right linguists with a suitable profile but also ensuring that quality would be maintained even when working with multiple linguists.
The client required that we deliver multiple files on time every week.
A solid tech infrastructure would need to be in place to work on this project. The translation management tool would need to allow many linguists to work simultaneously on different parts of the project and provide for version tracking.
We set about creating a solution and a plan for the project before it started. This is how we did it:
- We planned well about aligning translators and project managers (PMs).
- We customized the workflow to minimize the turnaround time.
- We put in place a progress tracking mechanism for better visibility and control of the project.
- We shortlisted qualified linguists based on a test we gave them related to the content. Testing before recruiting would ensure good quality from the beginning of the project.
- We put together a team of PMs based on their experience of handling large volume projects. These PMs were well aware of the possible risks associated with such projects and how to handle them without having any impact on translation quality and timelines.
- We have developed an internal language quality assurance (LQA) system to check the quality of translation from the beginning of the project. We used the same system to check the linguistic quality and do QA checks on the partially completed work of all linguists involved in the project. It helped in sharing timely feedback with translators so that they could learn and avoid making the same mistakes in the rest of the files. We did the LQAs regularly throughout the project. We got on calls with our language leads to clarify the queries of linguists.
- We also did QA checks regularly on partial deliveries as an extra quality control measure. This helped us identify errors at an early stage and work with the translators in correcting them. It not only improved the quality of the translation but also reduced turnaround time as we didn’t have to do an additional round of QA fixes.
- We scheduled the delivery date for each file and did daily tracking. It is not easy to work with multiple translators or track multiple files. Our team prepared a well-structured schedule with the information of the files, names of translators, and estimated dates for completing each activity. Regular tracking helped us get better visibility of the progress of the work. We could also see any potential for delays and take quick decisions to resolve the problem.
- We did a compliance audit of the project to check progress and adherence to guidelines.
- We divided the work into batches and worked on them in parallel.
- We used Memsource, a translation management system (TMS), to execute the project. All of the linguists and project managers had been trained to work on this TMS.
We handled more than 2.5 million words within a short deadline. The client was so impressed with the speed and quality of the work that they now regularly send us such large volume projects.
The quality of the translation was good: we received above 98% score in a quality evaluation done by the customer.
Apart from the benefits of speed and quality, the client could enjoy great transparency. At any time, they could quickly see the status of the project.
Our quality checks on partial deliveries assured the client of how we constantly monitor quality and not just at the end of the project.
All of this helped the client maintain their internal deadlines to launch the product in Indonesia on time, a key market for the customer.