Standard Translation – What does it mean for Dragoman and on Translation Room?

Dragoman offers three service levels in translation: Standard, Plus and Gold. Our online portal Translation Room advertises these three levels on its front page. Is it just a marketing gimmick or a value-added service?

When pronounced together, one easily feels that standard is good, plus is better and gold is super. But what is exactly included in a standard service? Can you and should you buy this service for all your needs? Of course not.

* If you have a creative website or brochure, go for the GOLD, that is absolutely what you need. We will transcreate your message and offer alternative translations of the same copy, as requested.

* If you need a native speaker and/or subject matter expert to review your translation go for the plus. This will give your copy a native-like readability, improved clarity and fluency.

* If you want an accurate and clear translation, go for standard. We will take care of typos, specific terminology and overall quality.

Now let’s discuss this concept from a translator’s point of view. Because as we identify a translator’s tasks, ‘standard’ becomes much more than a claim, it evolves into a concept; a commitment for accurate and clear translation.

So, what are the standard job requirements for a translator?

1. Translation concept and theory

First and foremost, a translator needs to have a sound understanding of modern translation concept. To this end, referring to theories i.e. Scopos would be very helpful. In everyday language, one needs to learn how to balance between being loyal to the original copy and at the same time producing a clear and understandble translation in the target domain.

Translation Room partners have full acccess to the training content on this knowledge base. We want to help you find your balance and translate better.

To begin with:

  • Choose the shorter alternative among different ways of translating the same statement. It is easier to understand shorter lines. Example: Use attendees instead of people who attended
  • Don’t be shy to be a little descriptive to improve clarity of your translation. Example: Repeat the subject instead of continuing with he/she or it. This helps the reader to better follow the message.
  • Be relentless in your research to find the correct terminology – take the extra mile to cross check glossaries, websites, etc.
  • Master translation tools as described below.

2. Research and style

How advanced are you in Google search? Do you also check reference websites? Well I say you should. Research skill is essential to becoming a better translator. Nobody knows all, it is research that makes a difference.

Style is a lesser travelled path for many linguists. We recommend using AP Style Guide. Available online and also in in print. How consistent are you in writing numbers, dates, dashes, capitalization, etc.?

3. Translation technology and data

All our operations are based on Nubuto Cloud. Nubuto is a whitelabel version of XTM Cloud, a multi-award winning translation software. Please watch our training videos in Turkish or English to get familiarized with our tool. Nubuto helps all of us to manage the big data better. We are translating millions of sentences in dozens of languages every year. The more you understand how to use Nubuto, the faster and better you will deliver.

Key modules to master are quality filters, QA, concordance, concordance and TM (translation memory).

4. Terminology and concordance

Our software shows approved terminology on the screen. If you do not use the correct terminology, a warning symbol will appear on the right of the segment. You may also want use “concordance” feature. Type in a term, phrase or an entire sentence and search it in the concordance. This will show you our history. Dozens of translators & copy-editors have been working for the same clients in the past years. read what they have translated, learn from their experiences and improve your translation quality.

Please note that you may not have access to concordance data of certain clients or projects for confidentiality purposes.

5. QA

On the left menu, click on the ABC symbol to start QA (quality assurance). Nubuto (Translation Room) runs 20+ quality controls when you click on this button. You can identify major spelling and terminology errors with one click. You will need to repeat QA for every page. I choose to display 500 segments on my screen (adjust your segment number by clicking on the wrench symbol on the lst bar), which is enough for many daily jobs. If you are working on a larger job, make sure to move on to the next pages.

Some of the QA warnings are false positives, just ignore them. If there are too many false positives, please contact your project manager to update QA settings.

6. Filters

Quality filters are great help. You may filter 50+ options including inconsistent translations, repeat segments, fuzzy repetitions / matches, certain words / phrases, segments translated by a particular translator or in a given period of time.

Quality filters will help you review your job faster and more accurately.

7. Download / preview target file

QA, filters, terminology and concordance are technically means for assuring atomic quality. I mean, it is like dealing with every little tree or flower in forest. And if you want to see the big picture, the whole forest, you have to preview your target file, or download it for a longer desktop review. Give some break, rest for a while, go for a walk or get a fresh cup of coffee before your final proofreading. Nothing compares a final review of an educated translator.

That’s it. In seven steps you can deliver a standard quality translation. What is PLUS, what aboud GOLD? More articles will follow soon.

Thanks very much for reading this article and please add your comments to help us improve the content.

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