4 Reasons Why Quality Assessment in Translation Is So Important

by | Language Training

In dealing with any type of translation project, it’s pretty normal to expect a good quality product by the end of the process. However, language offers different challenges since you have to judge it in different ways depending on the metrics you’re evaluating.

An example of this complication could be elements like style and terminology, as they have subjective criteria. In contrast, there are also clear objective standards for quality and error when dealing with grammar and syntax. So how can you measure quality in translation?

Before moving ahead with any type of language translation provider, it’s essential to discuss and know the language service provider’s quality assessment process. To put it simply, just because it’s an accurate translation, this doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a translation of the highest quality.

In this article, we will share four reasons why quality assessment in translation is vital to guarantee an overall satisfactory result for all parties involved.

#1 Translators Will Achieve your Goals with QA

One of the fundamental pillars of assessing the quality of any translation work is to first understand clearly the clients’ requirements. This is then followed by a discussion of the purpose of the content and what you are trying to achieve. It may sound obvious for some, but you can measure the quality of the finished content by measuring it to the initial expectations and requirements.

Resources like style guides, glossaries, and target language should come from the buyer. The translation service provider cannot guarantee a good translation if they don’t have the required resources to complete the work. By being clear and providing the right resources at the start, allows for better results when the work is complete that matches the quality expected.

#2 Overall Improvement of Quality

Once the language service provider has all the necessary material to follow your guidelines, a quality assessment process allows both parties to set goals and find weaknesses during the translation project.

In this process, you can either use external criteria, like industry standards or develop a customized KPI tailored to your quality needs. It’s essential that the translation company has this as it allows the work to be complete within the unique requirements of the company. This can include elements like the target audience, culture, and dialect of the business goals.

#3 Identifies Significant Errors

Everyone has been there at some point. You finished a critical report, you’ve proofread it several times and finally hit send, but afterward, you find any small error that slipped through the cracks.

Many translation companies now implement translation tools that automatically assess quality control. This helps as a second assessment of the work and is able to pick out mistakes such as missing punctuation marks or typos to ensure a flawless final text. This allows for the text to be reviewed by both the human eye but with the added screening of an automatic translation tool.

The Localization Industry Standards Association (LISA) has come up with a way to represent the main errors found in a translated text with objective metrics that later can be interpreted as statistical information. In simple terms, the LISA Quality Assessment uses a point system with a maximum number of errors allowed, based on the total word count.

The errors identified are then categorized as minor, major, or critical, with different point values that help determine the analyzed text’s pass or fail status. By going through a quality assessment process, the language service provider can also look into the quality of their content and identify weak points.

#4 Guarantees Consistent Translations

When dealing with content translation, it’s vital to maintain the same tone, style, and vocabulary in any text or media you want to translate into your target language.

Quality assessment allows translators to evaluate how consistent these linguistic assets are in the project. As we’ve mentioned before, linguistic reference material like glossaries and style guides are essential for translators to translate throughout the entire project consistently. It even applies to future localized content since you need to keep the same linguistic assets for maintaining the same corporate image in the long term.

Quality Assessment in a translation project is vital and will always be the final step before delivering the work to the client. This way, the translation company can ensure the work is of the highest quality whilst meeting the clients’ requirements.

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