Now that you want to hand over your document for translation, are you sure you will get quality results? The market is full of quacks, and there are some things that you need to know before engaging a translator. The move equates with performing due diligence to ensure that you get value for your money.
So, what do you need to know before handing your document over for translation?
Qualities of a good translator
You have to confirm that your translator has the right expertise to translate your document. According to the Arabic Document Translation Services, the following are some of the qualities that you should look for in a translator:
1- Native language background
You should ensure that your translator belongs to the community that speaks your target translation language. Even though some translators are bilingual, the translator has to know your target language well.
Having a native background comes first when looking for a translator. A translator with a target native language background will produce results that align with the required context of the translated document.
2- Cultural awareness
The quality that comes second to the native language background is cultural awareness. Your translator should know the cultural elements and idioms of the original document language and the target language.
Notably, words have different meanings among different communities. So, you can find a polite word in one community is not polite in another community. For this reason, your translator has to know how to translate the words and give them the correct meaning.
3- Keen nature
Your translator must be keen on the fine details of the original and translated document. Any omission can throw words out of context. So, your translator has to maintain a high level of awareness during the translation process.
However, you have a part to play during the translation process. You should ensure that the document that you give out for translation is error-free. You can opt to proofread the original document or outsource for proofreading services.
Some documents hold information that one will use in a future meeting. So, the translation process has a timeframe. For this reason, ensure that your translator can meet your deadline without any failure. To be on the safe side, you should collect your translated document a few days before the deadline.
One of the ways you can employ to assess the punctuality of your translator is their response time. If they take long to respond to your inquiry, release them. Such translators do not know how to keep time. Engaging such translators will result in a delayed translation process.
5- Excellent writing skills
Notably, translating and writing are two different exercises. So, they require different skills. When looking for the best translator, look for an expert in translating and writing.
Your translator must write with expertise. They should know the difference in various writing styles. For example, they should know the difference between writing a promotional tone and a formal tone.
Also, your translator should have top-notch grammar skills. Your document should not have any grammatical errors. Otherwise, its readers may lose interest in reading it. So, you should assess the writing skills of your translator.
6- Quality research skills
Your translator must hold quality research skills. They have to search for the meaning of some words during the translation exercise. They also have to research the background of the target language, among other things.
If the translator has poor research skills, they will provide low-quality translation services. As a result, your document will have poor quality.
7- Compliance with proven translation practices
The translation process has to comply with some industry standards. So, your translator has to prove that they understand the practices and apply them when translating documents. For example, you should identify whether your translator employs a peer-review process. Such a move ensures that the end document goes through a second lens that affirms its quality.
8- Employment of a sound translation judgment
Is your translator a good decision maker? You should ensure that your translator knows to select the correct vocabulary for your document. The translator should also know how much research to conduct and when to be more specific.
Even though translation judgment employs instincts, your translator should showcase their expertise in the decision-making process.
9- Technological expertise
Your translator should have basic computing skills. They should know how to use the basic office programs, such as MS Word and Excel. Notably, your document will require printing. So, it should be in soft copy.
10- Appropriate personal qualities
Always be on the lookout for the appropriate personal qualities. Your translator requires to have the following traits:
- Good organization: Your translator should manage their time well. They should also be experts in record keeping.
- Self-motivation: Your chosen translator should be willing to go the extra mile to deliver quality translation results. They should not wait until you ask for something. Instead, they should keep you engaged throughout the translation process.
- Dependability: You should check the reviews of your chosen translator. If you see a lot of complaints regarding timeliness and quality of work, drop the translator.
- Adaptability: Your translator should be willing to accommodate your instructions. They should also have an open mind that does not take criticism and suggestions personally.
- Integrity: Confidentiality is paramount during a translation process. Your translator should never share the details of your document with any third party.
- Curiosity: Your selected translator should enjoy their work. They should possess a natural curiosity that drives them to know the meaning of some texts.
- Professional pride: A translator with professional pride is confident in his work. Confidence comes from the possession of expertise in a field of operation. If you find that your translator is doubtful about some things, look for another one.
What to look for in the best Arabic translation service provider
You should look for the following qualities in an Arabic translation service provider:
1- Client focus
Your translation provider should place you before their business gains. They should understand your needs and satisfy them fully. Also, they should make you feel assured that they will provide high-quality services. Overall, your provider should let you have peace of mind knowing that they will do the right job.
How do you tell that your translation service provider is client-focused? You should find them:
- Easy to contact
- Fast responders to your inquiries
- Proactive when addressing your interests.
2- High-quality communication skills
You should choose a translation service provider that sends a clear message. Such a provider should be transparent whenever they are communicating with you. If you notice any confusion in the provider’s communication, drop them and look for another one.
Also, the provider should use polite language when communicating with you. They should never use any vulgar language or a lot of jokes. However, they should be friendly but professional.
3- Professional image
You should ask the following questions:
- Does your translation service provider have a website?
- Do they communicate using emails?
- Do they use well-structured invoices?
- Do they answer your calls fast?
A translation provider that does all that is in question stands as a perfect provider.
However, treat translation providers that do not have a website with caution. Also, be on the lookout for providers that send disorganized invoices and quotations. Such providers will never provide high-quality translation services to you.
4- Operation systems
You should check whether your selected translation service provider has the following systems:
- Financial system: the provider should have a proper payment channel and accounting system.
- Compliance system: the provider should hold a valid license.
- Security system: the provider should operate secure online operations to prevent cyber-attacks.
- Record system: the provider should have a sound backup system for their records.
Things to do before translating your documents in Arabic
1- Identify the target audience
Even though there is a standard Arabic dialect, some locations apply different terminologies, cultures, and colloquialism. So, you have to identify the specific audience you want to target and use their dialect during the Arabic translation process.
2- Send all documents
Always ensure that the documents that you hand over for translation have all information that you want. Handing over additional documents disrupts the translation schedule. Also, it can result in additional costs.
3- Have a layout format
You should provide a layout format to your translator. Notably, Arabic translation employs unique desktop publishing requirements. If your translator uses incompatible fonts, they may corrupt the texts.
4- Agree on the final format
If you do not inform your translator about the final format of your documents, they will have to rework the documents and delay their submission. So, always provide your translator with the final layout of your translated documents.
5- Provide a realistic deadline
Any translation process involves hard work. Translators have to take your document through several steps before coming up with the final draft. So, you should provide them with ample time to translate your document. Rushing your translators compromises the quality of your final documents.
After reading the qualities listed above, you are now ready to select the best Arabic translator for your documents.