How to hire a translator: 5 factors to consider to find your perfect match in a translator

“Missing pieces do more than complete the puzzle, they fill in an empty space.”, Luanne Rice

How to hire a translator: 5 factors to consider to find your perfect match in a translator

When it comes to deciding whether or not to hire a translator, people often wonder

  • How do I find a translator for my translation project?
  • What can a translator do for me?
  • Do I really need to hire a translator?
  • How much are translators’ fees?

So, take some time to consider the following points when you are looking for a translator who will be the perfect match for you and your project.

1. IDENTIFY YOUR GOALS

Before you even start with searching for a translator, it is important that you define the goals for your translation project. Once you identify your goals, it will be easier for you to find a translator.

Some typical goals may include:

  • Growing your revenue
  • Increasing sales to existing clients
  • Meeting customers’ expectations
  • Complying with laws
  • Protecting your brand reputation
  • Ensuring security of products and users
  • Supporting and communicating efficiently with your clients
  • Growing profitability and visibility
  • Increasing customer service
  • Introducing new products and services
  • Growing your clients’ base
  • Having satisfied end-users

2. SEARCH FOR A TRANSLATOR

A translator is a highly-specialised professional trained in the art and science of ensuring communication between speakers of different languages by rendering one language into another in a written format.

Where can you find them?

Web searches and word of mouth are common way to look for translators.

Professional associations are great sources to find professional and specialised translators. They verify the relevant qualifications and professional experience of its members, promote the continuing professional development of translators and have set down codes of professional ethics and conduct for their members to follow.

In any case, it is always better to research your potential translator thoroughly and make sure that he/she is the best fit for you and your project.

Most importantly, search for a translator with experience in your industry sector.

Having completed prior work in your sector ensures that the translator understands specialised terminology, regulations, requirements and nuisances of the texts but also all the steps involved in your project. This experience will ultimately help streamline the work, resulting in better communication and lower costs.

3. ORGANISE INFORMATION

Once you have found a few candidates you can contact them. But first organise your thoughts and key information about your project.

Here is a list of some things you should prepare and know before you email the translators:

  • The text(s) to be translated, or at least a sample of them
  • Format of the document(s)
  • Estimated starting and delivery dates
  • End-use of the translation
  • Target audience of the translation
  • Requirements for the style and/or terminology of the translation
  • Requirements for the layout of the translation
  • Budget

4. DEFINE YOUR BUDGET

Each project is unique and the specifications differ based on many factors. But cost is, and will always be, an important factor for both parties.

My advice here is to understand the tasks involved in the process of translation. This can give you an idea of the time needed and can help you estimate the cost.

Then be upfront with the professional with your budget and your expectations and expect the same from the translator. This opens the communication and gives both parties the opportunity to find a win-win solution.

5. BE CLEAR

Communication is the key to complete a project well and being able to communicate freely and openly is vital to the success of your project. You should share a clear understanding of your goals and project with your translator and feel completely comfortable.

Make sure you choose a translator who treats you as a priority and is truly invested in your project, whether big or small. If you find someone who creates clear lines of communications and wants the best for you and your project, there is no reason not to expect great results.

Once you have taken the time to consider all the factors, hiring a translator should be a smooth process.

Have you recently hired a translator? If so, what was your experience like?

"Missing pieces do more than complete the puzzle, they fill in an empty space.", Luanne Rice