Frequently Asked Questions: Translation Services
Below you’ll find answers to some of our most frequently asked questions. If you do not find the answers you’re looking for, please contact us and we’ll get you the information you need.
What’s the difference between translation and interpreting?
Translation refers to the written language, whereas interpreting refers to the spoken language. Both are independent disciplines requiring skill and expertise.
Translators and interpreters render meaning from one language (known as the source) into another (the target). Both disciplines must convey the original intent of a message, taking into account cultural as well as linguistic differences.
Simultaneous interpreting requires that the interpreter listen and render the dialogue in the target language at nearly the same time as the speaker. In consecutive interpreting, the interpreter speaks after the source language speaker has stopped talking. Interpreting can be performed face-to-face or remotely by telephone or video.
What is localization?
Localization is the process of adapting content to a distinct locale or market. In addition to translation, localization may also entail:
- Adapting layout, graphics, and images to the preferences of the target market.
- Converting to local date, time, and measurement conventions.
- Adjusting design and layout to display translated text properly.
The goal of localization is to give content the look and feel of having been created specifically for a target market, no matter the language, cultural preferences, or location.
What industries benefit from translation services?
We live in a linguistically diverse world. Organizations across a wide range of industries need to communicate with their global client bases, manage international workforces, and engage diverse local communities. Our clients run the gamut—leading financial services companies, educational and healthcare institutions, creative firms, and law offices. We partner with major museums and cultural institutions, along with local government agencies, nonprofits, and NGOs. No matter the industry, Eriksen brings tried-and-true processes, a strong team, and expert linguists to deliver authentic translations that convey each client’s unique voice.
Who performs the translations?
Eriksen works with an extensive network of independently contracted linguists. Our translators are native speakers of the target language (the language they are translating into) and have impeccable skills in the source language. They also have in-depth knowledge about the subject being translated.
Eriksen has a comprehensive procedure to evaluate our linguists, to identify those who clearly and consistently demonstrate excellent translation skills and subject-matter expertise. Individual performance is evaluated on an ongoing basis and with every new project to ensure consistent quality.
What are your most commonly translated languages?
Eriksen works in 100+ languages. Some of our most requested languages are Spanish, Chinese, French, Japanese, Polish, Korean, Russian, Brazilian Portuguese, Turkish, Arabic, Italian, German, Haitian Creole, Bengali, Dutch, Vietnamese, Urdu, and Yiddish.
Does Eriksen handle specialized or technical translations?
Yes. We understand that when dealing with complex or technical subject matter, content should always be translated by a subject-matter expert—someone who knows a particular field inside and out.
This applies to a range of content types:
- Financial, legal, or medical materials
- Instructions for the proper usage of equipment or electronics
- Exhibition didactics for science, history, or art museums
- Documentation used to describe critical, complex, or specialized procedures
- Materials that use terminology not understood by the public at large
- Translation for industries subject to strict regulation
Do you offer certified translations?
Yes, Eriksen offers certified translations. A translation certification may be required for academic, immigration, legal, or government purposes. Upon request, we will provide a notarized statement on company letterhead attesting that, to the best of our knowledge, your document is a true, accurate, and complete translation from the source into the target language.
How do you ensure quality translations?
We follow an established process that implements checks and balances to ensure that our translations are accurate, consistent, and adhere to each client’s brand voice.
First, the text is translated by a qualified linguist. Then, it is edited by a second translator who fine-tunes the translation and double-checks for accuracy. Next, a third language professional performs quality control to make sure the final product conforms to all project specifications. This three-step process holds each linguist accountable for producing high-quality work every single time.
We also understand that the caliber of our linguists has a direct impact on the quality of the final translation. We find that monitoring linguist performance on an ongoing basis helps ensure top-notch translations.
How do you ensure consistency across content?
Glossaries and style guides are valuable tools that help ensure translations maintain a consistent brand, style, and voice across content.
Translation memory (TM) tools are used by translation providers to ensure quality and consistency in terminology, phrasing, and style. A translation memory is a database that stores text as it’s translated, so if you reuse the same combination of words, the software alerts the translator so they can use the same translation. Your translation memory will be leveraged against future projects to maintain consistent tone and phrasing. It is especially useful on large projects that require multiple translators as it ensures everyone will be using the same language.
A translation memory is not ideal for all types of work, but it’s great for content that is repetitive or technical. A translation memory can even save you money, by allowing us to offer discounts on repeated segments.
A glossary is a database that compiles a company’s key terminology in the source language and the approved translations for those terms in the target language(s) to help translators ensure that defined key terms are used correctly each time they appear.
Eriksen regularly develops glossaries and other linguistic assets for our clients. These meticulously maintained assets and tools, including TM databases, glossaries, style guides, and brand guides, are designed to assist translators and projects managers with regard to terminology, style, and tone across all target languages.
How much does translation cost?
Translation costs are calculated based on the number of words to be translated, and the language that you are translating into. Additional factors may include content type, turnaround time, and specific project requirements. Services such as typesetting and graphics localization are charged on an hourly basis and quoted based on our analysis of your files. To get started, visit our request-a-quote page, and we will provide you with a free quote.
How long will my translation take?
Multiple factors influence the amount of time a translation project requires. Timelines factor in wordcount and language pairs, along with the size and complexity of a project. Turnaround times for typesetting are calculated on a per-project basis, depending on the complexity of the work and the number of languages required.
Be upfront about deadlines from the start, so we can allocate appropriate resources and plan a schedule that will deliver high-quality results while adhering to your deadlines. Please get in touch to discuss your requirements. We know that timing is everything and will do our best to accommodate.
Will my information be kept safe and confidential?
We execute legally binding agreements with all of our employees and contractors that cover confidentiality and the appropriate use of client data. Our staff receives data security training, treats all documentation as highly confidential, and employs all appropriate measures to safeguard sensitive information.
Eriksen employs stringent information security protocols and takes all reasonable steps to secure our clients’ data through the use of technology, controls, and auditable policies. We continually monitor and enforce these policies and adapt our controls as necessary to minimize any possibility of data being sent outside of our established environments.