What are interpreting and translation services?

Both interpreting and translation services are sought-after language services by individuals and corporations alike. The stark differences between them are purpose and means of delivery. While translation is primarily in written form, interpreting or interpretation services are delivered orally.

Interpretation requires a slightly different skill set as the linguist providing it should be not only bilingual but also be able to capture the message conveyed in the source language accurately, sometimes simultaneously. It takes over two years for a professional linguist to train to become an interpreter.

What industry does translation fall under?

Translation services fall under the language services industry, which has seen spectacular growth in the past seven years. According to the Common Sense Advisory Committee (CSA), the language services industry has a market capitalisation of $40 billion. And this value is on the rise, with over 18,500 language services providers (LSPs) worldwide spread across 173 countries.

Making product and services information available in multiple languages increases global reach, considering that over 75% of consumers internationally are more likely to complete a purchase if product/service information is in their native language.

How can you access translation services?

Translation services are accessible online via professional platforms or business listings. Platforms like ProZ, G2, Trustpilot and others are particularly helpful as you can also find reviews of different translation services providers that can help you in your decision-making.

How much do translation services cost?

The cost of translation services varies by domain (e.g., medical, technical, scientific, legal, general, marketing, etc.), length, and urgency. Typically, scientific and certified or legal translations cost more, considering the specificity of the domain and the degree of complexity. Some language services providers may charge an emergency fee for translations delivered within 24 hours or less.

What is the best online translation service?

There are several translation services providers in the UK you can choose from. Depending on the type of translation you need and your language combination, you may choose Translation AZ, Pangea Global, GTE Localize, Lingo24, and others. We recommend you conduct your own research before opting for one provider or another.

Who uses translation services?

Translation services are widely used today by individuals and companies to communicate effectively in another language.

Why do companies need translation services?

Companies use translation services for legal and commercial purposes. For example, a UK company looking to scale overseas will need to translate their corporate documents as well as their website and other marketing collateral into the language of the country and market they wish to penetrate. In this case, the professional translation services they use cover: website translation, document translation, certified translation and other types of official translation services in the UK.

What are the factors determining the cost of translation?

There are several factors determining the cost of translation, including language combination, length, deadline, subject matter, and format. As explained above, technical, medical, legal, and scientific translations are more expensive.

Considering that the cost of translation is calculated per word, the source and target languages are also an important factor to keep in mind. Typically, translations from and to Arabic, Hebrew, Chinese, Japanese, Thai, and others are priced higher than German, French or Spanish translations, for example, given that they use different writing systems, phonematic and phonological rules.

What are the main types of translation?

According to the translation techniques and tools used, there are two main types of translation: machine translation and human translation. Machine translation uses AI and natural language processing (NLP) algorithms to transfer text from one language to another.

However, due to the limited capabilities of these algorithms to “grasp” complex nuances or deeply technical information, human post-editing machine translation (PEMT) is also used to ensure utmost accuracy.

Human translation, on the other hand, is the traditional way of transferring text from one language to another while preserving the meaning and nuance of the source language. Although considerably slower than machine translation, human translation is preferred when more complex materials, such as scientific papers or technical specifications, are involved.

What should you look for in a translation services provider?

When prospecting the translation services market, you will need to look at the type of services they offer: human or machine translation. If their primary focus is on machine translation, then you should also find out if they offer post-editing machine translation.

Other important factors to consider when choosing to outsource your translation projects to an agency include workflows, delivery time, languages they cover, and more. To best determine which translation services agency is best for you, when doing your research, aim to answer the following questions:

  • What are their processes?
  • What languages do they cover?
  • What types of content can they translate?
  • What is their average turnaround time?
  • Can they also deliver translations the same day?
  • What are their rates? Do they charge an emergency fee?