Language Translation: There is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all solution
Posted on February 12, 2014 by Chris
It is easy to assume that if someone knows two languages they’ll be able to translate anything between the two.
After all if someone speaks Greek and English, surely they’ll be able to tell you what different words mean in each of the languages. Whilst this might be true for general conversations and documents, that is not the case at all if you have something that is a little more serious or important that you need translating.
If you’re looking at business documents, medical papers, contracts, financial agreements etc. then it stands to reason that you are going to want someone who knows what they are talking about to translate these for you. After all, just because someone is a copywriter that doesn’t mean that they can draw up a set of terms and conditions for you.
Language translation should be taken just as seriously as the thought that goes behind creating the original document. If you’re looking for a financial contract to be drawn up, you’ll probably hire someone different than you would if you were getting medical documents written. That is because different industries use different terminologies that you need to be comfortable with in order to use them correctly. If these are going to be translated accurately then you’ll need someone who knows what they are talking about.
If you look online you’ll see hundreds of examples where companies have used basic translating services to translate things such as advertising campaigns (the infamous “Pepsi will bring your ancestors back from the grave” for example) which just goes to show further that you really need to have someone on board that knows what they are talking about.
The good news is that there are specialist translators available in every industry. You just need to make sure that when you are looking for translators you check their credentials to make sure that they can do what you need.
Of course there are plenty of general translators that you can use, which are often good enough if you just need something roughly translated. For example if there is a document you would like to make sense of and a rough translation would do. However if you’re looking for something a little more comprehensive and accurate then a one-size-fits-all approach is not the best way to go about this.