The Process of Applying For Document Translation

Before you apply for document translation services a number of important points need to be considered before the process of document translation begins:

1. You need to establish your targeted language(s) by considering what countries or regions you need translations for. For example, if you want an English to Spanish document translation your translation services will ask you which countries your translations are targeting. This is because there are many parts of the world that speak Spanish and not all of them share exactly the same grammar and terminology.

A few companies target, for example, the American Spanish speaking market using a Spanish translator while other companies use an English to Spanish document translation services to undertake translations into what is termed “Universal Spanish” which focuses on the Spanish speaking market.

2. Put some time into checking your documents before you send them to your chosen translation services. The second pair of eyes will help to iron out any mistakes and ambiguities or even colloquialisms and idiomatic language which may be hard to translate. You don’t want the translation project manager responsible for your translation to return it to you to make changes when you are trying to meet a deadline.

3. Once the document is ready to be sent to your chosen translation services decide on the deadline so that you can get this approved before the translation begins. You have to allow for the fact that most translation services will send you a draft of the translation for you to check before finalising the translation. The number of words you want to be translated will affect the time it takes to complete. For example, a translation of 100,000 words could take at least 9 days for a translator to complete.

This allows for you to look over the draft before the translation is finalized. Most translators create accurate translations of up to 2500 word each day. However, if you require a document to be translated into several languages, this may take a little longer depending on the availability of suitable translators. If the document involves a lot of technical terms you can expect the translator to take a little longer as s/he will want to ensure the translation is completely accurate.

4. Before you apply for document translation services, ask them what the best file format is to use. Once you have agreed you have to ensure you know how to use the file after the translation has been completed.

5. Before the process of the document, translation starts to ensure you write easy to understand instructions for the translator so there is no delay in the translation.

6. Before the translation begins it is useful to create a glossary of your preferred terminology which helps the translation team from the very beginning. This is particularly important if your document contains a lot of technical terms. It speeds up the translation process because the translator does not need to spend time thinking about which terms are the most appropriate. It usually takes quite a bit of discussion before the glossary is compiled and agreed upon by all those involved in the translation process.

Once the glossary is ready the translation can commence and the glossary will be used during the translation. This helps to ensure there is consistency in the use of terminology throughout the translation process. Also, the glossaries created for one translation project can be used for later translations.

7. Before you start the process of document translation you should establish what budget you have for the translation project. Most document translation services offer a rate per word. However, if you stick with the same document translation services the cost will not be so much as the translator will use translation memory with any new translation.

During the process of document translation, the translator will translate the text in the document from the source language to the target language while paying careful attention to the following:

  • the accurate transferring of content;
  • the use of appropriate terminology;
  • ensuring consistency in language including grammar;
  •  accurate spelling and punctuation;
  • appropriate layout and presentation.

8. Proofreading and editing are the final stages of any translation project. When you apply for document translation services you will be told the proofreading will be done by a translator who is equally qualified as the primary translator. The proofreader will check the content to ensure accuracy as well as grammar, syntax and punctuation. Formatting and any graphics or layout modifications are made at the proofreading stage before the finalizing of the translation have taken place and it is sent to you for the final approval.

9. Once you have approved the draft the translation services will issue the final copy of the translation which will be sent by email. A hard copy is usually available as well.

What are Localisation and Globalisation in Relation to Translation?

In many ways today the world shares more than it has ever been able to do in history. People and businesses use smartphones to enable instant to connect while travellers and immigrants cross borders in search of new experiences and improved lives and opportunities. The rise of the internet to a global scale allows information and ideas to be shared in real time. History books and language classes are a thing of the past as virtually everything can be learnt or done online.

Businesses in the world market

The acronym GILT has been created by researchers referring to business activities. It means globalisation, internationalisation, localisation, and translation. Apart from the word “translation” which speaks for itself, what do the other 3 terms mean to businesses?
Localization, globalization, and internationalization appear to resemble one another but they are in fact different concepts. Understanding the difference between localisation and globalisation what the differences are among these three terms helps to make sure that a brand’s product message can have an effect globally.

What exactly is globalisation?

To be clear about it the term “globalisation” means any activity which unites cultures, people, and economies of many countries so as to bring them closer together. In the business sense “globalisation” refers to the practices which organizations use to connect with customers and business partners throughout the world. Amazon and eBay are classic examples of business globalisation as products are easy to purchase from either a business or individual from every corner of the world.

Many favourite consumer electronics are manufactured from raw materials found in India, which are transported to China which makes the electronics which are then transported and sold to countries like the USA. McDonald’s and other fast food chains like KFC and Pizza Hut have marketed their logo, brand and food so aggressively that they have gained enough customers to set up franchises in hundreds of countries throughout the world. The easily recognisable logo “swoosh” belonging to Nike has transcending different languages cultures to become a household name globally. So “globalisation” in business means any activity or process which operates in different overseas markets, from its product design to its marketing.

Consumers and companies both benefit from globalisation as there is a greater variety of consumer goods to choose from at competitive prices and businesses are able to increase their profits by engaging in business in the global market. These have both been fuelled by the rise in the internet and the expansion of fast, international air travel.

What is localization?

Through internationalisation, products are adapted and become user-friendly for customers in many different countries. As soon as internationalisation has taken place, localization commences. The difference between localization and globalisation is that localisation goes a step further as it is the actual process of adopting a good to specific targeted markets following the process of internationalisation. So you cannot call a business a globalised concern unless it has gone through localisation. This is the difference between localisation and globalisation.

McDonald’s as an example of localisation

Many of McDonald’s restaurants set up in Israel sell kosher drink and food and they are not open on the Sabbath or during Jewish holidays. In India McDonald’s has now opened a restaurant which is meat-free because in India people do not consume pork or beef. In both of these two cases, McDonald’s has kept on its brand identity but adapted its services and products to suit local markets. These are clear examples of localisation.

The translation is part of the localisation

Translation and localisation cannot be separated. When products are marketed in a country that does not speak the same language as the marketing company translation is required. This is not just a straightforward word for word translation but the language has to be adapted to suit the culture of the targeted market. This is when the relationship between localisation and translation takes place. When localising a product in a different language, the business has to get some things right. This includes getting:

  • naming conventions right such as the use of last names;
  • telephone number formatting right;
  • correct time and date formats, like MM/DD/YYYY and DD/MM/YYYY;
  • currency both symbol and amount right;
  • the writing direction right which in most languages is left to right but in Arabic and Hebrew it’s right to left and it is vertical in a few Asian languages;
  • the system of measurement right as either metric or imperial;
  • punctuation right like quotation marks which are “in English, low quotes „in German, and guillemets «in the French language;
  • electrical voltages, plugs and frequencies right;
  • legal requirements right.

An example of successful localization

A successfully localised product is purported to be Apple’s Siri virtual assistant. When users request a weather report from Siri or directions on how to get to a certain address, Siri is able to offer the answer in either Celsius or Fahrenheit or miles or kilometres respectively, depending on where the user is located. Users, if they wish, may choose Sri’s voice to be in their preferred accent which includes South African, American or Australian English

So, when considering Localization v/s Globalization or the difference between localization and globalization, localisation goes a step further by adopting a product to suit the culture of the targeted market while performing a culturally relevant translation.

What is the Role of Corporate Translations?

Corporate translations are all about providing corporate translation services for small and large corporations. The reality of business today is that much of it has had to deal with the rapid expansion of the global economy. Any business of any size that fails to respond to the presence and promise of the international market is unlikely to prosper and grow.

An essential factor that arises from this international business perspective is that communication must be effective across a multitude of language barriers. This, in a nutshell, explains the role of company translations. While many larger corporations maintain in-house teams of translators to do all their translations for them, other companies use independent translation agencies that are specialized in providing the business translation.

The breadth of corporate translation services

The main bulk of corporate translation services involve the translation of:

  • accounting documents;
  • business agreements;
  • correspondence;
  • financial documents;
  • insurance documents; and
  • marketing documents.

Varied skills for varied purposes

A lot of corporate translation is highly technical or at least uses highly technical language which means that translation services that provide services for corporations acting in the international arena need to have specialized translators. For example, the translation of business agreements, contracts and deeds require knowledge of legal terminology in the languages involved in the translation.

Marketing documents and websites, on the other hand, require different skills that are more tuned towards cultural nuances and may require specialized localization services.
Similarly, corporate communication can involve the whole gamut of present-day means of communication from formal letters to email correspondence to the use of social media and the maintenance of helplines and technical support by telephone contact and through company websites. None of this would be possible without a diverse corporate translation service, which can adapt to the multitude of translation and language skills involved in business communication.

The most common languages in demand for corporate translations

It would be no secret which languages are in most demand when it comes to corporate translations. These languages are the languages of the most important of the world’s powerhouses: English, German, French, Japanese, Chinese and Russian. Some of the languages owe their popularity as a result of their international importance, such as English and French. Others are important because of the rapid growth in the local economy which has international significance such as Chinese. Others still are popular not so much because of the economic perspective but the sheer numbers of native speakers. Japanese, Hindi, Indonesian / Malay and Arabic spring to mind.

The role of corporate interpreters

Interpreters are as important as translators when it comes to servicing the international communication needs of corporations. These two services are complementary. There are some professional agencies that can provide both translators and interpreters, although generally speaking, they tend to be separate entities. Translators mainly deal with converting text from one language to another, while interpreters are used to converting the spoken word from one language to another.

A business team that is visiting another country where the language is different is going to have to use an interpreting service to help them communicate, even though all the groundwork before the visit was probably helped by translators. Similarly, a company website may be translated into a number of other key languages, but its helpline must be manned by interpreters capable of handling questions in all those different languages.

Corporate translations for the Internet

Much of the business of corporations these days is via the Internet. All companies of any size will have a company website, part of which helps to explain what the company does, its size, history and what it provides in services or products. It may also have a more dynamic interface in which international customers can communicate directly with the company, searching for information, ordering goods, making enquiries and so on.

Many companies also use social media for promotional purposes. New developments, whether these are to do with the expansion of the company’s presence in a particular area or because of a new technological fix, can quickly be communicated by a social media presence. Many professionals and corporate executives these days use their social media presence, e.g. on sites like LinkedIn, for their personal profile. These profiles are avidly examined for promotional and appointment purposes. Because of the internationalisation of much corporate business, this is another area that demands effective translation services.

The Internet is also widely used by corporations these days for conferencing purposes. It saves a lot of money on first-class air flights and accommodation. However, to be effective, an online conference has to be well set up with a multi-language interpreting team and good technology.


Corporations are increasingly international if they are not so already. The meaning of corporate translations is intrinsically tied to the need for effective cross-language communication for modern communications. This demand is not likely to diminish any time soon unless the world adopts one common international language or the international community goes into reverse economically, neither of which seems very likely.

Translation for International Students

One of the most important translations for international students is certified student documents translations. They are crucial when applying for a job overseas, getting a visa, or submitting an application for a university course. Many immigration authorities will only accept certified translated documents before they are accepted as legal documents to study at one of their country’s educational institutions.

There are several documents that will need translations before international students can begin to study in an overseas country. It is important for the university to evaluate international students’ academic credentials so they can decide if the international student has reached the equivalent standard to a local student. Translations are required for the following:

  • school and college certificates;
  • degree and diploma certificates if the course sought is at postgraduate level;
  • academic transcripts showing the previous school or college course content.

A certified translation is a requirement so that every class, grade, course credit and the cumulative grade averages can be properly converted to match the standard of local qualifications.

International Students and the Immigration Process

International students will not be able to enter a country to study unless s/he has been thoroughly vetted by the country’s immigration service. For this to take place translated copies of key documents are requested by most immigration authorities. These include birth certificate, marriage certificate (if applicable), bank statements, police clearance certificate and any other documents you may get asked to translate. The visa application will need to include the offer of a place on a course but this will be in the host country’s language so it will not need a certified translation. Each of the certified translations will typically have a signed certification form attached to each it.

What is a Certified Student Documents Translation for International Students?

A certified student document translation is when an international student is asked to get a translation of documents required both for acceptance on a course by the college/university concerned and for the immigration authority responsible for issuing a study visa for the student. Depending on the country the international student may or may not be required to use a qualified translator to do the certified translations.

In Australia, for example, all translations need to be done by an accredited NAATI translator who has the certificate to prove it. However, in the United States, it is not necessary to get translations done by an accredited translator. All the translator has to do is write a statement for each student documents translation to say the translation is accurate and then sign it. This statement is attached to the specific translation.

International students may also use their certified translations of degrees and other qualifications when submitting applications for employment in the U.S. Some recruiters and human resource managers could ask you for these translated documents in order to confirm that you are both certified and experienced to take up the position you have applied for.

Who Should do International Students Translations?

A student needs the best translator that money can buy so that means using someone who can prove their competence in both the source and target languages. There are many translation services available who offer online human translators who are not only competent translators but can get the job done quickly without the accuracy suffering. Many have certificates to prove their ability to translate. Some have degrees and postgraduate qualifications in their second language. They use their vast experience of translating international students’ documents to get the perfect translation.

If you are unsure whether you have chosen the right translator you can ask to see testimonials that prove the person’s competence. The chosen translator needs experience with translating legal documents such as marriage and birth certificates as well as academic documents like degree and diploma certificates. Speed is important too as you do not want your application to study or your visa application rejected because you are too late. There is always someone ready to take your place.

The Benefits of Learning Italian

How to Learn Italian Fast

Many Italian language experts suggest immersion as the quickest way to fluency and how to learn Italian quickly. The best way to do this is to move to Italy and set yourself up with a host family so you can interact with them in Italian as you will have no other common language. Immersion is the best choice if you can interact in Italian day in and day out. Other options for the easiest way to learn Italian:

  • listen to Italian opera or Italian popular music while in the car;
  • watch Italian movies when at home;
  • sign up for an integrated audio/text online program for at least 10 minutes a day so you can learn the Italian language online;
  • listen carefully when you hear the Italian language being spoken in public;
  • stream Italian tv online to get Italian language basics.

Use all the resources available to learn Italian fast such as audio courses, CD-ROM programs, grammar books, study Italian online, flash cards, traditional college courses and speak to native Italian-speakers as often as possible. If no one in your city or town speaks Italian, it is possible to source an Italian language partner online. You can then communicate by video calling or instant messaging.

One of the well-worn routes to learning Italian is to try and speak the Italian you know so you get to practise it and correct your mistakes as you go along. Making mistakes is not a reason to give up but as long as you are relaxed you will soon get it right. Whatever route you use for the fastest way to learn Italian constant exposure and regular speaking practice puts you on the way to better fluency. You will be proud of your achievements in no time at all.

Job Opportunities for Italian Bilinguals

Here is a List of Potential Jobs for an Italian Bilingual Speaker
  • Italian interpreter;
  • work from home bilingual Italian /English video/ Phone Interpreter. The Italian video/ telephone interpreter takes responsibility for handling phone calls on demand;
  • bilingual (Spanish/Italian) designer for outerwear. Has to be fluent in either Italian or Spanish and has to be able to travel to other countries as required;
  • global language teacher – Spanish/Italian;
  • work-from-home Italian bilingual with English as a customer representative;
  • Expert freelance translator;
  • LAX Airline check-in, customer service agents (Bilingual Italian/English);
  • Spanish / Italian Teacher;
  • bilingual Italian/ English Customer Service Associate;
  • freelance translator/interpreter Italian/Spanish/English.

Benefits of learning Italian

The Italian language in U.S. colleges is the 4th most studied language. There are a number of reasons for this trend to learn Italian as a beginner which include:

  • It is a beautiful language and has a beautiful rhythm and flows quite naturally.
  • Italy is packed with world heritage sites.
  • Italian is the language of music like adagio, cappella, piano, dolce, forte, allegro and Veloce.
  • It is the sought after language for opera singers.
  • It is packed with familiar food words.
  • At least 6% of Americans claim to possess Italian blood.
  • Italian is the closest language to Latin and Latin is the common ancestor of all of the romance languages.
  • Increased career opportunities as Made in Italy is the most sought after brand.
  • It is the language of romance and love.
  • Italy is a favourite tourist destination.

Language learners in general experience a personality shift when they learn a new language like Italian. As you become more competent in the language there is more of a tendency to take on the personality traits of the native speaker of that language. If the language attracts a more outgoing personality then as you learn the language you could become more outgoing yourself. Italian tends to involve more use of hand gestures than some other languages so this tendency can spread to the new Italian language speaker.

It has been the downfall of some new Italian speakers as they have become known for breaking expensive items in a house as they gesticulate wildly with their arms without thinking about what could be in the way. In many ways, this is beneficial as it shows the new Italian speaker knows how to fit into the context of the new language. This is often key to a foreigner’s acceptance in another country with another language.