What is the Role of Corporate Translations?
Last updated: June 10th, 2019 by admin
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;
- 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.