10/12/2021

How to Handle Queries Efficiently During a Translation Project

Communication is key. That’s a solid rule most of us know is a good idea. That being said, in the hustle and bustle of a big translation project it can be easy to let good communication habits slip. But when clients, project managers, and linguistic teams all need to stay on the same page, it is especially important to facilitate organized and effective communication between the translators and the client. This is where “query sheets” come in.

When working on a project with multiple collaborators, you may come across a query sheet. Essentially, a query sheet is a centralized place where those working on complex projects can organize questions and comments from all parties involved in the project.

Multiple people can collaborate in a query sheet, which can make it easy to get disorganized. Here are a few tips for managing queries efficiently and effectively:

1. Keep it Digital

Choosing to use a virtual tool that multiple users can access from anywhere at any time, that makes global updates (aka there is one draft that updates whenever anyone makes a change) is a super important element needed to make sure a query sheet stays up to date and functioning. Google Sheets is a good example of a digital tool you can utilize to build a query sheet. Because it’s saved in the “cloud” you don’t have to worry about a computer crashing and losing work or someone accidentally deleting the document off their computer. With web-based spreadsheets like Google Sheets, you can see changes to the spreadsheet automatically happening in real-time. Keeping things digital is also a great way to avoid the hassle of saving, downloading, and emailing documents again and again every time an update is made.

2. Encourage Collaboration

One of the main benefits of a query sheet is how collaborative they are. If you’re working on projects with multiple linguists across several languages, it is important that everyone is able to read all notes and take any questions or answers shared with the group into account. A high level of collaboration can not only help provide clarity, but can streamline operations. If a translator sees a question has already been asked and answered in the query sheet, they won’t need to ask the same question again. Make it clear that you want everyone on your team to utilize this resource and to create a collaborative dialogue about the project. 

If the scope of the project involves translators speaking multiple languages, it can be wise to avoid creating different sheets for different languages as tempting as that may be. Doing so will lessen the collaborative approach that makes a query sheet so valuable. 

3. Question Carefully

When using a query sheet, it’s important to keep in mind the intention of the document, which is to ask questions. Each query included in the document should be structured in a clear and concise way. That way, clients or other teammates can easily answer these questions in a productive fashion. Adding notes like “this sentence isn’t translatable” doesn’t pose a solvable question or present a possible solution. It would be better to say, “this sentence isn’t translatable in the target language for x reason, can we transcreate and say y instead?”. It’s okay if the question posed only needs a yes or no answer, simplicity can get the job done. 

It’s also helpful to think carefully before adding a question to the query sheet. While we would like to say there is no such thing as a stupid question, there are questions that will be a burden to a queery sheet and not a productive addition. 

Before asking a question, consider the following solutions:

  • Did I research this issue thoroughly?
  • Does the client’s style guide provide an answer?
  • Is the answer in the project instructions?

It’s always better to ask a client a question if you’re unsure of their answer before playing the guessing game. But if you can find the answer on your own first, that’s even better.

01/12/2021

Pros & Cons: In-House Translators vs. Freelance Translators

Whether you crave the stability of a nine to five or like to hit the road and let the world be your office, you may find working as a linguist or translator suits your needs. While some benefit more strongly from being in-house or working as a freelancer, there are some pretty solid pros for translators considering either option. Of course, there are a few downsides we’ll cover too, but let’s try to keep things positive!

In-House Translators

Working as an in-house translator is probably a bit easier to picture for most as many have held full-time in-house positions before. 

Pros

  • Fixed income. One of the main perks of working in-house is the income stability it provides. You know exactly how much money you’re going to earn each year and have consistent paychecks coming in. You’ll also qualify for unemployment in the event you do lose your job, which can be trickier for freelancers to obtain. 
  • Benefits. In-house employees typically have access to benefits that freelancers don’t such as healthcare, retirement, paid vacation, and more. 
  • Convenience. When you work in-house, there is no need to worry about the logistics of running a freelance business. There are other employees that will handle things like accounting, marketing, and looking for new clients.
  • Teamwork. You can rely on a team of peers to help you complete big projects. There’s no need to wear all the hats, which freelancers often have to do. When you need to take time off, ideally there will be someone there to cover your workload. And if you need help with a tricky project, you should have teammates you can lean on. You can learn from each other and grow together. 
  • Professional development. Typically in-house employees receive valuable training from those who are further along in their careers. Many companies invest in employee professional development on an ongoing basis. The company may offer to send you to conferences, to pay for educational resources, and to train you in new skillsets.

Cons

  • Less flexibility. Some in-house employees may have to work in a specific office each day at an agreed upon schedule. Not to mention, there are dress codes and other office rules to worry about. That being said, while most in-house translators used to work in a company office, nowadays it’s very common for them to work from home.
  • Cap on earnings. While working in-house provides stability, in many ways you have less control over your earnings. Freelancers have lows, but they can also have major highs. 
  • Less autonomy. When in-house, you typically have to do as you’re told. You may have little control over what types of projects you work on and might have to follow company protocols.

Freelance Translators

If you haven’t worked as a freelancer before, it can be hard to picture what that career path looks like. There are some major benefits of freelancing worth considering, but there are also some downsides that not everyone is ready to handle. 

Pros

  • Ultimate flexibility. Want to work by the seaside today and in a mountain cabin tomorrow? No problem. Are you a night owl who does your best work when everyone else is asleep? Good for you. Don’t like a client or aren’t interested in certain types of projects? Send them packing. As a freelancer you’ll be able to decide when and where you work, who you work with, and what your vacation schedule looks like. 
  • You’re the boss. Freelancing is essentially running a very small business of one. You’re a business owner, even if it doesn’t look like it from the outside, which means you get to do things your way. 
  • Earning potential. Freelancers get a bad rap as being “underemployed” at times, but many freelancers can tell you that when you’re retaining the whole profit from a project (and your company isn’t taking a cut) that your income can soar. You get to set your rates and can choose to only take on projects that work for your budget. 

Cons

  • Stability not guaranteed. Working as a freelancer provides a lot of excitement and the wins can feel really big since they’re all your own, but a stable income is not guaranteed. This can be challenging for people on a tight budget or who have a family to support. 
  • No benefits. You’ll have to purchase your own benefits and accept that there is no such things as a paid vacation anymore. It’s important to remember to aim to make more than you would in-house in order to pay for benefits yourself. 
  • Loneliness. Working as a freelancer can be lonely at times. If no one else in your household works from home or if you live alone, you may find you have a lot of solitude on your hands. The lack of teamwork can also feel very isolating. 
  • Out of pocket expenses. Office supplies, computers, and professional development will all have to come out of your pocket which can sting a bit.

The Takeaway

There is no “better” option here. Both in-house and freelance translators have some major perks to look forward to. At Terra, we employ in-house linguists as well as collaborate with freelancers. So whatever your preferences are, we can work together. The key is to find which is the best fit for your goals, personality, and lifestyle!

18/11/2021

How to Create an Effective Culturalization Strategy

We live in a very large world and part of what makes it so beautiful is how different we all are. Understanding and embracing these differences can bring us much closer together. As we’ve discussed recently, culturalization is a translation process that can help content thrive in a new target market by taking that market’s unique culture into account. If you’ve decided to enact a culturalization strategy for your next translation project (good choice!), then there are a few things you should keep in mind. Primarily, you should be aware of the differences between proactive and reactive culturalization and how they can affect your strategy. 

Proactive Culturalization

A proactive culturalization strategy focuses on creating content that customers in a new market will gain a lot out of because the content is geared towards their culture. Oftentimes, culturalization is used to create stronger creative content that is more likely to thrive in a new market. With movies, this may involve changing a character’s name, the title of the movie, and some jokes or references made throughout. Here are a few examples of how a proactive culturalization strategy can come into play.

  • Music. Most people have strong cultural and emotional ties to music, so adjusting the music to appeal to a specific culture can instantly make content feel more personalized. 
  • Local references. Food, clothing, decor, and architecture can all vary greatly from culture to culture. In content like video games, it is possible to make changes in these areas, which can make the world feel more immersive for the player. 
  • Monetization. Yes, even money comes into play here. For example, when making in-app purchases, some cultures prefer to use gift cards over credit cards. Certain cultures struggle more financially than others and may require a different pricing model to be successful. Taking how money works into account can make it easier to obtain more sales. 

Reactive Culturalization

A reactive culturalization strategy focuses on making sure that the content being released in a new culture doesn’t cause offense or harm local sensibilities. When planning a reactive culturalization strategy, you’ll essentially be auditing content to see where cultural pitfalls may be waiting. If you offend a target market with your product, not only will the success of your product be compromised, but you risk tarnishing your brand name in that culture or having to do an expensive recall in order to smooth things over. 

A reactive culturalization content audit will typically focus on the following areas:

  • Religious sentiments, especially if the religion in question doesn’t believe in their religious figures or literature being featured in entertainment content. 
  • Historical references that some cultures have different views on or that can upset a large group of people. 
  • Political references that are divisive. 
  • Small cultural preferences that may come off as rude, condescending, insensitive, or discriminatory. 

Next Steps

Which approach should you take? Well, that depends entirely on the type of content you are taking to the new market. If it’s a highly creative style of content, whose purpose is to engage the audience, then we suggest you go the extra mile and be proactive about taking culturalization steps. That way, you can ensure that the consumer really connects with your content. On the other hand, if the purpose of the material is not completely dependent on the target audience that is engaging with it, then it’s okay to simply be aware of any content elements that could potentially be perceived as offensive and plan to do something about it to prevent any backlash.

10/11/2021

Let’s Talk about Feedback

In a way, feedback is an intrinsic part of any business relationship, as people always give and receive comments about their work or the work of others. Most frequently, feedback is tacit, brief or spontaneous, such as indifference, a continued relationship, a smiley face, or a positive remark. However, it can also be an organized and intentional strategy within an organization. Specifically, in the localization industry, feedback is mostly associated with vendors (translators, editors, DTP specialists, voice talents, etc.) as it relates to their performance in localization projects. Here we’ll talk about that, but also other ways in which feedback sustains language service providers’ (LSP) workflows.

The Importance of Feedback

According to ISO 17100 and to the Project Management Institute standards, feedback is a cornerstone when developing a quality management approach in localization workflows. This is because an intentional communication strategy supports a continued learning experience for all the parties involved, which results in development and growth in the long term. Furthermore, managing feedback is one of the bricks that build a risk management structure. The reason for this is that feedback reduces uncertainties and, hence, risks. For instance, knowing what the client needs or prefers, counting on vendors that know your preferences and policies, being PMs aware of all the requirements and background, are all actions based on feedback that reduce risks and potential setbacks.

Therefore being this valuable, it’s not safe to wait for feedback to just happen. Parties involved in a project should actively put together actions or protocols that incorporate providing feedback, as well as ask for it and encourage it.

One Way or Another

Just as it’s important to provide feedback on growth opportunities for the linguistic team, vendors also need to be able to provide their own insight. Workflows can have resources or steps that enable their expert suggestions to reach PMs or even clients when needed. Query sheets, meetings with language leads or feedback loops are some examples of the actions that empower translators to be part of the wider process.

Lines, Loops, Scaffolds

When the intention is to deliberately manage a feedback strategy, it’s very important for PMs to encourage clients to provide it even after a project has ended. With this approach, the team can identify improvement opportunities and take actions to remedy them in the next endeavor.

However, feedback loops or scaffolds are also a way of handling a feedback protocol. This means that, for example, the editors provide feedback to the translators during the course of a project. Likewise, translators can respond to that feedback, which enriches the editing process. This is also helpful because translators and editors may have complementary expertise. Let’s say, for example, that within a project, translators are domain subject specialists, but they don’t know the product the team is localizing, while editors do. Feedback strategies combine and leverage that knowledge through exchange and teamwork.

The loop or scaffold metaphor also applies to the relationship between PMs, language leads, and clients when time and resources allow it. Through a partial deliveries schedule, regular meetings, or forms and surveys, for instance, the team can know how a project is going, what clients expect, what adjustments need to be made for next deliveries, etc. This is crucial information that only feedback can provide, and that supports a solid approach based on quality and risk management that nurtures any localization workflow.

20/10/2021

The Importance of the Localization of Online Tools

As the pandemic forced countless workers to make the shift from their usual office to virtual home offices at a moment’s notice, many online tools emerged to meet the demands of a newly remote workforce. These online tools became invaluable for many different industries and communities, especially for students and teachers across all education levels. 

Even before the pandemic changed how we live and work, people from around the world were constantly looking for tools to help streamline their processes. Companies that can provide user-friendly and intuitive tools that workers can start using without previous knowledge or training, will have a leg up when it comes to marketing and selling their products. One way to achieve this is by localizing online tools into a variety of languages. 

Let’s look at a few different ways that you can make yours stand out and how the localization of online tools can come into play. 

Taking Advantage of Helpful Features

Many workplaces rely on communication tools to keep their teams connected from a distance. These tools include valuable features that can help users collaborate on projects, stay organized, and communicate easier. However, if these features are not accessible in a language the user speaks, there’s a chance they can only guess what the feature does or how it can be used. 

Slack is one company that understands the importance of the localization of online tools. They elaborated on their experience introducing new languages to Slack and explained that they don’t just translate the language used in their tools directly, but take regional needs into account. 

Helping Users Work Faster

Users running into a language barrier is one of the easiest ways to slow down their workflow. Many virtual tools allow users to do great work and do it faster. It’s a shame more people can’t take advantage of them because of a language barrier. By providing users with tools in their native language, these apps have the potential to reach more users, increase their revenue, and provide a better experience to their existing customer base, that may be just using the tool as best as they can. When companies invest in localization, they make their tools more effective for their customers, which can increase their use of the tool and their brand loyalty. 

How to Provide Multilingual Customer Support

To take your tools to the next level, offering multilingual customer support can ensure that the majority of your customers have access to the help they need to get the most out of your online tools. While integrating multilingual customer support sounds overwhelming and expensive, it doesn’t have to be. Customer support solutions such as chatbots, working with a translator to conduct customer support over email, and translating key resources (such as help documentation, FAQ web pages, and knowledge bases), are all affordable ways to incorporate multilingual customer support.

13/10/2021

Localize, Test, Review: About LQA and PLR Services

The various texts, products or materials that Language Service Providers (LSP) process every day always have important functions in their context: users read, listen or share them in real situations of life. Because of this relevance, the localization industry has defined steps and tools to ensure that the outputs LSPs deliver integrate neatly in their context of use, while being accurate and legible. The two more common solutions for this purpose are Linguistic Quality Assurance (LQA) and Post Layout Review (PLR).

Both LQA and PLR are steps that assess the quality of localized texts formatted as they will be presented to users. Basically, they consist in a linguistic review to check that in the process of formatting and embedding text into websites, apps or videos, for instance, no error has been skipped nor introduced. In addition, LQA and PLR are the final proofing phase, where reviewers flag missed grammar, punctuation or spelling mistakes.

Format and Quality: PLR

Post Layout Review, also called Post Layout Linguistic Proofreading (PLLP), refers to the linguistic review of a document after desktop publishing services (DTP). Given that DTP specialists are not linguists, they may introduce involuntary errors, or fail to catch them. In the PLR step, a reviewer (a linguist of the project or another) searches for omissions, spacing and alignment errors, misspelled or overlapping text, readability, etc. If something needs improvement, reviewers leave concise and clear comments of what needs to be changed and the file goes back to DTP.

However, not only formatted documents need PLR. The revision of voice over tracks, subtitled videos or e-learning courses, for example, is also crucial:

  • Voice-Over: PLR ensures the voice-over artists followed the script and that the audio is clearly comprehensible. It also assesses synchronicity of music, sound effects and voice, and any other technical requirement, if needed.
  • Subtitling: PLR checks the synchronicity and layout of the text on the screen, plus flagging any linguistic error.
  • E-Learning: PLR checks if on-screen text layout displays correctly and without overlapping or missing text, translation and recreation of non-editable text and images, synchronicity of audio and slides, well-function of buttons, links, quizzes and interactive elements, etc.

Testing Review: LQA

Essentially, Linguistic Quality Assurance is an umbrella term that refers to different quality assurance services carried out once the translation or localization step has ended. Generally, LQA implies the review of localized software, websites or applications. A proofreader scans and navigates them to ensure that formatting and user interface look neatly, and that buttons and links perform correctly. 

Furthermore, LQA may sometimes refer to other quality assurance services, such as the following:

  • Subject expert review
  • Third-party review
  • Standardized linguistic review

However, as the localization industry grows global and diverse, it’s not unusual to see that sometimes the terms PLR and LQA are used interchangeably. Either way, they both refer to a review that assesses a final localization output, in what will be its context of use and distribution.

Planning First

Quality assurance steps translate into more quality, but they also require allocating time and resources. So, when considering adding quality assurance steps to a localization workflow—like PLR, LQA or back translation, for instance—Project Managers first consider budget and time frames in compliance with client’s needs. Once decided, they design a well-planned project schedule that allows performing all the steps the project requires.

06/10/2021

Transcription Services: The Value and Applications

While video content may be all the rage on social media these days, in the world of business, text still reigns supreme. Because of this, transcription services are often combined with other services like translation and subtitling. Transcription services translate live or recorded (such as an audio or video file) speech into text. It’s common for businesses to utilize transcription services to create records of important information and doing so can lead to reduced overhead, improved business efficiency, and less stress for employees.

Why are transcription services useful?

As mentioned, there are quite a few benefits associated with transcription. Let’s take a closer look at them.

  1. Saves time. It’s typically much more time consuming to listen to audio than it is to read an equivalent amount of text. When you have the written form of an audio file it’s easier to quickly consume the content and to make notes. 
  2. Avoid disputes. Mixed messages can cause a lot of problems, especially in business meetings. Having written documentation of meetings and events can help avoid disputes, as that text is accessible when clarification is needed. 
  3. Searchable content. When looking for information quickly, technology makes it possible to search text almost instantaneously. 
  4. Boost SEO strategy. When you add text to your businesses website instead of or in addition to audio, you can reap the benefits of SEO (search engine optimization), making it easier for potential customers to discover your business online. 
  5. Fulfill legal requirements. Depending on the industry, having a professional transcription may be necessary to fulfill legal requirements. 

Who needs transcription services?

Speaking of the industries that lean on transcription services, almost any business across any industry can benefit from the perks. However, some industries lean on these services more than others do. 

  • Medical. The ability to efficiently record and store patient information such as notes regarding treatment, patient conversations, and medical history is key. 
  • Legal. From court hearings to depositions to client interviews to research, there is no shortage of a need for transcription services in the legal field. 
  • Education. Savvy college professors who want to document their lectures, presentations, or research, can use transcription services to their advantage.  
  • Market research. Any field that requires a lot of research can use transcription services to stay organized and efficient. This is especially true in the market research industry where they gather a large amount of quantitative and qualitative data.
  • Public companies. Because the quarterly meetings and investor conferences of public companies have to be transcribed and made available for public access, these services are vital. 

There are many different types of transcription services that are executed in different ways. The purpose of the transcription will determine which type you need, whether you need timestamps, or if the text needs to be turned into subtitles, amongst other considerations. A qualified transcriptionist can help you determine what your needs are and how to best deliver the text.


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17/09/2021

Content Localization Strategy: Where Should I Start?

Localization allows you to take your content and not only adapt it to the language needs of a new target market, but to their cultural needs as well. When localization is taken into account, content can be more effective, relatable, enjoyable, and has less potential to cause offense. For businesses who see the value of content localization, but don’t know where to get started, there are three easy steps you can follow to start building a content localization strategy. 

Step 1. Choose Your Target Market and Language

In some cases, choosing a target market and language to start with might be simple. You may only have one new market on your list. But larger businesses that are planning a massive global distribution of their product or content may need to narrow down their focus while they create a content localization strategy that they’re happy with.

In this case, a company should begin with their strongest markets where they already have an audience established. That way, they can focus on growing this audience instead of starting from scratch. Understanding your top performing markets can help you narrow your focus. Depending on how large and diverse your target market is, you may need to plan different localization strategies that account for a variety of languages spoken and regional differences. For example, in the midwest of America the word “pop” is used commonly, whereas on the west coast the word “soda” is used to refer to the same type of fizzy beverage. If your target market is extremely large, there is the potential to use content localization to really narrow your focus and cater your content and services to a very niche target market. 

Step 2. Choose Content to Localize

While you will likely want to localize all of your content when launching in a new market, you need to choose where to get started. You can localize everything from mobile apps, to video subtitles, to ad copy. When choosing where to begin, you should start with your top-performing content. Whatever content has performed best at engaging with your audience and is getting the most attention is where you should focus most of your efforts.  

If after looking at your best performing content, you’re still unsure of where to start, you can leverage international SEO (search engine optimization) insights. You can use SEO as a tool to learn more about what type of content people are searching for in your target market and can discover which parts of your content will be most relevant to them. 

Step 3. Choose the Right Translator

During any content localization project, choosing the right translator is of the utmost importance. You’ll want to work with a translator that is not only deeply familiar with the target language, but the target culture. Hiring a native translator can provide valuable insight to a localization project, as oftentimes native translators have the best insight into what makes their culture tick. The right translator will also help you create a solid content localization process that grows and improves over time. They can create a database of any cultural nuances, local industry jargon, and market-specific phrases that you’ll need to keep in mind for future localization projects in that market.

The Takeaway: Prioritize Content Localization Smartly

Remember, it’s important to narrow your focus when creating a content localization strategy. At the end of the day, localizing every last bit of content you create might not be possible (at least not in the immediate future). This is why it can be so helpful to prioritize which content will get the most out of content localization. Determining your key target markets, choosing the right content, and finding a great team, can all help you create a content localization strategy that will help you reach your goals.  

09/09/2021

What is a Translation Glossary and Why Do You Need One?

Translation glossaries act as an index of a company’s approved translations for specific words, in both the source and target language. In short, a translation glossary is extremely helpful for ensuring language consistency and accuracy across multiple projects. Let’s break down everything you need to know about what translation glossaries are, how one can benefit you, and how to use one.

What is a Translation Glossary?

A translation glossary can come in a few forms, but serves the same purpose, to help eliminate any uncertainty in the translation process, while increasing consistency and decreasing the amount of time and money it takes to complete a translation project. 

Translation glossaries vary greatly and can be very sophisticated or they can be nice and simple. A spreadsheet that tracks terms can do the trick to start. This spreadsheet can then later become a termbase that integrates with CAT tools. This is when translation glossaries are their most useful, as translators don’t have to keep searching for terms, they just pop up in the CAT tool when they appear in a text segment.

What are the Benefits of Having a Translation Glossary?

There are a few benefits associated with translation glossaries that shouldn’t be overlooked. 

1. More productivity. Translation glossaries can help streamline the translation process, as the translator won’t have to spend time researching to find the equivalent of terms that are already included in the translation glossary. This productivity boost trickles down to the editing phases as less reworking is needed because the right terms have already been chosen and there is a high level of consistency. 

2. Reduced costs. Not only will the client receive the finished product more quickly, but they’ll save money too as they won’t need to send the text back to the translator if they realize they prefer other terminology than those chosen by the translator. They can also avoid the costs associated with incorrect terminology usage in critical documents (like medical or legal) that can have negative repercussions.

3. Brand consistency. No matter what type of project you’re working on, a brand should aim for consistency across all channels and communication methods. This creates a better customer experience and cuts down on confusion. Using a translation glossary can help ensure consistency across all projects.

What Should Be in a Translation Glossary?

The answer to this question depends on each company’s unique needs, but generally translation glossaries house specific terminology and their approved translations in a target language. Names, acronyms, and trademark terms may also find a place in a translation glossary. These glossaries are especially common in technical fields with niche terminology like medical, manufacturing, or legal industries. 

How Do I Maintain a Translation Glossary?

A translation glossary should be treated as a living document that is always evolving. After the initial build, you should update it with new phrases that help reflect your company’s latest preferences. This should include any “non-translatable” words that you would prefer to keep in their original language, which may be the case with product names. Adding these terms to the glossary can be especially helpful when working with a new translator who isn’t super familiar with your company preferences.

28/07/2021

Risk Management in Localization: Managing Resources, Budget and Uncertainties

The concept of managing a localization project may seem simple: receive a work order, consider requirements and budget, and then allocate the resources. However, the process involves so many people and factors that analysis, planning and, also, risk management are mandatory actions for a translation team.

Sometimes, risk management is an overlooked subject, but it’s crucial in any workflow. Project Managers, Account Managers and Quality Assurance Managers, instinctively or not, all acknowledge that some situations may pose more risks than others (e.g. a very tight deadline), and they take actions to mitigate them. Risk management is the process of managing intentionally and systematically the uncertainties that may occur during the course of a project.

Definitions and Types

Risk management implies dealing proactively with uncertainties before they happen. Technically, reacting to a risk after it occurred is not risk management. Identifying and foreseeing possible setbacks allow leaders and managers to come up with the best strategies and solutions to increase the likelihood of project success.

But what is a risk? According to the Project Management Institute, risks are uncertain events that can have a positive or negative effect on at least one project objective. There are different types of risks:

  • Technical Risks, which are related to the technical aspects of a project, like requirements, software or quality.
  • External Risks, which depend on agents that are not under the scope of the organization, like vendors, suppliers, market fluctuations or natural disasters.
  • Organizational Risks, which are related to the way a team organizes its workflows and operations.
  • Project Management Risks, those related to the potential setbacks regarding estimating, planning, communicating and/or controlling the course of a project.

A Proactive Framework

A systematic understanding of the processes managers are involved in nurtures the framework that strongly supports the daily operations within an organization. Part of this background are the actions that can mitigate and reduce projects’ risks. It’s important to point out that risk management is an integral approach that not only involves Project Managers, but rather the entire organization.

Typically, risk management implies three main actions. First, managers identify risks and assess the likelihood and potential damage of each, which helps them prioritize and address the most relevant ones. Once these steps are done, the team puts together a plan to respond to the identified risks.

Being aware of the types of risks and the possible scenarios where they emerge, and having a proactive approach to them, is an integral part of the job of any translation team. The more systematic and organized the commitment to risk management is, the more successful and experience-driven any localization workflow will be.