Our Process: Translation Tools & Technology
LanguageWorks continually improves its effectiveness and efficiency through carefully considered workflow processes and investments in both general and industry-specific technology, along with the development of proprietary utilities designed to optimize the integration of our work with that of our clients.
We provide personalized attention and listen carefully to your business objectives in order to analyze, identify and formulate consistently reliable, cost-effective solutions, using tools and technology customized to meet the foreign-language requirements of your business.
- A Look Into How It's Done
Our time-tested workflow has been shaped by nearly two decades of experience and is certified to meet ISO 9001:2008 quality standards. Each certified translation is the product of a multi-step collaborative process involving a minimum of three professional linguists — a translator, editor and proofreader — each one with relevant subject-matter expertise. And that’s only the beginning: our process includes additional quality checkpoints as project parameters expand to include foreign-language page layout, or the conversion of websites into multiple languages.
In our quest for continuous improvement, we consistently evaluate, refine and re-tune our methods in order to integrate new technologies and provide real-world solutions vis-à-vis the ever-changing needs of our clientele.
Our expert team of localization engineers assists with the implementation of Translation Memory solutions on nearly every project we take on. A Translation Memory is effectively a language database, and each phrase or sentence (“segment”) within your source content — say, an English document supplied to us for translation — is paired one-for-one with the corresponding segment in a foreign language (e.g.. the Spanish translation of that same phrase or sentence). When the segment appears multiple times within a document, or the segment appears as part of a new document, the Translation Memory database instantly recalls the previously approved translation. These reusable segments, known as “100% matches” and “repeated text,” typically require in-context proofreading, thus eliminating the need for our professional linguistic teams to retranslate the same segment multiple times.
By using this software on all projects for every client, we develop large libraries of approved translations that can be reused on new projects, thereby cutting costs, minimizing turnaround times, and maximizing consistent terminology usage across every business line within your organization. LanguageWorks implements Translation Memory software and maintains Translation Memory databases free-of-charge for our clients.
Many of the projects we take on are provided to us in a source file that is either highly formatted — such as QuarkXPress or InDesign files — or that contains tags, as in XML or HTML files. For each of these complex file formats, we must separate all formatting elements and code from text, a process called “text extraction.” If text is extracted properly, then all material requiring translation will be compatible with Translation Memory software, and ready to be worked on in standard word processing applications (such as MS Word) by our teams of professional linguists.
Accurate text extraction is critical to our workflow, whether it be indentifying and isolating small amounts of source copy among complex and fragile web code, or removing text from PDF files. At the same time, we must preserve all the formatting elements, so that once translations are completed, foreign-language text could be reinserted into the source code, and the localized versions of documents would have the same appearance as the English original.
LanguageWorks has developed proprietary filters, macros and plug-ins to accelerate the text-extraction process, while optimizing compatibility with Translation Memory software, and automating the reinsertion of translated text into the original file format. When working with markup languages, we utilize custom-built code-validation software designed to ensure the integrity of source tags post-localization. To facilitate collaboration with clients, copy from any file format may be filtered into an intermediary application (usually MS Word or Excel) for ease of use by internal review teams.
LanguageWorks has developed a proprietary Project Management System that connects clients to a wealth of resources, all of which are essential to the translation and localization process. Top-level translators and editors from across the globe, the best desktop publishing specialists and localization engineers, Translation Memory databases, glossaries, style guides and other client assets — all are seamlessly integrated via this system. Also accessible is the entire body of work executed for each and every client, along with new project requisition forms and project tracking data. Files from a project completed years ago, invoices, quotes and customized reports are all at your fingertips.
LanguageWorks provides turnkey solutions when it comes to converting websites, intranets, e-commerce engines, and other web-based portals into foreign languages. In addition to meeting language and coding specifications, we will ensure that all graphic elements (images, dropdown menus, and navigation bars) will be appropriately translated, and that the entire site will function correctly.
Pre-Processing (File Preparation) and Style Guide Creation
After the project plan is devised through consultation with clients, we will begin by extracting content and putting it into a suitable format for translator/editor teams, as well as one compatible with Translation Memory software. In addition, we will create and implement, with the approval of our client’s internal reviewers, glossaries of terms and a style guides for use by our linguistic teams, specifying any possible character-length issues (i.e., in graphic images, navigation bars, etc.), capitalization and title case requirements, and the proper use of acronyms and other client-specific terminology.
Translation, Editing, Proofreading and Client Review
Content will then be translated according to our ISO-certified process, at all times using Translation Memory software to minimize costs and ensure consistency. Upon completion of all internal steps, final translations will be submitted for client review. Once LanguageWorks receives comments, style guides, glossaries, and Translation Memory databases are updated to reflect the terminology which has been approved and which should be used on future projects.
Images, dropdown menus, and navigation bars may contain translatable text, and our production team will work with you to establish precisely which ones require translation. Static images may be executed in such programs as PhotoShop or Illustrator, while animated content may require localization of Flash or GIF files. This portion of the project is completed by our professional page layout specialists, who have broad experience handling foreign-language formatting.
Post-Processing / Code Quality Assurance
After all translations and graphic components have been approved and finalized, we will reinsert all material into the source files, at which time all source code and tags will be reapplied. Because this process is highly automated, using sophisticated tools, a round of code Quality Assurance is essential to ensure the integrity of source tags post-localization.
In-Context Review and Testing
Once the localized files have been reassembled and delivered to the client (either on a staging server or Content Management System), we will perform a round of testing to determine whether the text is displaying properly, the application is working once uploaded and, most importantly, that the text is appropriate in context. After the implementation of a Test Plan and any necessary corrections, the foreign-language site(s) will be ready to launch.
Our Desktop Publishing professionals rank among the most experienced in the industry. Each and every project we undertake includes consultation, to ensure that we are working with your goals and branding requirements in mind.
Performed at a project`s outset to confirm that LanguageWorks has all the materials (fonts, artwork, brand guidelines, templates) needed to successfully convert your layouts into foreign languages in a culturally-appropriate manner.
Multilingual Typesetting and More
We advise you on image search and replacement, font selection solutions and attributes, text expansion and contraction, tracking, leading, kerning, reorientation of the layout for right-to-left reading languages such as Arabic and Hebrew, and the creation of PDFs with embedded fonts and fillable fields and/or those for the visually impaired.
Our team is ready to work in the software, version and platform (PC or MAC) of your choice, be it QuarkXPress or any and all graphics programs within the Adobe Creative Suite. Need to migrate from one software application to another? We can help.
Once the copy has been typeset, the layouts then undergo a minimum of two rounds of Quality Assurance: linguistic review, in which a professional linguist checks the language integrity and grammatically-correct insertion of content, and graphic proofreading, during which we check that all text is in the proper position, and that all formatting specifications (e.g. bold versus italic type, appropriate spacing/layout configuration, etc) have been applied.
Our Client Zone is a proprietary web-based portal that enables clients to access account information at any time, from anywhere. The Client Zone contains robust functionality allowing users to view the progress of their translation and localization projects, as well as to submit new projects, quickly access past work, track quotations and invoices, and generate customized reports.
Perfect for centralizing enterprise-wide language requirements, the Client Zone serves as an online requisition area for the many individuals within your organization that may require translation services. This portal is highly-customizable — we can tailor field names, user privileges and functionality to meet your specific needs.