Let’s say you have a small or medium-sized law practice, or you’re a banker who serves foreign nationals, or you are a small exporter. You’ve realized the power that professional translation and localization can have on the growth of your business, and you’re ready to hire an agency. Would you know where to start? Would you know which questions to ask? If not, these five steps will help you choose the right one:

  1. Evaluate all documents
    • Remember that not everything needs to be translated. By sorting and organizing documents, you can save time and money. Immigration attorneys: pay close attention to this step. Evaluating your documents ahead of time can help you tremendously when court deadlines are right around the corner.
  1. Identify your due date
    • Before you contact translation providers, identify the due date for which you’d like to have your documents or website content translated. This not only helps the agency prioritize your request, but when you have a reasonable due date in mind, you can avoid rush fees.
  1. Do your research
    • There is nothing like word of mouth and online research. Before creating a list of potential translation agencies and especially before hiring one, ask for references. Check referrals and past work, especially for larger projects. Cost-effective is not always the best route to go because in the long run, the money you save now can be spent rectifying mistakes. If your documents must be filed in court, the agency you hire must be able to provide certified translation. By “certified translation,” we mean high-quality, professional translation that is accompanied by a signed and notarized statement stating that the translation is an accurate and complete reproduction of the original document.
  1. Request a quote
    • Step 3: Do your research. Check! Once this is checked off your list, request a quote from a few agencies and be very specific about your needs. The agencies to keep on your list are those that are transparent about pricing, timetables, etc.
  1. Be prepared to share relevant information
    • When requesting any service from a company, it’s best to provide as many details as possible. Details help company teams assist you in the best way possible. Translation agencies are no different. Share details such as purpose, due dates etc. with the agency, so that its teams have a clear idea of what to do.

Finally, a good agency should work with your interests in mind and help save you money by suggesting ways to cut down on translation costs. A question we often ask our clients is: do you really need those 150 pages translated? Often it’s not necessary, and a summary translation will suit your purposes while saving you money.

TransForma can help you with your language needs, so that you can focus on serving your clients and growing your practice or business. Contact us, and we’ll be happy to assist you.