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5 Common excuses not to hire a translator

5 Common excuses not to hire a translator

People can be quite creative when it comes to explaining why they do not want to hire a professional translator for the translation of company (or even legal) documents. When you start doing business with another country, however, translating your information into the language of that specific country usually becomes non-negotiable.

We tend to think that English is spoken and understood by people all around the world, but this is far from the truth. Below you will find the five most common excuses not to work with professional translators.

1. Translators are expensive

When you try to save money by having someone who is more or less proficient in a language translate documents, this involves some risks. The ‘translation’ may be far from perfect and you may lose valuable time. Consider that reworking a bad translation takes time, and costs money and effort. Add all of this up and translating will indeed become expensive!

2. People understand English

English is a very important language in that is spoken worldwide. However, there is a large part of the world population that does not (frequently) speak it and has no intention of doing it in the near future. Translate your documents into the language of your target group. That will bring you closer to your markets abroad and work wonders for your company image. Moreover, research proves that people all over the world tend to buy more from companies that address them in their mother tongue*. Both increasing globalisation and internet coverage call for more high-quality translations, act accordingly.

3. Our on-line translation engine has it covered

Even if it is true that on-line translation software is getting better, an engine that delivers a perfect translation is yet to be developed. For now, only humans can translate accurately. On-line tools fail to understand the complexity of a specific language and the language’s underlying culture. On-line engine translations are usually literal translations that lack grammatical accuracy.

4. I know a bit of language X so I’ll take care of it

The fact that people understand you during your holiday abroad does not mean that you are proficient enough to translate a business document. A translator knows both the source and target languages and their grammatical rules and they have the writing skills needed to leave you with a professional, well-written text. Translators usually also have specific fields of expertise, so they are familiar with the specific terminology you tend to find in legal or other specialised texts.

5. I can’t judge the accuracy of the translation, so thanks - but no, thanks

Your client does know the difference between a good and a bad translation. And if you are not willing to go the extra mile for them, why would they do it for you? If you cannot judge the quality of the translation, find someone who can. This may be one of your colleagues in the target country (provided that they speak the target language). If you do not have local colleagues, work with a renowned translation agency. At Presence we have several translation modes whereby translations can be proofread by the client or by a second, independent and specialised mother tongue speaker. You will receive a flawless translation that will hit the mark with your audience and increase their satisfaction with your company.

In a nutshell: the only good reason not to have your documents translated by a professional is that you are not planning to do business abroad. Let us join you on your trip around the world, and we will leave your mark wherever you take us.

Do you want to know more about our writing and translation services? We are just a call away.

Jelle De Leeuw
+31 6 46 92 80 08

* source: “Can’t read, won’t buy” Common Sense Advisory – 2014