Centralising translation work: sense or nonsense?

Centralising translation work: sense or nonsense?

There are so many agencies offering translating services all around the globe that it is hard for multinationals to decide at the headquarters which one is legitimate and fit to handle their translation work. The decision is thus cascaded down to the local level, where colleagues in target markets can find the best language service provider for the job at hand. Sounds like a pretty straightforward and logical thing to do, doesn’t it?

And yet it isn’t, not really. Because what happens is that very often this selection process ends up with different people at the local level, who have different preferences and contacts in their respective networks. At the end of the day, the multinational ends up with a wide variety of translating agencies across its geographies. Spoilt for choice, you say? May be, but definitely also craving for consistency.

While every company has to decide for itself what the best way is in terms of vendor selection and management, there are some clear advantages to working with one partner when it comes to written translations (and you may want to add interpretation to that as well).


We hinted at this in the introduction, but however good the translator is, a source text will never be translated in exactly the same way by two different translators. Every translator has their own language stamp and has some favourite wording or phrases. And while both translators may deliver a linguistically and stylistically perfect translation, there will be slight differences in the translations. Multiply this by the number of agencies you work with, and you end up with countless versions of the same source text and enough inconsistencies to leave your target group doubting on whether the messages come from one and the same company.

Choosing one language service provider for your multilingual communication is probably the best way to make sure that what you say and write as a company is conveyed consistently and correctly across languages.


Every company knows that volume and cost are are interlinked. When you negotiate with an agency, your bargaining power increases significantly as the volume of work you offer is greater. More source texts equal lower rates and attractive discounts. With every word you add, your investment will make more sense.


You are the best at what you do. Whether you are selling products or services, you are the expert on their characteristics and application. Translating agencies are specialised in multilingual communications, and are used to dealing with the language aspect of doing business across geographies. When you work with one provider, and establish a relationship with them over time, they will be in the position to advise you on the best solution in terms of multilingual communication. Is your communication objective best met by a ‘traditional’ translation of the source text, or is it better to work with a briefing and have a writer draft a new text in the target language? Developing a relationship with your translation partner will allow both of you to do a better job and to co-create campaigns that truly hit the mark.

Do you want to streamline your translation process and consistently connect with your target audiences abroad? Pick our brains, and we will help you spread your message.

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