As experts point out, the core competence of translation agencies is not the translation that is delivered by the translator, but project management, vendor management and consulting.
These three core tasks represent clear added value for the customer when they decide to work with an agency. Vendor management and project management are also given a central role by DIN EN ISO 17100 for the requirements of high-quality translation services.
The standard determines the necessary qualifications for internal and external employees. For example, translators should have a university degree in the field of translation or, alternatively, a university degree in another field if they have two years of professional translation experience or five years of full-time professional translation experience. The qualifications of the translators must be documented and verifiable for customers and auditors at all times.
Agencies should conclude contracts with their translators that clarify the general conditions of freelance cooperation and the duty of confidentiality. Translators should receive an order for each project, which clearly presents all the details of the project as well as an exact description of the service and expected quality, even if they are preferred translators and are familiar with the customer and the products.
The qualification of the translators should be supplemented by their specialist skills. In order to take stock of the available resources, the customers of C+P were initially analysed and divided into more than 40 technical areas. The special aspect here is that it is not just about general specialist areas such as mechanical engineering or medical technology, but precise specialist areas that exactly reflect the products of the customers.
The text types to be translated were also determined:
These often correspond to the translator’s training. Linking our customers’ orders to the jobs completed by translators made it possible to create an accurate profile for all preferred translators. This system should also be transferred to new translators, with the aim of finding a perfect match between customer requirements and specialist translators. In order to reliably link such complex data while meeting the high demands for IT security, C+P decided to develop its own database.
Filing of all necessary documents from the translators
Analysis of customer specialist areas and text types
Creation of a translator database
Linking of translator expertise and customer requirements
Commissioning using the database, continuous quality controls
Without foregoing its own experience and proven quality standards, C+P exploits the advantages of standard-based vendor management. The translators checked and approved in the Vendor Management system are commissioned via the C+P database. This information is accessible to all project managers and their representatives can react faster and more reliably to customer inquiries. Each order contains extremely precise information for the translator on the language pair, the tool, scope, delivery date, possible terminology specifications, quality controls and contact persons for any questions.
It is easy to follow the development of the cooperation with the translators and to establish the subject areas of their expertise. During holiday periods, a second preferred translator can deputise so that there are no delays. For larger projects that a single translator cannot handle, C+P assembles teams of translators who work in a shared translation memory.
We are always pleased when our translators let us know that they are satisfied with their cooperation with C+P for you as our customer. We know many translators personally and follow their careers. Several translators have been working continuously with C+P for more than 20 years. We call that service for you as a customer and cooperation within C+P.