Translation entails communication of the meaning of one language into the other. It involves converting written text from a source to target language through writing. One may confuse translation and interpretation! While the former deals with the conversion of written texts, the latter involves the conversion of spoken words from one language to another. Both are crucial for any organization.
Things to know about translations.
Translation, editing, and proofreading are inseparable; at first, your written text may be translated from its source language to a target language by a translator who isn’t a native of the target language. In this case, make sure you find another translator, a native of the target language, to do the editing process. But if you happen to have a native of the target language, translating your copy from its source language, then you have won the battle. He/she will edit and finally proofread before delivery.
Time is of value in Translation; when a client needs work to be done, he/she needs it like now. Therefore a professional translator would value this. But important to note is, any work done in a rush bears a risk of many minor errors. A translator should be assigned the work on time, so, he/she plans well and produces a decently translated copy.
Do not mix translation and interpretation; as stated in the introduction, in translation, a translator uses writing to convert a source language to a target language while in interpretation oral communication is key. You need to be clear whether you need a translation or an interpretation service. This helps you to get a right person to work for you. A translator!
Non-disclosure in translation is a key; a professional translator is one who is capable of keeping confidentiality with clients. He/she understands that disclosing a client’s work to a third party without the client’s permission is a sin and means shaming the translation industry. My advice is, go for someone whom you believe and from whom confidentiality is 100% guaranteed.
Being a native of a target language is important; a translator may be fluent in a target language and you may trust him/her to handle your work. That’s fine. But being just fluent in a target language isn’t enough. Give your work to someone who is native of a target language, and you will save time and money.
Bonus tip; get translation memory. It’s a Computer Assisted Translation (CAT) tool. The tool stores translation assignments and it may be useful when working on future translation projects. At times, you may want to translate a document that is closely related to one stored in the translation memory. This will save money and you avoid the hustle of restarting the whole translation process.
It’s obvious you cannot translate your own work, or give it to a relative to translate for you because they are fluent in the target language. Only professionals can handle a translation assignment with utmost accuracy, bearing in mind the combination of the six traits above.
I’m personally a Tanzanian by birth and a native Swahili speaker. What if I help you with your English to Swahili translation needs? Swahili is a lingua franca of Africa, and Tanzania is its land of origin. Contact me today, and I will be happy to serve you. Check out also my Fiverr gig, I will provide you with professional English to Swahili translation.