Why Digital Transformation Should Be Your Top Localization Strategy

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Why Digital Transformation Should Be Your Top Localization Strategy

By Calvin Scharffs, VP Marketing, Lingotek
Reprinted from an article originally published on Mad Marketer

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Still using a flip phone? Of course not. By now, you’ve realized the benefits of having a smartphone--it’s a camera, it’s a computer, and it’s your connection to the digital world. Enterprises large and small all understand the importance of upgrading to the latest technology. It’s critical to stay relevant and remain competitive in the digital age.

Yet, even though translation technology has evolved dramatically over the last ten years, many companies have localization groups and language services providers (LSP) that are still using old-school, outdated, offline processes like emailing and downloading files for translation.

Digitalization drives financial growth. Agile, corporate enterprises know that digital transformation is critical if they want to keep pace. Localization also drives financial growth. Recent studies and industry trends are finding many compelling reasons for prioritizing digitalizing localization. In its recent report, “Global Website Assessment Index 2016,” Common Sense Advisory research found “a strong correlation between a brand’s financial strength and the number of languages it makes its website available in.” In its 2012 report, The Impact of App Translations, Distimo said “There is a clear and demonstrable link between localization and higher numbers of downloads and revenue generated in the targeted markets.”

It just makes sense--if digital transformation is recognized as important to your bottom line, and localization is tied to greater revenue--that translation should be a critical part of your digital transformation strategy.

But there is a collective blind spot--Enterprises are failing to recognize the importance of digital capability when it comes to translation services providers. Emailing is old school. The cloud is the present and future of translation. You don’t use old tech when it comes to telephones and computers, so why continue using LSPs who use old, offline practices, like emailing and downloading files?

Emailing translations means they’re already out of date by the time they hit your inbox.

Using email to manage translation is like climbing a set of stairs. Cloud-based translation Software as a Service (SaaS) is a revolving door. Stairs require one step at a time, as does offline translation.

Emailing translations means they’re already out of date by the time they hit your inbox. It’s a static, sequential process that can’t keep up with the need for dynamic global content, let alone constant changes and updates to that multilingual information. Cloud-based translation is continuous. It doesn’t stop because your company, LSP, or translator lives in different time zones. Continuous, cloud-based translation happens around the clock. That’s why it’s faster and more efficient.

The latest translation technology gives companies robust computer-assisted translation (CAT) tools that can improve the speed and efficiency of translation. Features like in-context review, translation memory, glossaries, and style guides, enable both around-the-clock translation and collaboration. Automated workflows and notifications keep projects moving forward without the delays and black holes that can occur when sending, downloading and waiting for files or communication via email.

With a cloud-based translation management system (TMS), in-country translators and reviewers can be immediately notified when projects become available for translation or review. This optimizes the entire workflow process and saves valuable time. Real-time translation status reporting helps project managers stay on top of their deadlines and pace their work. At a glance, they know if a project or document is behind schedule. From historical reports to real-time dashboards, project managers that use cloud-based translation have a wealth of information at their fingertips for making informed decisions.

Cloud-based translation improves quality and collaboration.

Top cloud-based translation technology gives LSPs real-time in-context review (ICR). This powerful workbench tool brings translation, formatting, and review together in real time and in one place.

Cloud-based translation that lets linguists work collaboratively on the same document at the same time is one of the most advanced tools for streamlining the translation process. Translators and reviewers can see one another’s edits in real time, see segment-specific notes, and chat online with each other through the TMS workbench feature. This type of instant collaboration not only ensures a better quality translation, it also saves time.

Translation memory (TM) stored in the cloud is managed in one place, making newly-created TM immediately accessible to other projects and translators. There is no need to email TM databases back and forth, or merge disparate TM files after the project has already finished. TM that is stored in the cloud lets linguists share it as soon as it’s created. With older, outdated systems, TM is stored offline and can’t be shared until the LSP emails it back.

Having your corporate information downloaded onto an unknown number of LSP servers is a security nightmare.

When your localization teams and LSPs email files back and forth, your proprietary corporate information is at risk. You have no idea who has your information or the number of servers on which your information is downloaded. Content that is translated using cloud technology is fully secure and remains in your corporate control. Single sign-on (SSO) authentication and role-based authorization capability ensures that users only see information to which they’ve been granted access. Cloud-based translation technology is better than email when it comes to protecting your data from all-too-common cyber security threats.

Using email to manage translation is slow, inefficient, and simply outdated. It’s the technological equivalent of using an old flip phone. Digital enterprises need agility to enter new markets faster and to engage more customers globally. Your LSPs and linguists need to undergo a digital transformation and embrace the translation technology tools of future.


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