The year is 2020 and we have translation software’s being introduced into the market and many of them to say the least. So, how exactly do you decide a particular software is the best for you? There are specific features that must be available to make your translation software 100% effective and efficient. On this article we look at some of the features that you need to look out for in translation software’s before you decide to use them for your translations.
- Translation Editing Tools
Another feature that is of most importance when getting a translation software, is the translation editing tools. Normally software translations are not accurate and for you to make them accurate, you need to be able to edit them and work on them by yourself. Being able to edit your translation is a vital part of translation but only if you are looking for incredibly accurate translations for your documents. If accuracy is not what you are looking for then you can for go this particular feature. Also depending on the technicality of the texts you are translating, the more technical they are the more you will need an editing tool so that you can proofread and edit the original draft.
- File Translation Tool
One thing you need to know is that you will meet different file formats that will need to be translated in your line of work. This doesn’t happen once in a while but reality is that you will always work with different file formats and you should get a software that is compatible with all the file formats you might want to translate. There is nothing as bad as investing in an expensive software then it ends up not being useful to you. Depending on what file formats you constantly work with, you should be able to get a translation software that supports those particular file formats.
- Copy & Paste Translation
Any kind of work that you need to work with documents, needs a copy and paste feature and in the case of translation works, you need a software that has a copy and paste translation feature. There are times where translators work on files that don’t really need any copy and pasting. There are also instances where they have to work on translations for specific parts of a document. This might be an email, instant message or a paragraph on a text from a website or any digital platform. This is where the copy and paste feature comes in handy. You need to be able to copy and paste the extract so that you can work on it individually instead of having to rewrite it before you translate it. This feature saves translators a lot of time and it is very effective.
- Translation Memory
A software that has a translation memory feature is one that is absolutely a game changer for anyone who uses it. This is a feature that learns the words, statements and generally the vocabulary that is constantly used for your translations. This means that every single time you use the software for your translation works, the translation memory works on the background by suggesting different terms that would best suit the documents you are working on and also auto corrects if you end up using a term that is not contextual. It automatically stores your translations as segments in a bilingual repository which then helps you in any future translations. This means that you won’t have to translate a particular word twice as long as the language pair is the same as your previous translations of the same word. This feature is important for service providers who do translations for industries which have a particular jargon. This might be Medical, Legal, Finance and any other technical industry translation.
- Ample Language Pairs
Compatibility with language pairs is one of the features that you should always look out for every time you decide to get into the market for a translation software. When we talk about language pairs, we mean the two languages that translators work with when doing translations. They can also be referred to as source language and target language. A source language is the language you translating from while target language is the language you are translating to. You should always have a general idea on what language pairs you will be working with and the get a software which is compatible with those language pairs. A good example would be if your pair languages are French, English and Spanish, you should get a software that is compatible with all the languages. It is very easy to get a software that say it can translate French to English but it wouldn’t necessarily translate French to Spanish. Be sure to get one
Translation is a form of writing and when using a software, it is very easy to come across texts that will need to be spell checked and proofread for corrections. Spellcheck should be a standard feature in any translation software. I believe for a software to at least have a certain level of accuracy on the first draft spellchecker has to be in place. This will also save you a lot of time that you would have used going through the texts to ensure all the words are correctly spelt and just deal with the accuracy of the translations and grammatical errors.
- Translation Collaboration
When getting a translation software for professional use, it is important to get one that has the collaboration feature. This means that the software should be in a position where it supports team collaboration. Normally in a professional set up, translations are done by a number of translators so that a project can be completed in the shortest time possible. Bilingual employees are often used to produce translations in global organizations. This means that you’ll need to be able to easily share translations and request editing from within the app interface. Be sure to get a software that supports this, it makes work really efficient for translators.
- Automatic File Formatting
Just like how I mentioned in the point above that getting a software that is compatible with different files is important, getting one with an automatic file formatting program is also important. In 2020 a lot of people are translating digital files and getting a software that is automatically able to help in formatting the translated files for you is such a breath of fresh air. This means that the software will be able to encode your image placements, font properties, spacing and paragraphs breaks and make sure it retains the original file’s properties. This is an amazing feature because it saves you so much time that you would use formatting your files by yourself.
- Translation Tracking
On the point above we have mentioned that a collaboration feature is of great importance when it comes to professional translations. This should also be backed up by a tracking feature. When working on different translations with a couple of other translators, one should be able to track how far the other has gone and so on. The tracking feature is what makes this bearable and worthwhile. You won’t have to deal with constant calling and texting to enquire on where a translator has reached and vice versa. With this you also able to view the edited segments and any form of action taken on a particular translation project.
- Live Human Support
Any translation that doesn’t offer live human support is one that I wouldn’t advice anyone to use. Live human support is of absolute importance because from time to time you will need it and it should be at your request. A software should be able to make work way easier and efficient for you and without live human support, that will be hard. These translation software’s are usually really expensive and if you must use so much to get access to them the least the software provider should do is make live human support available. Technical assistance from time to time will really come in handy and that is exactly what live human support guarantees.
Have you ever wondered why there is usually a clause for terms and conditions whenever you deal with any digital products? This is to ensure that the company provider doesn’t reserve the right to use your data in ways that your company disapproves of. This is why getting a software that is confidential is very important. It ensures that the confidentiality of your data is ensured and not compromised with through sharing, indexing or publishing it.
- Robust API Access
We are living at a time where companies love to integrate their software systems with each other so that they can work efficiently to their benefit. If your company falls under this category, having a robust API access for your software is really important. Before you decide to get a professional translation software, be sure that it gives an option of accessing its API and also allows you to make API calls.
Security is a key thing when it comes to software’s, not only translation software’s but all software’s in general. A great software is one that comes with a high standard of security which ensures that anything you use the software for is protected and secured. It is important to know that any company that uploads its data into any software is at risk of a data breach. Be sure that your software has two-step authentication, encrypted file storage, SSL certification and PCI-compliant payment processing.
- Voice-Over Translation
A translation software that is able to do a text to speech translation is one that is of absolute importance. This kind of a software comes in handy in instances where you want your texts to be translated into speech in order to serve different purposes for your organization. A lot of people say that it is easy to grasp something when you can hear it than when you read it. This means that you will be able to get your texts in audio format which further means that you save your money seeing that you won’t have to hire a voice talent to offer you voice over services. If having your files in an audio format is something that is important then getting a software that supports this should be key.
- Compliance with Specific Mandates
Depending on what industry you line of work is, you should ensure to get a software that is compliant with the specific mandates and laws of that industry. This may include GDPR (EU General Data Protection Regulation), HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act), or SOX (Sarbanes Oxley). Ensuring that this is available is of great importance so that you can ensure that your documents will follow all the possible rules and mandates.
Moving forward, you are in a position to find a great translation software for your business while putting all this information to consideration. It will definitely come in handy in helping you get a great software.