Interpretation and translation are two closely related linguistic disciplines. Yet they are rarely performed by the same people. The difference in skills, training, aptitude, and even language knowledge are so substantial that few people can do both successfully on a professional level.
Translation deals with the written word. Translators work with written text(s) to change the writing into the target language. The key skills of the translator are the ability to understand the source language and the culture of the country where the text originated. By using a good library of dictionaries and reference materials, the translation piece is clearly and accurately put into the target language. In other words, while the linguistic and cultural skills are still critical, the most important mark of a good translator is the ability to write well in the target language.
Interpretation refers to oral or spoken word. Interpreters listen to words spoken and change them into the target language orally. Interpreters have to possess excellent public speaking skills and the intellectual capacity to instantly transform idioms, colloquialisms and other culturally-specific references into analogous statements that the target audience will understand. An interpreter has to be able to interpret in both directions on the spot, without using dictionaries or other supplemental reference materials. Interpreters must have extraordinary listening abilities, especially for simultaneous interpreting.
2. Does Para-Plus charge for translation project quotes?
No, translation quotes / estimates are provided free of charge if an electronic or faxed copy of the document is submitted. Once the document is received, Para-Plus will analyze the file to prepare a proper cost assessment, estimate turnaround times and determine any other factors which may affect the translation process. To send files, go to Request a Quote for Translation.
3. How can I become a translator?
If you are interested in becoming an interpreter or translator, you need to have a strong command in several languages or at least a pair of languages. If you are looking ahead to make interpreting or translating a career, we highly recommend pursuing further education in interpretation and language skills development. Please check the Resources to the right for additional information on becoming an interpreter.
4. How can I work for Para-Plus Translations, Inc.?
Please visit Are you a Linguist?
5. Are your translators qualified?
Para-Plus’ dedicated database of linguists includes only those candidates who meet the highest recruitment translation and interpretation standards. As a certified corporate member with the American Translators Association, Para-Plus abides by the highest possible standards of service and professionalism set for our industry.
Para-Plus believes that the first and essential step in its quality control process is the careful selection of linguists. As such, all translators, editors and proofreaders must meet the following minimum experience requirements:
Excellent networking abilities enable Para-Plus vendor managers and recruiters to assemble a pool of highly professional linguists. Our recruiters work daily answering requests from linguists all over the world wishing to be considered as part of the Para-Plus team.
6. Why do I need to work with a professional translator?
The cost of an inaccurate translation could not only cost money (due to lawsuits, re-processing of translations, etc.) but also time and other resources. Professional translators will have the necessary experience and training to ensure that your translation is done correctly, saving you the angst and worry that a poor translation can provide.
When choosing a translator, his or her expert knowledge of the subject matter is equally as important as their translation experience. Someone without proper education and technical training is not likely to read and understand certain types of documents or relay information within a specific industry set. Simply knowing the language is not sufficient; the linguist must know the subject matter of translation and be able to communicate in a culturally-sensitive manner. Para-Plus linguists are native speakers possessing exceptional bilingual or multilingual proficiency and excellent linguistic skills. These professionals are highly qualified and educated within their respective language pairs and specializations. Often, they are field professionals in their areas of specialization and can hold additional credentials such as engineer, medicine, law, and education degrees, just to name a few.
7. How many languages do you provide?
At Para-Plus Translations, we offer a full range of translation services in over 100 languages. A language list can be sent to you upon request.
8. What is the cost / pricing structure for translation services?
Translation costs are assessed on a case-by-case basis. Some of the factors involved with quoting translation projects are document volume, language(s) requested, subject matter technicality, turnaround time and specialized formatting of files.
9. Do you charge for canceling translation assignments?
In the event that a client decides to cancel a project, Para-Plus will immediately stop the translation process. The client will be billed for any work done up to the point of cancellation.
10. How long does the translation process typically take?
There are several factors involved in determining how long a translation will take and official turnaround times will be determined during the time of the project assessment. Below are some general guidelines on determining approximate translation times for assignments. Turnaround times are not exact, but apply to documentation processed for translation, editing, and proofreading service (does not include specialized service such as desktop publishing (DTP), transcription, or rush translation services).
|Sample Turnaround Time Tables: Document Size||Standardized Translation Times|
|1-5 pages||1-3 business days|
|5-15 pages||3-5 business days|
|15-25 pages||5-7 business days|
|25-35 pages||7-10 business days|
|35+ pages||10+ days|
11. What types of documents do you translate?
Para-Plus can translate a wide array of documents; from a simple birth certificate to a complex science patent. We have extensive experience in the legal, medical and educational sectors; translating legal complaints, discovery documents, recorded statements, medical records, IEP reports among many others. We also provide translations for marketing material, financial institutions and for companies in the technical fields. With our large pool of qualified linguists, we have the ability to translate a wide variety of subject matters.
Para-Plus project managers are experts at managing multi-language translation projects for public, private and non-profit organizations. The Para-Plus professional teams of linguists utilize their extensive knowledge and skills to provide expert translation services to clients who disseminate information to state residents, visitors, and foreign markets in languages other than English. Please request a quote for your document.
12. Where do I send my documents to be translated?
Please visit Request a Quote. If you want to move forward, documents can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org. Once the documents have been received, a member of our translation department will contact you to discuss the project and cost in greater detail.
13. How do I receive the documents once they are translated into the target language?
Translations are usually e-mailed back to the client in the original file format that was provided. If a translation requires an Affidavit of Accuracy, a notarized translation packet containing hardcopies of the translation will be mailed.
14. How do you guarantee the quality of the translation?
Para-Plus employs a systematic protocol derived from the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) Standard F 2575-06: Standard Guide for Quality Assurance in Translation. This protocol ensures that translation projects are provided efficiently, accurately, and confidentially. Para-Plus’ linguistic quality control is designed to ensure that the final translation faithfully reflects the source document in both meaning and intent; incorporates terminology appropriate to the subject matter, reflects complete fluency of the target language, and is culturally and politically sensitive to the social environment of the target audience.
Para-Plus conducts quality assurance/quality control (QAQC) through a stringent translation process in four separate phases. In phase one, a project manager (PM) is assigned to oversee the project from beginning to end. The PM will consult with the client in order to determine language service needs including establishment of the purpose for the translation, assessment of the target audience, determination of project parameters and the management of project expectations. It is the PM’s job to ensure the best possible language service experience for the client while maximizing translation team relationships, supervising translation management system effectiveness and managing work volumes efficiently for complete client satisfaction.
Once the parameters for the translation project have been set, phase two commences with the selection of the translation team composed of two or more professional language specialists. The chosen team, selected from Para-Plus extensive database of qualified personnel, will best meet the performance criteria, necessary to meet the client’s specific/defined requirements. During phase three in the process, the materials go through a translation, editing and proofreading stage. Each stage is performed by separate linguists to provide a multi-level system of checks and balances.
In phase four, projects then go through a 25-step quality accuracy review to ensure linguistic correctness and cultural relevance during the translation process. Once the translation team completes and delivers the final files to Para-Plus, PMs conduct a post-production review to evaluate the effectiveness and accuracy of the translation services provided by the translation team. Para-Plus only considers a job complete after satisfactory feedback from the client.
15. I can use a variety of web-based translation programs for my translations, why should I work with you?
Web-based translation programs are considered machine translations. While they can do an adequate job of providing you or your client the general gist of a translation, they cannot capture the cultural tone, idioms, word play and colloquialisms that a native born writer would understand. Machine translations cannot properly reproduce the complex nature of the human language.
Para-Plus’ translation teams are experienced in document, data, website/Web page translation, and they do NOT use machine or computer assisted translations. Translation memory software may be utilized to assist clients with translation budgets and reduce translation costs. For example, if the document to be processed for translation service has a large number of similar and repetitive text used in past translations, or a document contains repetitive text for translation, we will be happy to assist you with the creation of a translation memory or specific-terminology glossaries to help reduce the costs of future translations. Translation memory tools can help us identify and discount repetitive text.
16. What file formats do you accept?
Para-Plus can work in a multitude of file formats. A list of some of the common files we work with (though not the only) are listed as follows:
|• Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, Powerpoint)||• Portable Document Files (PDFs)|
|• Microsoft Publisher||• QuarkXpress|
|• Adobe InDesign||• Adobe Illustrator|
|• Adobe Photoshop||• Adobe Pagemaker|
|• Image files (jpeg, png, etc.)||• Audio files (WAV, MP3, OGG, etc.)|
|• Video files (WMV, MP4, AVI, DVD)||• Website (HTML, XML, etc.)|
17. What file formats do you provide for clients?
Managers and professional translators employ the latest software applications for text creation, terminology, editing, dictation, recording and retrieval, storage transmission, camera-ready and publishing formats. The range of computer programs utilized by both in-house staff and consultants allow us to provide translation files compatible with our clients’ programs.
Tips for Streamlining the Translation Process
Sharing readable documents is very important. If the source material is faded or hard to understand, making appropriate adjustments, such as darkening or enlarging, help to streamline the process before the client’s materials are shared with Para-Plus Translations.
Where is the target audience for the translation located? Geography is important in linguistics, so to ensure that the translation is culturally accurate, Para-Plus Translations will need to know the target audience’s location. For example, are the Spanish translations targeted to customers in the United States, Puerto Rico, Mexico or Spain? Or, are the Portuguese translations going to be read in Brazil or Portugal?
Identify the delivery format for the final translation product. Should the translation be delivered in Microsoft Word, PDF or another format? It is also important to keep in mind if a translation is going into a non-Latin based language, Russian or Chinese for example, the client’s computer needs to have international language support installed. If not, it may be necessary to send the translation documents in Word and/or PDF formats. Our professionals are happy to work with you in order to answer these types of questions.
Para-Plus Translations is ready and able to ramp up our resources if a translation project is needed in a short amount of time. However, if the client allots a realistic amount of time for a translation to be complete, it helps to streamline the process. We put every translation through a rigorous quality-control process to ensure cultural accuracy and grammatical correctness.
Our interpreters and translators are highly qualified in their areas of specialization and are often field professionals. Many of our linguists are native speakers with an average of 15 to 25 years of translating and interpreting experience.
Feel free to reach out to any member of our management team with questions or check out the FAQs above. We invite you to schedule an interpreter, request a quote for a translator, or submit your information to join our growing team of international linguists. We are here to serve your language needs.