translator and editor maintaining quality control
By: Autumn On: September 26, 2016 In: Translation Comments: 0

When you need a translation from one language to another, you might be wondering if you should hire a freelance translator or a translation agency. This is a common question, since many people have trouble deciding which one will work best for their project.

One reason you might be considering going with a freelancer is that he or she might appear to be the cheaper option. But freelancers don’t always offer the best solutions in the long run, as you’ll see when you take a look at the advantages of working with a translation agency.

Translation Agencies Have High Expectations of Their Translator

You might have noticed that it’s pretty easy to find a freelance translator online. This is because anyone can call themselves a freelancer, as long as they have a computer and can speak two or more languages.

But you don’t want to hire just anyone for your translation project. You need someone who is more than just capable of writing in more than one language. You need a translator who is fully fluent and has years of experience translating.

That’s where a translation agency comes in. Freelancer translators can be hard to vet, but the typical agency has strict requirements for its translators. Most translation agencies require that their translators have a college degree, experience in their chosen industry (i.e. Life Sciences), and the ability to demonstrate their proficiency in the languages they translate. This ensures that you’ll get the best results possible for your translation project.

working with a professional translation agency

Agencies Can Handle a Large Volume of Work

When you hire just one person to meet all your translation needs, you might find that he or she struggles to do it all in an efficient and timely manner. This is especially the case when you have a tight deadline and lots of translation work.

When you hire a translation agency, you have access to a whole team of translators who can handle your project. This often equates to faster turnaround times so you never miss a deadline.

Additionally, if you need content translated into multiple languages, a translation agency is your best bet since they have an array of translators with whom they work. If you opt for a freelance translator, you’ll likely find yourself having to hire multiple different freelancers as it’s unlikely just one translator will offer services in every language you require.

Yet another benefit is that most translation agencies have translation memories. This means that if you have some phrases or passages in your content that show up a few times, the translation agency can save the translation from the first one and use it again as needed. This will save you both time and money.

Agencies Have a Process in Place

Another benefit of using a translation agency over a freelance translator is the fact that agencies have a finely honed process. Instead of having one person translate, edit and proofread the content, agencies often have multiple people checking for accuracy.

For example, one person might translate your content, and he or she will pass it along to someone else to edit before it is then handed over to a proofreader. Another person will handle the payment details while the project manager stays in communication with you to ensure you’re satisfied. This way, everyone is a specialist at their job instead of trying to do it all.

If you’re considering translation services, make sure you think carefully about exactly what you require of your language provider. Although freelance translators may be a more appealing choice at first glance, translation agencies often save you time and money (not to mention headaches) in the long run.

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