Translation Memory for Engineering & Manufacturing Translations
Translating technical documents for manufacturing and engineering companies is a complex process that takes time, expertise and translators with specific industry subject matter knowledge. Highly technical vocabulary and terminology, combined with the requirement that all translations be impeccably accurate, adds to the complexity of the translation process. One of the tools used by International Language Services (ILS) to make the translation process as cost-effective as possible is translation memory.
Translation memory is essentially a database that is integrated with the software our native speaking translators use to manage your translation. As documents are translated, completed translations of technical terms, phrases, and even complete sections of documents are stored in a customer-specific database. Over time, this database grows to include more and more already-translated material. As the translator works, the software compares words and phrases in the document being translated to stored translations in the database. When matches, called “translation pairs,” are found, they are presented to the translator, who reviews them and can instantly insert those stored translations into the file. The time savings are reflected in the cost of the translation project and in faster turnarounds.
These translation pair matches may include “fuzzy matches,” where a phrase or sentence matches a previous translation, but has some differences. For example, an operator’s manual for a piece of industrial equipment might include instructions like, “To start the process, press the green Start button.” Once this is translated and stored in translation memory, a similar sentence, like “To stop the process, press the red Stop button.” will be presented to the translator, who only needs to translate the words that are different and ensure that the sentence flows properly.
Translation memory is one of the reasons that long-term relationships with a translation company are important. Every document translated expands the database of previously translated material, making subsequent translations more efficient and less costly. In highly technical documents, such as user manuals, Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS), IFU’s, online help files, safety decals, labels, business contracts and proposals, the improved efficiency is even more marked and your preferred translations of industry specific technical terms are consistent over time.
Manufacturing & Engineering Companies Benefit from Translation Memory
Given the highly technical nature of the range of documents created by companies that manufacture capital equipment, agricultural and construction machinery, industrial machinery and high-tech products, translation memory is a highly valuable technology. As much as 40% of a document may consist of repeated phrases, with only minor variations. That even applies to documents for different or related products, manufactured or designed by the same company. In a long-term relationship with your technical translation company, each translated project adds to the translation memory database, speeding future translations and reducing your translation costs. Companies can assist in the process of building translation memory by having their in-country contacts translate glossaries of technical terms in advance. Developing style guides that encourage consistency, simplicity, and clarity for documentation teams also improves efficiency. Use of boilerplate text in source documents, where appropriate, rather than writing new text for each new document, can also help build translation memory and reduce costs.
Cost-Effective Translation Services for Manufacturing, Engineering & IT
At International Language Services, we bring the latest technology and most qualified translation teams to every project. From our native-speaking translators, with long experience in manufacturing and engineering translations, to our state-of-the-art translation software and environment, we are consistently committed to maximum efficiency and accuracy. Our multilingual language service company translates over 150 foreign languages, including French, Spanish, Chinese, Japanese, Russian, German, Latvian, Italian, Hindi, Portuguese, Swedish, Norwegian, Korean, Hungarian, Vietnamese, and many more. Our ISO-certified quality control process, document management and our experienced project managers work together to provide the cost control and on-time performance you expect and deserve. Contact us to discuss your current manufacturing and engineering translation projects.