Quality assurance (QA)
Quality Assurance (QA) is a key component of any translation management system, even with the significant advancement of automated translation technology, almost all professional translation is still done by human translators. Machines have not evolved to the point yet where they can handle the nuance of a marketing message, or the terminology and complexity of medical content.
The first step in assuring quality translation is using experienced and human translators. The Betaplan Translation only employs professional translators who have real-world skills and who follow industry standards. Our expert translators are also native speakers of the target language, which allows for precise document translation.
QA testers handle the last step of translation, and are native speakers of the language they work on. They check over the work that is placed into the final form of the project the translator produced.
Context is an important part of translation quality assurance. The formality rules and context of the overall product affect the translation. When it pertains to a subject with specific terms (like sports or technology) the language can change, and QA ensures appropriate compliance.
It all starts with the original translator, of course. Any translator worth their salt will rigorously check and double-check their own work. They’ll check their spelling and grammar: not just using an automatic tool, which can be unreliable (a computer doesn’t know that horses don’t typically have reigns, for example, unless they’ve been appointed to government by some mad Roman emperor) but actually manually checking for themselves that everything is correct and proper, referring to outside resources like dictionaries and style manuals where necessary. Spelling is by some measures the simplest part of a linguistic QA analysis since it’s basically a binary right-or-wrong issue, but it’s absolutely essential, and it requires real care and attention to detail.
Then there are other issues like factual accuracy, readability and the rather more nebulous sense of whether a text “feels” right – and believe us, a good translator will know if it doesn’t. As a result, a translator will often take their work through several drafts before submitting it to their project manager.
This is far from the end of the QA process, though. In fact, it’s barely the beginning. Two heads really are better than one when it comes to the written word: nobody’s perfect, and even the very best translators can miss occasional errors just through over-familiarity with their work. So getting at least one other person to take a fresh look at a text can make a huge difference to its quality.
Dedicated linguistic QA workers can take on a number of different roles. In theory, one person could do everything; in practice, more is better. Depending on the size, visibility, and importance of a project, the QA chain could include a very large number of people. Two heads are better than one and three heads are better than two, but of course, you do have to balance the desire for rigorous testing against things like time and budget constraints, and sheer practicality. But let’s assume money is no object: we’ll imagine that our hypothetical translation is a big glossy brochure for a flagship product, and it needs to be the very best it can be. Who’s going to make sure everything looks good?
This team not only ensures the quality translation, but also ensures that the document’s tone matches the original. Before the document is sent to a client it is reviewed one more time by the quality control manager, to make sure the document follows formatting, terminology and tone asked previously by our client.
Betaplan translations quality assurance includes formatting like margin alignment, letter font, colors among others specifications made by our clients, ensuring the document will be delivered as smoothly as possible to meet the final client’s needs