What is translation memory and how can it improve your bottom line?

Standalone translation software can’t deliver the quality, consistent performance most businesses need when translating content from one language to another. As a tool to supplement and enhance human translations, though, translation memory and other software can support consistent, quality translations while even streamlining the cost of this language service.

Translation memory won’t make an immediate impact on your first translation project. Instead, its value will become more apparent over time as you develop this resource and achieve new efficiencies in your translation process, among other benefits that can improve your company’s overall bottom line.

Here’s a brief overview of how this powerful tool is used by professional translators, and how it delivers material benefits that strengthen your company’s bottom-line.

How translation memory works

Translation memory is a software-based tool that supplements ongoing translations by identifying snippets, sentences or even entire paragraphs that have already been translated on a different project.

For example, if your company has standardized, boilerplate language for how it describes a piece of proprietary software or business process, this description may appear many times across different pieces of branded content. When a professional translator is translating this content into another language, translation memory can flag this previously translated language, allowing the translator to quickly insert the exact wording from the already translated content.

Its functionality grows over time as additional content adds to the software’s memory. The more content in its memory, the more likely the software will be to identify previously translated passages, saving time and improving consistency in your content.

Saving time and money for your business

When seeking out a language service provider to handle translations for your company, use of a memory tool is an important capability to look for. Its use will deliver three key benefits to your business:

  • Faster translation and accelerated project delivery. As your translation memory builds over time, translators will be able plug in snippets, sentences and paragraphs to expedite initial translations of your content. It also reduces some of the copy editing and QA labor later on in translation workflows, further accelerating project delivery.
  • Lower translation costs. Thanks to repurposing already translated text, the cost of creating new translations is inevitably lower. These savings are more significant the longer you’ve maintained your relationship with your LSP, as your volume of memory will be greater.
  • Improved quality assurance. Content stored in your translation memory has already been edited and validated to be error-free. By using this as a resource, translators can build new content translations using existing snippets and sentences that have already gone through the QA process.

The value of a trusted LSP

Translation memory capabilities are built through an ongoing partnership with your language service provider. Therefore, the ROI of this tool increases the longer you work with your translation vendor. Like the glossary and style guide you also develop with your translation partner, TM makes it possible to achieve new efficiencies that reward your business for maintaining a relationship with a single LSP.

Translation memory is just one of many software tools that can improve translation accuracy and efficiency, while also supporting quality assurance for your translation projects. Contact Protranslating today to harness the benefits of this powerful tool for your business.


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