How to choose a translation company?

The quality of translations is increasingly important, especially in the business world. Miscommunication may sometimes lead to funny situations, yet often it has very painful and damaging results. Therefore, if you take translation seriously, especially if the success of your product may depend on it, you should pick the company that will provide this service to you carefully. In doing that, try to find out:

  1. Does your potential translation provider have experience working for significant business and/or government clients on big translation projects? If your translation is of great importance, you may want to make sure the company has sufficient capacities, experience and reputation to meet your needs.
  2. Does the company have specialised translators or does it claim that its translators are up for any kind of texts just because they are language specialists with university degrees? No one can be an expert in every area, yet if your text deals with a specific topic, such as finance, insurance, software etc., it is crucial that the translator has adequate knowledge of the subject area. You wouldn’t go to a car repairman to get your teeth fixed, would you? Similarly, you shouldn’t entrust a highly complex legal translation to someone whose has no or very little knowledge in the field. The best translators are the ones who, in addition to linguistic skills, have knowledge of a specific area or areas acquired through education, training or long-term specialization.
  3. Does the translation company have a quality system that ensures high standards? Does it make sure every translation is of high quality and takes full responsibility for it, or does it merely act as an intermediary forwarding texts between the client and the translator?
  4. Does the translation price quoted by the company cover the complete package of translation services, including translation, editing/proofreading, formatting and delivery? Some translation agencies in Lithuania give only the “translation” price and then deny all the responsibility for incorrect terminology, poor style and even grammatical errors on the grounds that “only translation was ordered” and that improving style, checking terminology etc. are additional services that need to be ordered and paid for separately.
  5. Does the company charge prices that can enable it to hire the best professionals? A low price is nice, but not if it comes at the expense of quality. Therefore, if you are a regular translation client, you may want to find out what the reasonable prices/translator’s fees are in the relevant market. Many companies in Lithuania often rely on undergraduate students and other inexperienced translators to keep their prices very attractive.