Video Remote Interpreting

logoHave you ever had the need for an interpreter
on-demand?

One which you prefer to see the interpreter rather
than a less impersonal approach such as telephone interpreting?
Well look no further, Able Translations has developed a fast and
interactive video remote interpreting tool called vickiTM
(Video Interpreting Centralized Knowledge Interface).

Specifically tailored to meet the needs of our clients,
this unique solution responds to the ever-growing need for
on-demand multilingual and sign language communication.
vickiTM is a real-time video remote interpreting service that brings
the user face-to-face with a qualified interpreter on demand.
It reduces the cost of interpreting as travel costs and mileage
are not incurred. The solution is highly adaptable to an array of
working environments and industries. It provides the ultimate
level of flexibility while maintaining quality interpreting.
vickiTM meets interpreting demands where on-site qualified
interpreters are not available, especially in remote locations.
This reliable, secure and user friendly solution is an excellent
fit for organizations seeking face-to-face communication
with an interpreter at a moment’s notice.

Top Three Reasons to Translate Your Website

website_translation

 

 

 

Businesses now operate in a global environment and as such it is critical to be  equipped with the right tools to effectively market your products and services to  your target audience. Digital marketing is a growing medium and many persons first  interaction with a company is through their website. It is therefore imperative that  organizations position themselves to be able to effectively communicate with their audience(s). At Able Translations we follow best practices to ensure that your translated website is completed accurately so as to yield the benefits discussed below.

 

Market Expansion

It is no longer the norm to accept English as the universal language and, as such, it should be of primary importance being able to meet the language needs of your targeted demographic. Languages such as Spanish, Arabic, Chinese, and French continue to grow exponentially, with over a billion people speaking Chinese alone. This is not to be overlooked as the potential for growth in these markets, as well as locally, is tremendous and can significantly impact the profitability of your organization.

website image

Search Engine Optimization

Having your website translated can also improve search engine optimization. This is because of the added content resulting from translating your content into multiple languages. This will yield a higher ranking search result and thereby lead to increased traffic on your website.

 

 

Brand Building

Building and managing a positive and professional image is important for every brand. Having your website translated will promote your offerings to a wider audience and aid in gaining the confidence of both your prospective and active clients. This will promote more increased product/service usage. Overall, your website will have a more global appeal thereby helping to better position your brand.

The Chinese Economy According to a Language Expert

English to Chinese translation services

“WASHINGTON – China’s economy is likely to surpass the United States in less than two decades while Asia will overtake North America and Europe combined in global power by 2030, a U.S. intelligence report said on Monday.”
(NBCNEWS)

“The reality is that China is unlikely to witness those astronomical growth rates, at least for some time. We may never see them again.”
(Time Business)

The above shows two conflicting forecasts of the future of the Chinese economy. Some economists suggest that the only way the Chinese market will continue to grow is by limiting foreign investment and shifting the Chinese economy from a producer to a more balanced producer/consumer model. Other economists suggest that the Chinese economy will continue to grow owed to increasing technological activity.
Of course, there are always opposing views when it comes to emerging economies. Everyone likes a good debate.

Admittedly, I’m not an economist. I’m not really going to throw my hat into the ring as to which paradigm is the correct one. I do, however, follow trending in the language industry and if these trends are in any way indicative of the way the Chinese economy is going to swing, my bet is on growth.

According to Global by Design, traditional Chinese breaks the top ten for both the most popular language category as well as the fastest growing. This is both for English to Chinese translation services as well as Chinese to other languages. Additionally, according to Google trends, English to Chinese translation variants are both “breakout” and “rising” search terms. Now, this data isn’t definitive but it still points to current growth in China’s economy (at least for now).

I can say that in my experience, I’ve seen a major leap forward in the English to Chinese translation services market. Businesses are partnering, employing, and manufacturing multilingually and owing to the continuous growth (whether short-term or long-term) of the Chinese economy, China is seeing a lot of this action.

For those that are doing business in China, it is absolutely imperative that you partner with a english to chinese translation services company that has experience in the Chinese market.

Some documents you will need to seek out an English to Chinese translation services company are:

• Internal documents
• Technical manuals
• Contracts (this is very important)
• Proprietary software
• Marketing collateral
• Websites
• Emails

Before doing business in China, gather information from us on English to Chinese translation services.

Also, be sure to check out these posts:

Translation Rates – What you need to know

7 Steps Toward Managing Diversity

Translate Tweets to Explode in the Twitterverse (and make more cash online

31 Amazing photos to remind you how beautifully diverse our world is

Translation Rates – What You Need to Know

ROI Translation Rates

Crank Your ROI to the Max.

I get asked a lot of questions but the question I answer most often is “what are general translation rates?” or “how much does a translation cost?” My answer is always “Well, it depends…”

Translation Rates Depend on…

What does it depend on, you ask? First it depends on what you mean by “cost”. Do you mean the price? I’m sure most people do. What I push people to understand is that the “cost” of purchasing translation services is far below the “cost” of not doing it or purchasing inferior quality work. I want translation services purchasers to think of translation as an investment. With any investment, you need to calculate an ROI (return on investment).

Here is the basic formula:

ROI= Gain from investment – cost of investment/cost of investment

For example:

You have an English to French translation, let’s say a brochure, and it costs you $300 to translate.
You send them to your French customers and receive $5000.00 in orders.

Your ROI is: ~1 566%

Now, for all you purists out there, the equation really is more complicated than this. You have to factor in the cost of printing your brochures, mailing, etc. But this is just an example that I’m using to get my point across.

Translation services are an investment in growth, customer service, and worker satisfaction.
Ok, now that I’ve gotten that out of the way. Let’s talk about translation rates.

Translation Rates – Region to Region

Translations rates vary significantly from region to region. A 1000 word English to French translation done in Quebec, Canada might be significantly cheaper than that same document translated by a company in Albuquerque, New Mexico. That’s a factor of supply. The company in Albuquerque may not have access to a huge roster of French translators.

Translation Rates – Qualifications

Aside from availability of translators, you also have different qualifications of the translators. If you have a legal document translation or a technical manual translation, the translation rate would vary compared to the translation of a birth certificate or non-technical marketing material. This is because the qualifications of someone that is translating an affidavit would have to be much higher than a typical translator owing to the fact that the legal sector has specialized terms. Beyond this, the consumer needs to guard against the potential risk of poor translation when it comes to highly technical documents.

Translation Rates – Translation Memory

Finally, the availability of translation memory factors in to your long term translation rate. Translation memory is basically a database of special terms from your previous translation projects. If you work in a highly specialized sector with niche specific terms, those terms will be stored in your translation memory. Your translation rate will decrease as time goes on because our translators can draw on your previous projects instead of having to re-invent the wheel.

So, the long and short of it is this: translation rates vary significantly. You are best off actually submitting a document for quotation versus trying to find an online list of pricing. Pricing listings do not take into account the complexity and nature of your translation projects.

11362548-roi--return-of-invertelment-concept-in-word-tag-cloud-on-white-background

I don’t care what you call it as long as you’re measuring it.

If you’re looking for a general guideline, translation rates will vary anywhere from $0.15-$0.40/word depending on type of document, rarity of the language, and time frame. For translation projects that involve graphics, the translation services provider may offer desktop publishing at a rate of $60-$80/hour.

Able Translation’s translation services fall at the bottom end of the spectrum in terms of price but that is because we have access to an extensive pool of translators and have on-staff desktop publishers and web developers.

Submit a document and we’ll get in contact with you immediately.

For more information, check out these resources:

Translate Tweets to Explode in the Twitterverse (and make more cash online)

How to Recover from a Bad Translation (and come out on top!)

How to Choose a Language Services Provider

…Wish I Had an Interpreter

For the majority of us, needing an interpreter might not come up daily. I get that. Although I’ve seen many-an interpreting sessions and have even “tested” a couple out just so I could get a handle on the process but I’ve never had to use one myself. So, today I thought “where might I, average Joe Copywriter, need an interpreter. Here’s what I came up with.

1) A Hospital Abroad –

So, I’m sitting on a beach in the Dominican Republic, drinking a fruity drink, and enjoying the sun.

“Boy am I relaxed”, I think to myself.

Turns out, I’m a little too relaxed. I fall asleep and wake up with a terrible sunburn and near sunstroke. Off to the hospital I go.

One of the first questions the doctor asks me is: “¿Es usted alérgico a algo?”

“huh” I reply.

Turns out he’s asking if I’m allergic to anything. Wish I had an interpreter…

2) A Foreign Police Station

The doctor ends up treating me, although it took longer than it should have. I’m feeling a bit woozy. I stumble out onto the street and begin to make my way back to my resort. I figure the day can’t get much worse. I realize it can as two police offers handcuff me and throw me into the back of a police car.
It turns out that the final “instructions” I was given by the doctor was not “try and take it easy until you get back to Canada”. He was actually telling me to pay at the receptionist’s desk, which I did not.
Sitting in a small room at the police station, passport confiscated, shoe laces removed, my mind wanders.

“Why on earth am I here?” I think out loud.

“¿por qué no pagar?”, an officer replies.

“Did he just respond to me?” I wonder…

I begin to speak, “Can you please tell…”

“Yo no hablan Inglés”, the officer shouts, cutting me off.

…Wish I had an interpreter.

3) Lost in a Foreign City

Alright, my fine is paid and I’m released from the police station, only to find myself lost on the streets of Santo Domingo.

“tweeeeeeeet”, I whistle for a cab.

I get in.

“¿a dónde?” the cabbie asks.

“not this again” I mutter under my breath.

…Wish I had an interpreter.

For More Information on This subject visit Able Translations atTranslations Toronto

7 Steps Toward Managing a Diverse Workforce (Part 3)

7 steps toward managing a diverse workforce: a series of workplace diversity articles

In 7 steps toward managing a diverse workforce part 2, we learned about forming a community outreach, flexible holiday schedules, and the open door policy. Part 3 of this series focuses on translation work as well as evaluating your diversity planning.

If you missed it, you should go back and check out part 1 and part 2 of the series before moving on. They can be found here:

7 Steps Toward Managing a Diverse Workforce (part 1)
7 Steps Toward Managing a Diverse Workforce (part 2)

Step 6 – Translations

In order to facilitate communication, important company documents should be translated into several languages that will meet the needs of your employees. The languages you choose to have documents translated into should close match the demographics of the company. Furthermore, they should also be reflective of local language laws. This becomes even more crucial when the same documents are used in foreign-operated company offices.

To minimize risk, translations should be accurate and complete. Be sure to use a qualified translator from a reputable company like Able Translations. The company you choose should have experience in the translation of technical manuals. Additionally, look for a company that offers cultural consulting to ensure that your company documents are reflective of the cultural nuances associated with the target language.

Some documents that could be translated to meet your diversity needs can include:

Employee manuals
• Worker safety information
• Request for time off forms
• Application forms
• Employee application forms
• Policy books
• Employee welcome packages

Beyond the translation of company documents, if your company uses proprietary software (software built specifically for your company), you may want to get it localized. Localized software would allow the user to change the language used on the user interface. This could result in improved usability for multilingual staff.

If you’d like to get company documents translated, Able Translations offers free quotes. You can call us at 1-800-840-5370 or email us at info@abletranslations.com.

Step 7 –Assessment

Assessment is a critical step in managing a diverse workforce, one that is often overlooked. It is imperative that you take accurate measurements of every diversity and inclusionary initiative you take. These measurements are used during the assessment phase. During this step, you review all of the initiatives you have put in place to ensure that they are operating as expected.

There are three basic ways to assess the effectiveness of the programs and policies you have put in place.

Surveys:

Surveys are a great way to find out the opinions of others. They could provide valuable insights into whether your diversity/inclusion initiatives are effective. In order to set up a proper survey, you must first think about what you would like to find out. In general, surveys that use a rating system (on a scale of 1-10) provide the most useful data for statistical analysis. However, when evaluating initiatives that involve an affective component, it is best to use a combination of open-ended questions and rating systems.

Tip: find a neutral person to hand out the surveys. Having a supervisor give them out could bias the surveys. I.e. the participants may feel obligated to be positive about your diversity strategy if they feel it may affect their supervisor.

Pre-test/post-test:

The pre-test/post-test is the simplest method for evaluating the effectiveness of your initiatives. It requires that you have some data from before you begin your initiative and some data collected at a milestone. You compare your past information with your current information.

Example:

Number of employees that applied for promotions in 2011 = 10
—————————–Mentorship program started Jan. 1/2012————–
Number of employees that applied for promotions in 2012 = 17

Of course, you would have to control for other factors such as turnover and recruitment. If you’d like to look deeper into the relationship, you could survey employees and find out if mentoring was a factor in their decision to apply for a promotion.

Time-series Analysis:

In a time series analysis, is a little bit more difficult to do but well worth it. I highly recommend that your time-series be set up by someone familiar with statistical analysis. The idea behind it is that you have data points arranged according to time. You should have several data points for before the initiative was implemented and after. This allows you to see how things are changing over time and gives you insight into any trends that may be occurring.

For the best possible data output, use a Box-Jenkins time-series. It is the standard in program evaluation.

Final Thoughts

Planning and implementing a diversity and inclusion strategy takes a great deal of time and forethought but most of all, it needs to be genuine. To implement these initiatives because it is “standard practice” or a passing interest will lead to lack luster results.

My advice is to:

• Get excited about celebrating the things that make us unique;
• Get other passionate people on board;
• Listen to the needs of others instead of making assumptions;
• Plan, implement, measure, and re-plan
• Start today

For More Information on This subject visit Able Translations atTranslations Toronto

First Call Revolution: The one surefire way to increase your first call resolution metric

First Call Revolution:The one surefire way to increase your first call resolution metric

Knowledgeable customer service reps have always been the cornerstone of the first call resolution call center metric. If your reps can answer questions quickly and accurately without leaving a customer dangling or having to call back, you’re golden. A lot of call centers excel at this but the world is changing, you’ve got to go a step further.

Your Customers Don’t Always Speak English

The two major types of call centers are sales centers and customer service centers (usually with a soft sell component). First call resolution is critical in both centers. Because of immigration and adherence to language laws, call centers are typically serving customers that speak a variety of languages. In order to achieve an amazing first call resolution rate, you’ll need an interpreting service backing your call center. I’ll explain how this would work in two styles of call centers.

Sales Centers and First Call Resolutions

The objective in a sales call center is, quite obviously, to make sales. In this context, a first call resolution is making a sale on first contact with the consumer.
You have customers (I assume) that want to speak in their own language. They must, if they think that is more important than price. In order to resolve the call on the first instance, you’re going to have to speak their language, explain things in terms they understand, and reply to all of their objections…and you have to do this before they can rationalize not using your service.

In “sales” call centers that deal primarily with Anglophone populations (if there are any left), you would only need to employ English speaking customer service representatives. Since we know that it is unlikely you serve only English speaking consumers and I also know you want a stellar first call resolution rate (why else would you be reading this article?), you would need to deploy a telephone interpreting backend to your call center.

Here is how this would go:

John, a customer service representative at your call center, places his call to the phone number that has been pulled out of the customer database for him. He dials the phone cautiously while trying several different pronunciations of his potential customer’s last name. A man picks up the phone. John stumbles through the customer’s last name only to find out his pronunciation was way off. After a few exchanges, John realizes that unless he gets an interpreter on the phone, this sale will be lost.

John asks the customer to hold for a moment so he can dial in an interpreter. After dialing the 1-800 number, he is connected to an operator who helps him diagnosis which language he needs. He is then transferred to an interpreter.

The exchange goes much smoother from herein out. John makes the sale on first contact, becomes top sales person in the company and is sent on a Hawaiian vacation (note: I added this last part for effect. Vacation destinations may vary from company to company).

Service Centers and First Call Resolutions

Service call centers are a bit different than sales call centers (think over-the-phone banking, CAA or AAA). They are usually inbound, people that call are usually already customers, and a first call resolution isn’t a sale but a solved issue.

I’ll tell yeah, easy issues become major problems when the lines of communication are blurred by an inability to overcome a language barrier. Your customer service rep’s responses may not be exactly what the customer was asking for which will likely result in that customer calling back again to have the same issue resolved (hopefully once and for all).

Of course, this could be avoided if your call center has an interpreting company on the backend. For a first call resolution, as soon as the customer service rep finds that communication is hampered by a language barrier, an interpreter can be brought on to clarify the customer issue and respond with the best possible advice (as dictated by the customer service rep). That’s how you get a first call resolution.

Telephone Interpreting Company

To summarize:

-Both sales and service call centers should deploy an interpreting company on their backend
-This will help raise your first call resolution rate as well as sky-rocket customer satisfaction scores
-Using the interpreting backend is as simple as conference calling your language service provider at a dedicated 1-800 number, requesting the language you need, and then speak to your customer through the interpreter.

Able Translations’ telephone interpretation service can be your call center’s multilingual backend. We will set up your account, hook you with the 1-800 and aid you in training your staff to use the system. We do this for free. No set up fees, no monthly minimums, and low rates. Sign up by calling us at 1-800-840-2253.

For more information Check out:

Interpreting Services in Hospitals

The Difference Between Simultaneous Interpreting and Consecutive Interpreting

How To Choose a Language Services Provider

For More Information on This subject visit Able Translations atTranslations Toronto

Video Remote Interpreting Services in Hospitals: Patient Outcomes, Budget Concerns, and Technological Developments

Video Remote Interpreting Services in Hospitals: Patient Outcomes, Budget Concerns, and Technological Developments

Video Remote Interpreting - Doctor Photo

Video Remote Interpreting in Hospitals

The need for high quality interpreters in hospitals is now more pressing than ever. Our society is diversifying at an incremental rate and these citizens have an equal right to proper care. Too often, patients that do not speak the local language are forced to rely on “interpreters of convenience” like relatives and hospital staff or worse, they are left without being able to fully communicate with their physician. Language discordance can increase hospital stay and cause poorer patient care. This can have significant financial ramifications. In order to minimize the effect of language discordance, hospitals need to provide specialized interpreters to their patients. The increased budgetary restraints imposed on public health providers coupled with a paradigm of risk management has made this need even greater. Costs can be cut by providing high quality care to all patients and mitigate the risk associated with miscommunication. The development of cost-effective technologies in the language industry has simplified the once complex and expensive interpreting service delivery.

The Studies

Numerous studies have suggested that language discordance leads to increased costs for the patient and the hospital as well as poorer health outcomes. Specifically, they note that those who do not speak the local language are more likely to: see their physician more often, are less likely to be given follow-up appointments, less likely to return for follow-up appointments, and are less likely to follow aftercare instructions (Bischoff, Loutan:2004; John-Baptiste et al:2004). In the long run this can lead to worse health outcomes and consequently increased strain on an already stressed healthcare system.

Show Me the Money

In monetary terms, one study found that length of stay was increased by an average of 0.5 days for non-English speaking patients in an American hospital. It is important to note that this increase is incremental dependant on the diagnosed condition. With an estimated cost of stay of $680USD per day, the impact of language discordance on hospital and patient budgets can be significant (John-Baptiste et al: 2004).

What We Do Now

From these results, the importance of interpreting in hospitals can be seen but there is a major logistical concern that has to be addressed. In healthcare facilities, immediate service is often required. This need is most often met through on-staff interpreters or non-professionals. On-staff interpreters are a significant budgetary consideration while non-professional interpreters can often compromise proper medical care and expose healthcare providers to liability. The standard for interpreting services currently is over-the-phone. This solution offers scheduling flexibility and on-demand service but it lacks the visual cues that could have a positive impact on diagnoses and, consequently, mortality and length of stay.

What We Should Be Doing

The solution to these concerns is video remote interpreting. Video remote interpreting offers around the clock access to interpreters via a web-based video interface. It works by connecting healthcare professionals and patients with a qualified interpreter through a two-way video interface. This allows visual cues and context to be added to the interpretation thereby increasing the richness of the message conveyed. Additionally, video remote interpreting also offers an efficient way to connect with an American Sign Language interpreter, which of course, requires visual information. Deploying video remote interpreting in hospitals can increase accessibility, quality of care, and patient satisfaction while decreasing the budgetary strain of on-staff interpreters and exposure to risk from non-professional interpretation.

Language interpreting is an integral component of quality care for patients with limited English proficiency. To reduce poor health outcomes, increased length of stay, and consequently, increased budget strain, hospitals should consider using video remote interpreting as a way to compliment their current interpreting service delivery model.

References:
Bischoff, A., Loutan, L. 2004. Interpreting in Swiss Hospitals. Interpreting (6). 181-204

John-Baptiste, A, Naglie, G, Tomlinson, G, Alibhai, S, Etchells, E, Cheung, A, Kapral, M, Gold, W, Abrams, H, Bacchus, M, Krahn, M. 2004. The Effect of English Language Proficiency on Length of Stay and In-hospital Mortality. Journal of General Internal Medicine (19). 221-228