A Personal Approach To Translation Services

by Jared DiMassino


The era of personal service is back

Translation services, in some cases, can be similar to the hit show The Office. During Season Eight, newly appointed Dunder Mifflin CEO, Robert California (played by James Spader), asks the Scranton branch, “If the office superstore was supposed to put us little suppliers out of business, why are we still here?”

This question leads to silence and blank stares from the other characters. Robert California follows up with the essence of why client service is and will always be the great differentiator no matter what product or service you bring to market.

“Let me tell you how I buy something these days. I know what I want; I go on the Internet, I get the best price. Or I don’t know what I want and I go to a small store that can help me. The era of personal service is back. You are back. You’ll find that customers will pay our higher prices and then they will thank us, and we will say to them “you are welcome.”

Personal service with translation services

Yes, the era of personal service is back and small to mid-size translation companies know this.


Small-scale translation companies have fewer clients than large companies. These companies will spend more time focusing on customer service and building relationships with their clients.

With small-scale translation companies, you are more likely to experience a level of personal service just as what you would expect from your local mom-and-pop hardware store.

Localization agency over in-house translation

When you have a website, marketing collateral, user manuals, and training materials that all need to be translated into at least one language, you may see this as a daunting task. Appropriate translation services can be done efficiently with a partner localization agency.

You want (really you need) a team of dedicated professionals who know the linguistic nuances and potential pitfalls to get your translated content reaching the right markets. A small translation services company can help guide you through this process.

A comprehensive approach to client service

A comprehensive approach to client service means that the translation team is working day in and day out to make sure the translation project runs smoothly and on schedule.

At Interpro, we assign an AE (account executive) as well as a project manager to every client project. They are essentially the two client-facing team members that collaborate on a project.

The AE is the first team member to be in contact with a potential client. This initial communication between the AE and a client is very important because it's the decisive first steps of building the long-term relationships we achieve.

A consultative sales approach/method for localization

AE's should use a consultative sales approach to both educate the client about the translation process and offer the client the most appropriate, cost-effective translation solution.

Before the project begins, the AE needs to clearly understand the scope. At this point, the AE will ask necessary questions to determine the most fitting translation workflow.

Consistent communication throughout the translation cycle

Once a quote is approved by the client it is then sent to the project manager. We always start with an internal kick-off meeting between the translation project manager, account executive, and any other production team member to discuss project scope, milestones, deliverables, and questions or concerns raised by either party.

The kick-off meeting ensures that all members have an in-depth understanding of the project and that all expectations are set.

Role of the translation project manager

Communication is an essential part of effective translation project management. This process begins with an introductory notice and continues with weekly status reports throughout the duration of the project.

Once the translation phase is completed the project manager coordinates multiple levels of quality review to ensure the terminology is accurate with proper formatting.

Committed to quality

When it comes to client service, the translation services industry is really no different than any other industry. You are more likely to receive personal attention with a small shop versus a shop that has thousands of active clients. With a smaller firm, you will find a partner that is as committed to quality as you are.

Sure, the big time shops in any industry can usually name drop a venerable list of clients along with almost too-good-to-be-true pricing, but all too often they fall short on the service side.

Robert California's insightful monolog is so dead-on in championing client service because it is ultimately what builds those much sought after long standing relationships with your clients. You know, the kind that almost guarantees you win their business time after time.