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Choosing а Translation Services Vendor: In-House, Freelance, or Outsource?

Choosing а Translation Services Vendor: In-House, Freelance, or Outsource?

Translation has been around for dozens of centuries. Have you ever heard of the Rosetta Stone discovered in Egypt? It has featured three languages all engraved on the same cut of the stone, Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs, Demotic script, and Ancient Greek. Even before that, medieval civilizations were accustomed to translation, especially of important texts like the Bible, Greek philosophy, and nerdy books on medicine written by Arab scientists. 

Now, our world is globalized more than ever, and translation is no longer a luxury limited to certain texts. The world doesn’t know itself now without translation. 

Consequently, it became an on-demand service for an array of enterprises and individuals. In this article, we’ll shed light on translation as a service, and its providers, asking questions like: what is the difference between in-house, freelance, or outsourced translators?

Let’s dive right into it. 


Who Needs Translation Services?

Since translation is in every corner of our lives, let’s explore the major sectors that benefit from it:


Government sector

Governments rely on translation for sustaining diplomatic relations like immigration. It also handled all legal and governmental documents. It also plays a vital role in making legislative documents accessible to all citizens, especially in multilingual regions. It allows governments to provide public services, such as healthcare and education, to diverse populations.


Legal Field

The legal field relies heavily on translating several kinds of documents like contracts, agreements, court documents, bank statements, birth certificates, marriage certificates, patents…and plenty of others. Moreover, intergovernmental organizations like the United Nations need to translate their documents in order to spread their mission and goal to the rest of the world. 


Gaming Field

Nowadays video games encounter lots of translation and localization processes, especially for internationalized games, or those made accessible in several countries. Game translation ensures a user-friendly experience. The translation process is not as simple as it might sound, sometimes it involves localizing names, settings, and other significant parts of the game narrative to make it resonate with a local audience.

Read more: Localization Glossary


Media and Film

The same goes for all kinds of audiovisuals. Imagine an international streaming service like Netflix launched in plenty of countries around the world, it wouldn’t have survived without subtitling and localization services.


Technical Industries

By technical I’m referring to any industry that requires specialized knowledge, like the medical and pharmaceutical field, manufacturing, engineering field…etc. Technical translators are there to find a middle ground between having industry knowledge and the art of mediating between languages. 


Companies & Businesses

In this blog, we’ve talked a lot about the importance of translation services from the point of view of brands and businesses. Below are the most important takeaways:

Brands need financial/business translation for documents like bank statements, job contracts, company registration, insurance papers, invoices, and all the like. 

More importantly, localization and transcreation services step into the marketing world and work hand in hand with all marketing departments. They don’t only handle textual translation, but also take care of brand identity, from things like its website or App design to its advertisement copies, and slogans.


Read more: Translation Costs: rates per word


Hiring Translators: In-House, Freelance, or Outsource


In house Translation

This kind of translation means you will provide facilities for full-time or part-time translators to work, including equipment like decent laptops or computers, and other workplace utilities, and resources. In-house translation service uses quote-based pricing, not an hourly one, unlike freelance translators. It’s considered more costly because it involves recruiting, and training translators when freelance translators don’t require that most of the time. 

However, in-house translation makes face-to-face interactions way easier. For certain projects, it is always better to have your team on the ground, working together in the same work environment. This can result in quicker turnaround, or simply shortcutting tons of Zoom meetings and emails by keeping all team members on the same page from day one. 


Freelance Translation Service

Freelance translators are slightly different than translation companies. First, their charge per word, or hour, which can vary according to many factors like language pair difficulty, or deadline. 

The good news for many translation companies or clients is that freelancers are less costly. They don’t require a workplace, laptop, wifi, or utilities. Simply they work from the comfort of their own space, and you only pay for the translation service.

Freelancers are also great for ‘talent gaps’, it’s when a temporary project requires certain talent or specialization that isn’t found in your in-house full-time team. This is when freelancers step in to save the day.

Yet, one of the common drawbacks of freelance work is its communication inconsistencies. Unlike the on-site team who work fixed shifts, freelancers are more of free birds who have a flexible schedule.


Outsource Translation

Outsourcing is similar to freelancing, but it involves hiring an independent language service provider to handle different kinds of linguistic tasks like translation, localization, content writing, copyediting, and proofreading.

Like freelancing. Outsourcing is a better alternative if you want to reduce the cost of building an in-house team. Outsource translation can be budget-friendly and time-friendly. 

First, you can let the language service provider work around your budget, and that way you don’t end up overspending on one project. 

Secondly, it’s quicker, you don’t have to spend months to build your in-house team. Outsourcing gets the job done hassle-free. 

Moreover, it’s an exciting option if you require translation into multiple language pairs, which can be limited to in-house translation.

Ironically, LSPs hire freelancers for their projects, which might result in inconsistencies in the translation quality, and sometimes it might feel like you have no grip on how the translation or the quality assurance processes work. 

Yet, this is not always the case since successful LSPs communicate clearly with their clients and elaborate on all parts of the process.


Fast Trans is your best-outsourced choice for translation work

That being said,  Fast Trans is an ISO-certified company and one of the leading translation service providers in the Middle East. It has decades of experience with big clients like Emaar, Etisalat, ZED Developments, and Orascom across and beyond the MENA region. Over the years, Fast Trans has acquired what it takes to be your best option for outsourced translation services.

It offers more than 20 kinds of translation services, including localization, SEO Translation, and transcreation that are handled by a certified team of professionals trained to deliver the highest quality at a rock-bottom price.

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