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by / Sunday, 02 July 2017 / Published in DIXIT...
plunet in berlin

July 2, 2017 – During the two-day event in Berlin organised by Plunet, the leading player in business and translation management systems for Language Service Providers, I had the opportunity to compare notes with operators from all over the world, of every type: no-profit bodies, software houses who produce CAT tools, the language departments of large international corporations and public bodies, small and large agencies.

I heard about a wide variety of experiences covering a huge spectrum of topics: success and failure stories, practical examples of good practices and technical details, as well as philosophical thoughts on the need for communication and the importance of language services as a tool for access to fundamental rights and freedom: one important example is the case history of MCIS Language Solutions, a Canadian no-profit body set up by the Immigration Service, which offers free language services for the disadvantaged.

While the range of requirements and objectives is varied, the meeting highlighted a need that is common to all organisations: to have work tools that provide real support, enabling us to build up experience and a culture that optimise results.

In this sense, the focus of current trends in management of work and information flows is automation. The next versions of Plunet will provide modules for automatic background management of a series of operations normally performed by project managers: these operations can be personalised and configured according to client requirements, so as to ensure LSPs have the greatest possible freedom in developing their own processes.

Quoting, project preparation, messages and progress updates will not require intervention by the PM (apart from the initial configuration), but will be handled automatically by the system.

As automation increases, so too does personalisation. Thanks to the Application Programming Interfaces, everyone can personalise the software to cater for their specific requirements, generating ad hoc interfaces that can be integrated with any platform, for enhanced service accessibility.

On the CAT tools front, Cloud-based solutions take centre stage, offering interesting automated capabilities for connection to websites, apps, various types of software, and integrating the translation process with content creation. Managing production of formats for translation and conversion is no longer a problem. The CAT tools detect the presence of new content in the source language, import and prepare it for translation, and return it ready for publication. All without generating files to be checked, sent, downloaded and uploaded.

At a personal level, I found the meeting very stimulating. I met a lot of people and their experiences helped me broaden my own understanding of the sector and resolve some reservations about the rigidity of management systems and regulations.

I came back to Italy with some new friends and plenty of new ideas about ways we can develop our services and processes!