TECHNOLOGICAL DEVELOPMENT IS THE WAY FORWARD IN PROFESSIONAL TRANSLATION
September 15, 2016 – Dotwords took part in the 2016 Translation Technology Insights Research, an international market survey on translations conducted by SDL Trados, the translation software suite implementing the world’s most advanced and popular Computer-Aided Translation tools (CAT).
More than 2,700 professionals were interviewed for this year’s survey: freelance translators, Language Service Providers and public/private-sector companies in 115 countries, working in 9 different languages.
The survey analyzed the impact of technology on professional translation, in order to identify current market challenges and the areas to be developed to respond to market needs with cutting-edge tools.
The findings highlight five key technological trends.
1.QUALITY IS KING:
quality is by far the most important factor, even more than cost and speed: surprisingly, it is considered 6 times more important than price and 2.5 times more important than speed.
2.PRODUCTIVITY IS THE NO. 1 CHALLENGE:
on the other hand, 72% of respondents say they worry about losing competitive advantage if they lack tools that favor productivity and efficiency, despite maintaining high quality and containing delivery times; more is needed than translation memories… but what?
This is where technology comes into play, providing increasingly important support for the translator: almost 90% of the respondents use CAT tools and consider them a primary tool to respond to the exploding demand for translations.
This is not enough, however: the watershed could be Machine Translation (MT), which – surprisingly considering the criticisms levelled at it in the past – is attracting growing support: almost half of the respondents think MT is the driver to maximize productivity and efficiency, while only 1 in 4 still regard it as a threat.
Among translators who make constant use of MT – 40% of the sample – almost three quarters recommend it, particularly people working in public and private organizations.
In its conclusions, the SDL Trados survey indicates that Machine Translation is the real technological solution for current and future market challenges.
3.NEW WORKING METHODS: IS THE CLOUD THE SOLUTION?
The survey confirms a trend that is evident on the market: 4 professionals out of 5 work in remote teams, sometimes in different continents. Moreover, the nature of translation work has changed definitively: compared with 5 years ago, 70% of professionals are dealing with so-called “chunking” jobs (i.e., micro translation jobs), with customers asking for faster delivery.
So it is no surprise that the majority of respondents say that cloud platforms are the best solution to meet the new market trends: although professionals currently prefer hybrid solutions – use of both the desktop and cloud-based platforms, depending on requirements – companies cannot ignore the cloud as the key environment to be developed with new tools.
4.TECHNOLOGY INTEGRATION: A SYNONYM FOR EFFICIENCY?
CAT software tools, terminology management databases, machine translation tools, collaborative systems… there is no lack of specialized technology on the professional translation market.
Among the respondents, 79% say they use 2 or more translation software categories: the key today, therefore, is to create tools that are compatible and can “talk” to one another easily.
5.USER EXPERIENCE: IS AN APP THE WAY FORWARD?
The 2016 Translation Technology Research finds that 59% of professionals prefer to customize the software tools they use in their translation work and expect technologies to be increasingly easy to customize: 75% of the interviewees hope that, over the next 5 years, CAT tools improve in this direction, while only 57% think they are already easy enough to customize.
This is where apps come in: they are potentially appreciated by 68% of the sample, in both their professional and personal lives.
THE DOTWORDS VIEW
“The findings of the SDL Trados survey confirm the development strategy based on innovation and technology we have always pursued,” comments Dotwords CEO Gabriella Soldadino. “Our R&D team is working on a project to integrate a variety of software tools and is giving priority to the exploration of Machine Translation, because we too believe post-editing will be increasingly important in the future.”
Dotwords’ main objective today is the development of the DTMS Dotwords Translation Management System, an “integrated system” of cloud-based computer solutions for the management of translations and localizations from and to any language, for video, web, audio, desktop publishing and text documents. The system integrates the Plunet management platform, the SDL Trados platform for translations, and Dotsub for video captioning).
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