Translation

The 7 steps in the process of translation needed for obtaining a high-quality result

To ensure that a translation conveys the same message as the original text and meets its purpose, the text cannot be just simply translated word for word from one language into the other. The process of translation is much complex, particularly in specialised fields.

In this post, you can find a description of the seven steps I follow before submitting a translation to my customers, whenever the deadline and other project conditions allow it. This is the process I’ll follow with your texts if you decide to work with me. All these tasks are necessary to provide you with translations of the highest quality that help you achieve clear and natural communication in the Spanish market.

The 7 steps in the process of translation needed for obtaining a high-quality result

Photo by Domenico Loia on Unsplash

Preliminary research before translating

Before starting with the translation of the document, I conduct preliminary research about the company and the particular text. This includes, for example:

This information is important to know the context of the document and also to keep the consistency among the different content of the same company. The more information I have available, the easier it is for me to properly adapt the text to be effective.

Translation of the text

Now it’s time to deal with the text and start conveying the original message in the target language in a natural way. For ensuring higher quality, ideally, the translation should be done into the mother tongue of the translator; in my case, I only translate into Spanish.

In this step, I solve the translation challenges arising from the text: specialised terminology, idioms, cultural references, source errors, abbreviations, etc. It’s very important to have the original documents as a reference for taking into account the layout, images, etc.

For making the text as clear and specific as possible, I also research particular aspects of each project, such as the differences between financial products, details about the regulations and certain organisations in different countries, information about the locations mentioned or the products of the company to make marketing texts more attractive, etc.

In case of doubt, I get in touch with the customer to confirm the information and to ensure that I take the right decisions.

Proofreading of the translation

Going over the whole text again improves the style. I make sure that the sentence structures are as clear and direct as possible (since, sometimes, there are too complex sentences that can be rewritten in a more natural style) and richer creative solutions or alternatives can emerge that better suit the context.

The goal is that the text reads as if it was directly written in Spanish, with the Spanish audience in mind. Furthermore, when the confidentiality agreements allow it, we perform this step between two persons, applying the so-called “four eyes” principle. We discuss each change, avoiding the introduction of errors during the proofreading step. This is an unusual added value in the industry because both steps are typically done separately. However, it’s difficult to detect the errors when rereading own texts, and many times errors are overlooked since one can even read what was intended to write instead of what’s actually written.

The goal of a translation for the Spanish market is that the text reads as if it was directly written in Spanish, with the Spanish audience in mind. Clic para tuitear

Spell check

Although it mostly just consists of adding words to the software dictionary and ignoring words that don’t have to be translated (like proper nouns, company names, or brands), this is a necessary step in the process of translation for ensuring that the text is free of typos.

Quality assurance

I use specific tools for performing the quality assurance (QA) and avoiding, among others:

  • Numerical errors
  • Inconsistencies
  • Double spaces

Desktop publishing of the document

Once the text is extracted in its final format, I adapt the layout of the document to ensure that it’s similar to the original and even fix the errors that sometimes contains the source (e.g. non-uniform text alignments, the wrong numbering of the sections, headings of the same hierarchy level with different formatting, etc.). In this step, I also check the punctuation, line breaks, graphs, etc.

Final revision before submission

Finally, I verify that the whole text is correct in its final layout and that it stays true to the source.

I deliver the translated documents per email in editable files with a layout that respects to the utmost the original (that’s why it’s worthwhile to provide the text in editable format for its translation and also contributes to optimise the budget).

Of course, after all this process, I remain at the customer’s disposal for any inquiry about the delivered work. Additionally, in line with my commitment to sustainability, I don’t print any document in the process of translation, avoiding unnecessary paper consumption.

Find out about the process of translation that your texts will go through when you order a translation

I recommend you to find out what will happen to your texts whenever you order a translation for avoiding disappointments because the process of translation can vary greatly, regardless of whether you choose a freelance professional or an agency.

Did you know all the steps included in the process of translation for ensuring the high quality of the final text? Do you find out about the process before ordering translation services? See you in the comments area!


If you need English and/or German into Spanish translations and would like to get a high-quality result, feel free to contact me. I can help you to make your business content clear, natural, and free of errors in Spanish for effective communication.

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