July 8, 2024


Learn about the importance of having a translation memory and a quality glossary

Before hiring a translation service, have you ever checked whether the agency or independent professional used computer assisted translation tools to help create a translation memory? If you haven’t, this should certainly be a point for future consideration, because these resources can optimize turnaround time and lower project costs.


What exactly are translation memories and glossaries?

Technically speaking, a translation memory is a database employed by professional translators who use CAT-Tools (Computer Assisted Translation Tools) to organize their translation jobs for each client/subject area. Translation memories store each sentence that has been manually translated by the translator or linguist, based on the source text and its corresponding translation in the target language. Once this memory is created, the sentences can be used again in translations for the same client within a particular subject/context.


As for the glossary, it is an alphabetical list with specific or unusual terms in a specific field of knowledge.


Using glossaries and translation memories ensures that a company’s terminology and style guidelines are kept constantly updated. They also contribute to achieving standardized and consistent translations, even when there are different linguists working on the same project. By resorting to the database to search for words that have already been translated in the client’s context, cost and turnaround time can be reduced.


How does it work?

A specific program is needed in order to make use of translation memories and glossaries. As content is generated and inserted into the system, the database maps the historical content that can be reused, considering the context. The system suggests terms related to the subject for the the translator to choose from.


See some tips on hiring a quality translation service:

  • Look for an agency you feel you can trust;
  • Consider whether the agency uses up-to-date software that allows for using several memories at the same time;
  • Map out all of your translation needs;
  • Define routines and processes;
  • Establish how the memories and glossaries will be managed;
  • Set out timeframes for updates. Even when not much has changed, it’s imperative that the database remain current;
  • Add one or more fields to the glossary structure. This entails no additional cost and may be helpful in the future;
  • Back up memories and glossaries regularly.


What are the advantages of translation memory management?

Systematic, frequent and organized attention to each client’s terminology leads to greater efficiency in future projects, in addition to ensuring better consistency and adding value. By achieving greater speed and agility in future projects, the average cost per word tends to drop, because previously translated material can be reused, improving negotiating terms for new projects in the same context.


Finally, there are several tools available that use available translation memories and glossary models. Companies usually don’t need to purchase translation memory software to enjoy their benefits or to store databases. The translation agency can handle backups of the most recent memory and all content management


By choosing ZAUM Language Services, you will find a translation company that strives to uphold its reputation and excellence in project management Contact ZAUM today and find the perfect solutions for your company:

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