How often have you had conversations with colleagues about how to write a particular passage or document? Sometimes it's hard to agree on the appropriate tone, style, and content. And that's only in one language.
Now add multiple languages, cultures, locales, and experiences into the mix and it's easy to see that what's a good translation for one person is a bad translation for somebody else.
The answer to sidestepping these kinds of unsolvable situations? Develop quality metrics. Quality metrics are:
- Objective quality measurements that are customized to your needs (timing, post-ship defects per 1,000 words, number of review changes per page)
- Jointly defined between client and vendor
- Tracked on every assignment
- Reviewed and reported on regular basis
Given the importance of quality in medical translations, it is surprising and disappointing that in the course of this decade, very little progress has been made in the area of measurable translation quality. Nine years ago, I wrote about Six approaches to measuring translation quality. Looking at these six approaches now, the only change is that the Germany-only DIN 2345 standard has been replaced by EN 15038, a European standard that sets out the requirements for providing quality translation services.
Are there really no new models, no approaches, no new ideas?
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