Translations: An in-house job or outsourcing?

It is increasingly necessary but also getting easier to do business across borders.

Because of different nationalities English is often used as a trade language, but there comes a time in business that this is no longer enough. When products are actually sold and used in other countries, it is often necessary to use the language of the country concerned.

As many companies opt for (in)direct representation in the countries where business is done, it is often decided to have local people translate the text on packaging, manuals, contracts etc. Obviously this has a number of advantages:

The representatives are familiar with the products and know what they are talking about
Representatives translate into their mother tongue
Representatives know what target group they need to translate for
There will be little to no extra cost check the translation

But outweigh these benefits the disadvantages of this method of translation? Have you thought about the disadvantages of translating important documents yourself?

The target language is known to the representatives, but are they also familiar with the source language? Specialized translators translate from a source language that they are expert at, to their mother tongue.
Are representatives familiar with the local laws and regulations about the product in this particular country? Does their translation meet all requirements in this regard?
For these people translating is a "second job", will the translation get it the attention it needs?
How long will it take before the translation will be finished? Who does the project management? Especially when translations must be made into different languages by different people, it can be a problem if everything is not ready in proper time.,
When concerning a technical text, do these often commercially minded people have enough knowledge?
Is there sufficient knowledge of the different applications that have to be used? A PDF or Word document will generally not cause problems, but in case more sophisticated systems must be used problems could arise.

If you choose to use a translation agency, you choose for quality and continuity.

Just 1 contact for your project, regardless of the number of languages
Different specialized translators for different types of documents. (Technical, Commercial, Legal, etc.)
For each language a translator who translates into his mother tongue from a language in which he is an expert in
A second translator for checking in order to exclude mistakes
Using a translation memory to perform faster and cheaper future translations
100% attention to your translation, it is their core business, which is why they can deliver quickly


Though it sounds attractive to carry out your translations in-house, the reality shows that the cost (often hidden and afterwards) is often higher than the cost of outsourcing.

Texts are translated more carefully and with greater speed than translations done by yourself.

You are dealing with one contact and you will receive your texts in the way you need them at the desired time.

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