Linguistic review and quality assurance (QA) are essential in localization programs. Measuring and maintaining quality can be challenging in translation and localization; quality can mean different things to different people, both internal and external stakeholders.
A key goal for any QA program is to achieve consistency throughout all multilingual content, at every stop of the global journey. The common approach is to fix errors and quality issues at a task-level. It is important to view QA strategically, implementing agreed quality matrices and defining workflows, establishing service levels agreements (SLAs) and key performance indicators (KPIs) with language service providers (LSPs).
Measuring QA can be tricky, as quality levels will vary across product range, content type, country, language and overall localization objectives. For global social media listening programs, where multilingual social media content is translated to assess brand reputation in multiple online markets, quality will be linguistically lower than a corporate marketing brochure. User generated content (UGC) is typically translated through machine translation (MT) to enable the “gist” of content whereas marketing content often goes through a transcreation process, where content is not literally translated but culturally adapted to create a local experience. Quality levels for certain content types can be subjective and this means QA must be an area of continuous review and improvement for most enterprise localization programs.
Putting localization projects through rigorous QA programs guarantees consistency of branded content. If there are no quality measures in place, then output can vary dramatically across regions. QA programs allow teams to review content in context and identify any formatting, technical or performance issues. Ongoing work with the same linguistic and review team results in a growing knowledge base of how a brand should be represented and long-term, ideally reduces the number of errors or functionality issues. Many complex localization programs have dedicated teams with quality management and testing capabilities who drive linguistic reviews, language quality assurance and necessary testing practices – functional and linguistic – on multiple platforms to ensure quality is met across all devices.
As one of the leading LSPs in the world, Welocalize establishes strategic partnerships with clients and many teams are dedicated to individual clients. By investing in teams that work consistently and on a long-term basis with clients, testers, translators, linguists, interpreters and designers can all build a strong knowledge base about a client’s business and product range. This ultimately improves the overall quality of output, strengthening a brand’s presence, consistently, across all regions.
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