Characteristics to Look for in a Translation Service Provider

As the world becomes more global, translation services also become more essential for businesses. The internet allows companies to find clients, customers, and partnerships across the globe. While this is obviously helpful for growing and expanding a company, it also presents some unique challenges. A professional and experienced translation service provider can help you overcome some of those obstacles.

The word hello displayed in many different languages

1. Go Native

This really can’t be stressed enough. If you’ve ever tried to navigate Paris using French you learned in high school, you understand how difficult it is to tackle a foreign language as a non-native. Languages have incredible nuance, and native speakers are more capable of identifying the intricacies of their own language. There are also regional dialects and variations that you won’t find in a textbook. When in doubt, always rely on a native speaker.

2. Follow the Passion

Professional translations can be difficult. There aren’t always perfectly equivalent words or phrases, so sometimes you have to get a bit creative. In the business world, there’s technical language as well. Without the appropriate background, it’s easy to get lost or confused. Translators who are passionate about what they do are willing to put in the time and effort it takes to get it right.

This is why passion is so essential. It separates the good from the great. You may be able to handle a restaurant menu on your own, but a technical manual or medical translation won’t be nearly as easy. Translators who are passionate about their work are far more likely to go above and beyond to provide you with the most accurate and reliable translations.

3. Check Credentials and References

Expertise doesn’t happen overnight. It takes years of experience, training, and education to become masterful at anything. Obviously, this should mean the translator has credentials and references that can be provided. While there’s no one organization or certification for translators, they should still be able to offer you some sort of verification of their credentials and references to confirm their background. The appropriate organizations and specific details can vary from country to country and from language to language, so there’s no quick guide that’s universal.

4. Discipline and Motivation

Your translators won’t be punching a clock or working in your office building. In fact, your translators might not be on the same continent. This may be a little frustrating at times, but it simply makes discipline more important. Clearly, you’ll have to communicate your deadlines and requirements early and without any confusion. Your translators will have to be motivated and disciplined in order to adhere to your schedule and level of performance. While this may sound like quite the hurdle, it doesn’t have to be.

Page sitting on a desk in the midst of translation

5. Focused Knowledge or Background

When it comes to businesses, many translations tend to be in areas that require technical knowledge or specific backgrounds. While most translators shouldn’t have any difficulty with general correspondence, this isn’t typically what companies need. When looking for professional translators, you may also want to consider if they have experience in medicine, biochemistry, or other technically-demanding fields. This is essential if you want accuracy and reliability. The proper knowledge and relevant professional background make all the difference.

As long as you keep these characteristics in mind, ask questions, and verify their qualifications and experience, you shouldn’t have much of an issue when it comes to finding a reputable translation service provider. Check out Tembua’s website at, send an email to, or give us a call at 952-435-8178 if you’d like to learn more about working with a full-service linguistic service provider.