Okodia’s professional translators do not just translate the content they receive as our quality standards and processes mean that they also usually review the work of other professionals. That is why we have decided to tell you three secrets about proofreading in the world of professional translation.
Types of proofreading
Sometimes people believe that professional translation work starts and ends with the translation. While that is of course an important part of the work, when the aim is to provide a high quality service, the text will go through a further proofreading stage before it is sent to the customer. They say that four eyes are better than two and that is true, so let us tell you about the types of professional proofreading that can be performed on translations.
Linguistic review of the translation
One of the first proofreading phases a text goes through is a linguistic review. The aim is to polish the text so that no errors get through and that it is easy to understand and reads well.
Professional review of the content
Specialised texts require specialised translators. At Okodia Translation Services we always choose the best professionals for each job and once they have produced the translation, another expert professional is responsible for reviewing it. At this point we analyse the accuracy of the content and the correct use of language and terminology.
We also review the style
Another important aspect when writing any text is the style. When reviewing the style, the focus is on the language used, the register, the internal structure of the text and the lexical and semantic content. During this type of review, the professional proofreader can use more appropriate terms, ones that are not as general, correct any potential grammatical errors, avoid the overuse of fillers and repetition or increase improve the flow of the text. For example, “follow the followers” sounds strange, even when it comes to more formal language, although we are probably only talking about the social media!
In addition, it is important to check the spelling in the text. This helps us to ensure that there are no punctuation errors and to avoid, for example, different comma styles being used in different parts of the text. This makes the content more uniform. It is not simply a case of ensuring that the apostrophes are in the right place. For example, did you know that there are strict rules about the order in which adjectives appear or that you should use an instead of a before some words that begin with a consonant? Or that some adverbs have the same form as adjectives, such as hard, fast and outside?
Thoroughness is key
It is important to be careful and thorough when proofreading the work of other professional translators. If you are critical of the work of another translator, make sure that the project manager or customer in question understands why. Examples of any mistakes made and the necessary corrections are often included to help with this. It is also important to mention any other circumstances that may have affected the quality of the translator’s work, such as inexperience in the subject matter or the complexity of the text itself. However, you can be sure that at Okodia we always choose the best specialised translators for the project in question. In the case of medical translations, we obviously only select medical translators that we know are going to be up to the task.
Keep an open mind
Being able to keep an open mind is hugely important for professional translators. Proofreading is also a great opportunity to learn from the work of others. You may always translate a phrase in a certain way but then see that another translator has actually expressed it in a different and more succinct way. Being open to learning new tricks and styles from peers is fantastic. In addition, you also avoid repeating past mistakes.
An assessment of the quality of the translation is very important
Provide a brief assessment of the quality of the translation. This may not be appropriate for direct customers, but it is common in translation agencies like ours so that we can learn more about the work carried out by colleagues. Even if you only write a couple of sentences, it will add value that your customers will appreciate. This is an opportunity to show why it was worth hiring you.
Sometimes people believe that professional translation work begins and ends with the translation. While that is of course an important part of the work, when the aim is to provide a high quality service, the text will go through a further proofreading stage before it is sent to the customer. They say that four eyes are better than two and that is true, so any document you receive will have gone through a translation (of course) and a detailed proofread by someone other than the original translator.