How to Ensure Technical Documents are Translated Correctly

technical document translation

To produce technical documentation that can be easily translated requires precise guidelines, and producing high-quality writing means following very specific rules. In terms of translating those technical documents, a translator must be familiar with the technical writing process and standards of the particular industry.

A technical report must be clear and concise for the reader to understand it, regardless of the language in which it is written, this is the starting point to ensure the technical documents are translated correctly.

Translating technical documentation can be difficult, especially when you’re working on tight deadlines and managing material across multiple product lines. Here are the main steps to follow to ensure a technical document is accurately translated.

Understand technical jargon

Ensuring that your industry’s specialized language is translated as fluently and clearly as possible is arguably the most important aspect of translating technical documentation. The vocabulary used in the field is extremely important to the text being translated. As a result, you’ll need a translator who is familiar with both the language they’re translating into and your industry. The reason technical translations are needed in a variety of roles is due to the complexity of technical jargon and the specific scientific understanding of technology that goes into writing a technical document.

The use of specific technical words may also differ from one industry to the next, which is why a glossary of technical terms should be known in its entirety. Some organizations will have their specific glossary of terms, in which case, this needs to be provided with the document to ensure technical documents are translated correctly.

Hire a bilingual translator

Quality translation requires exceptional linguistic skills to ensure accuracy, fluency, and reliability. Hiring a bilingual translator requires sourcing a professional who speaks both the original language and the one that needs to be translated. Someone with a general understanding of the language may not be qualified or experienced enough to effectively translate the technical document.

Technical writers tend to use long phrases and sophisticated jargon. As a result, it is up to the translator to smooth down these sentences to generate unambiguous claims. This includes avoiding language that is only known to the native speaker and using complicated words that could be misinterpreted.

Automate the process

Technical documents include an index, table of content, and references that can be easily automated with the right software. By using specific software – if you know the correct format to be used – you can have certain sections of the document automatically translated. Of course, this depends on how complicated the original technical document is and whether the software has the functionality for the new language that it needs to be translated into.

These documents may also contain specific references and concepts that some native speakers may not understand. Before translating any technical document, it’s important to first go through the report to identify cultural familiarities that may not be appropriate for the overall quality of the report.

Translating technical materials necessitates a thorough understanding of the subject matter as well as a knowledge of technical report writing norms. The correct combination of planning as well as competent translators not only speeds up the process but also saves time and money when translating technical documents.

To find out more about BeTranslated’s technical translation services, contact us for a free, no-obligation quote.