translation error costs

How to Avoid Translation Error Costs

(Last Updated On: December 7, 2018)

We all know that using a professional translation company can be of great benefit to your company regarding its expansion and eventually its profit. But, what happens when the use of a professional translation agency is not important to a company? Well, that’s when small or large losses appear, depending on the company size and profit, due to translation error costs.

Avoid translation error costs

The importance of translation

Usually, putting a price on the importance of translation determines businesses to use different resources as an alternative for professional language service providers, such as:

  • Machine translation (Google Translate, etc)
  • Translation crowd-sourcing
  • Translation clouds

Translation is an investment, and it should be treated like one as it is easier to avoid translation error costs than to try to fix one after the loss is already done.

translation errors
marketing mistakes

What are the costs of using bad translations?

Most of the times, translation error costs are:

  • Financial loss, for example when you invest in the production of a miss-translated packaging.
  • Customer loss, which is due to lower text quality in a product description, which leads also to financial loss.

The highest translation error costs of all time was related to a patient’s medical condition. This grave error was followed by a $17 million settlement. The patient’s medical chart which was written in Spanish included the word “INTOXICADO”, which was the word that got miss-translated. In Spanish, this word has more meaning than the word “intoxicated” in English. That’s why it needs to be accompanied by some explanations. Because of this error, the patient was wrongfully treated and thus resulted in him being quadriplegic. This grave error was followed by a $17 million settlement.

Translation Errors and Costs

Understanding how to speak two languages is not the same thing as understanding how to translate. Translation is a unique ability that experts work hard to develop. When evaluating translation, it is vital to recognize the difference between a preference choice and an error to avoid translation error costs. A translation error is a syntactic or spelling error, or a wrong word choice presented the source words’ meaning or the document’s target audience.  A preference choice is a term that the client prefers over others.  For instance, the words “agreement” or “contract” can both be translated into Spanish as “acuerdo” or “contrato.” Neither is necessarily incorrect; it is a matter of choice. A regional difference in language can also be mistaken as a glaring error.

We at USA Translate recommend, whether you’re a small or large business, that the best thing to do is to get in touch with a professional translation company, even for advice, as it will help a lot in the long run and you will be able to avoid translation error costs.

If you are in need of a translation, feel free to contact us at [email protected] for a free quote or further information about our translation services. Our extremely knowledgeable and responsive team is available 24 hours a day to help whenever you need it via Email or Live Chat.

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