Best Practices

Why You Should Outsource Translation Services

]If you are tasked with finding translators for your organization’s localization, your logical choices are to hire them yourself or outsource translation services. Of course, the latter option presents a much higher up-front cost. But you can’t ignore the long-term costs associated with such a complicated endeavor as localization.
Gabriel Fairman
2 min

If you are tasked with finding translators for your organization’s localization, your logical choices are to hire them yourself or outsource translation services. Of course, the latter option presents a much higher up-front cost. But you can’t ignore the long-term costs associated with such a complicated endeavor as localization. You’re looking at much more than just signing on some translators.Be ready to account for a heavy management burden, high-stakes quality assurance, a complicated ecosystem of content and collaborators, highly technical integration demands, and the fundamental issue of scalability as you continue to expand. Consider very carefully how to move forward with your translation and localization projects with the whole big, colorful picture in mind.

How Small Organizations Can Benefit from Outsourced Translation Services

The size of your organization often influences the way you approach translation. But we’re considering the same basic issues regardless. (After all, localization drives the metamorphosis of a small company into a larger one.) Let’s look at these considerations for smaller-scale organizations first.


Translation is a profession. Being a native speaker doesn’t make you a translator. Nonetheless, there is often the temptation for a small organization to make their native speaker do double duty by piling translating on top of whatever responsibilities that person already has. It’s not effective personnel management, and it’s very unlikely to result in good translations. Partnering with a language service provider (LSP) gives you access to an entire team of professionals who know how to produce consistent, high-quality translations. They will know your industry, they will have an intimate knowledge of the tools of their trade, and they will be able to work on a team, alongside managers, editors, and other stakeholders.


A big problem with translations by your bilingual accountant, for example, is that you don’t really know what you’re getting. That’s not because your accountant will aim to deceive you or because their language skills are subpar; you don’t know if they speak a nonstandard dialect or aren’t aware of the latest terminology in your field, or they might not even know enough about your brand, your product, and your target market to translate thoughtfully.The challenge when you outsource your translation is that you still don’t know what you’re getting right away. There are a few signs of a reliable translation partner you should look for:

  • Intentional translator-project matching—Some translators will be better qualified to work on your projects than others, and your work should be routed to them.
  • Radical transparency—You should be able to see who is translating your work and what their qualifications are. You should be able to atch the progress of every project you hand over for translation in real time as well.
  • Linguistic assets—Consistency among translations and carefully chosen terminology are hallmarks of quality translation. They are made possible through a single source of truth, which consists of translation memory, term bases, style guides, and other support material.


It takes significant infrastructure to support the tools that make quality translation possible, as well as dedicated personnel such as developers and managers. In other words, it takes a lot of money. If you don’t have a localization platform of your own, it makes much more sense to outsource it than to create your own—it makes sense for both your time and financial investments. It’s good to keep in mind that you are investing in the global future of both your product and your brand. When you invest the right way, your money buys a lot.

Scalability and Sustainability

Growth can be a risky time for UX and brand reputation if the new demands on your organization get out of control. But the right outsourced partner is inherently prepared for the extra work as you grow.It’s one thing to marshal the time and resources to translate your product into a second language for a shiny new target market. It’s another thing to maintain the resources to localize ongoing updates—and to do all of this for the swath of markets and languages you might have on the horizon. An expert LSP can transition with you without showing any strain as they meet the new demands going forward.

How Large Organizations Can Maximize Translation Vendor Services

Large companies need to be ready to anticipate common localization challenges so they’ll have the best solutions in place from the start.


Translation work may come in big waves as projects arise at an uneven pace. It’s difficult and profoundly uneconomical to try to keep in-house translators busy when the waves subside while ensuring that they have the time and resources for the peaks. In reality, you don’t need to insource translations. What you need is a senior linguist to serve as a language manager for each of your key markets. That way you have somebody who is intimate with the market culture and with your product at the same time. You don’t need it for every single language, but if you have a large volume of translations for your main markets, it’s easier to have someone at hand instantly when there’s a mission-critical issue to decide. Then, you can comfortably outsource the translation work and the management hassles that come with it.


One of the advantages a large organization has is that a large amount of material actually enables data-driven quality assurance. Besides having a single source of truth and all the other benefits of outsourcing, an LSP can use the growing records of approved translations to analyze quality. A new-generation localization platform can track progress on a granular level, assessing the number and type of edits performed by individual translators and converting those data points into a comparable score.Besides allowing you to track the qualitative progress of your localization campaign, this system increases accountability throughout the workflow. You can control style and terminology—your core assets. You can be involved in maintaining your translation memory with ease, and you can have people involved in training and communicating with linguists in the midst of projects. The right brand of localization outsourcing lets you stay in control even while providing speed and quality for any amount of content.


Going it alone can cost a bundle and still have questionable results. The cost of technology can be high, and then you have to recruit and manage translators. If you choose that route, you need to do it for the right reasons; don’t be naive enough to think that you’ll figure it all out as you go. Don’t put yourself in such a weak position. As a professional, you need to know exactly how you intend for your workflow to go. You need to be able to anticipate obstacles and build your entire localization team for sure-fire results. A good LSP will help you do all of this.

Scalability and Sustainability

Flexibility is key to growth. The workflow pipeline has to expand as you grow and as the work increases—all while keeping the existing flows intact. Term bases and style guides have to be created and maintained, and new personnel have to be onboarded without interrupting any of the above. An experienced and responsive LSP can not only take on the additional work, but it will also act as your partner to ensure that all aspects can expand seamlessly. The right partner will be honest about what is working and what is not and offer the transparency for you to see for yourself.

How You Can Get Started with Translation Services

Outsourcing translation services is a big leap of trust. Bureau Works offers a free version of our complex platform so you don’t have to commit to anything sight unseen. No outsourced translation service is going to be perfectly in step on day one, but by communicating from the start, refining, training, and learning, we develop a cutting-edge localization ecosystem together. And it’s one that captures your organization’s unique goals, products, workflows, and markets. A competent and reliable partner can relieve you of the immensely demanding and highly specialized tasks that will make or break your global success. And you can keep focusing on your critical strengths and responsibilities to support the company’s sexy updates.Bureau Workshas years of experience providing translation and localization services to organizations, large and small. Our centralized localization platform ensures scalable, sustainable translation services with radical transparency.Contact our teamtoday to find out more.

Collaborative translation is a powerful tool for your business if you’re looking to expand to new global markets. By coordinating a team of professionals who work together in real-time, you can quickly deliver high quality translations that resonate with local audiences.

But what if you don't know how to synchronize a large team's efforts? Or are you‌ struggling to find the right software for a well-coordinated translation process? Well, look no further! In this guide, you'll learn all the know-how's of collaborative translation to bring your brand to global audiences.


  1. What is collaborative translation?
  2. Why seamless translation collaboration is important
  3. Best practices for collaborative translation and global market success

What is collaborative translation?

Collaborative translation is when multiple people simultaneously work together to translate content. A collaborative translation process often makes use of specialized tools and software to make sure the translation is quick, accurate, and consistent.

  • Example: Let's say you're a B2B SaaS company looking to translate your marketing materials into a new language to connect with potential clients abroad. Use collaborative translation to bring together translators, developers, and other specialists to translate content into many languages at once.

Your team can use a collaborative translation platform like Redokun to work on projects simultaneously. A coordinated workflow will make sure that your translations use the same terminology and style, improving the quality of the translated product for your target audiences.

Collaborative Translation vs. Crowdsourcing

People often confuse collaborative translation with crowdsourcing and think the two are the same. However, these approaches to translation are different.

Crowdsourcing is when a large group of people contributes translations, often through an open call or invitation by a company or author. Brands can turn to crowdsourcing, community translation, or volunteer translation when they are looking to reduce costs and accelerate the process, especially for large multi-language projects.

In crowdsourced translations, the contributors can be volunteer translators, subject matter experts, or just anonymous individuals online. In other words, you may not know who's worked on the translation and what their qualifications are. It makes crowdsourcing distinct from collaborative translation, where the team would be an established group of professionals you've selected

Why seamless translation collaboration is important

As a busy B2B/B2C marketing manager or project manager, you might ask yourself: Isn't the "divide and conquer" a better strategy when working on a translation or localization project? It seems logical that each project team member, including translators, designers, and editors, works on their tasks separately and step by step.

However, collaborative translation can help your team reap many benefits compared to a traditional approach to translation projects:

Reasons why seamless translation collaboration is important
  • Produce high-quality translations consistently. When your whole team works on a translation project simultaneously on one platform, it's easier to stay in context and keep track of the translation accuracy for every target language. On top of that, your team can conduct agile QA throughout the project cycle.
  • Faster turnaround times. By working together, your team can complete projects faster and more efficiently. Centralization saves a lot of time at every stage of translation. And since your team can work on more than one translation at a time, you can publish your translated content in several new markets at once.
  • Reduced costs. You get to improve efficiency while working with a smaller team of translators. The smaller and more coordinated the team, the less the risk of costly translation errors. It means reduced translation costs and better project budget compliance.
  • Increased flexibility. Collaborative translation allows your team to produce translations into many languages at once and easily make changes to any project document. You can conveniently engage in a feedback loop and guarantee a continuous localization process.
  • Better communication. Collaborative translation effectively brings all members of your localization team together on one platform. It helps you make sure that everyone is working toward the same goals ‌and simplifies overall localization management.

Six best practices for collaborative translation and global market success

To be great at collaborative translation, you need to approach it strategically. Even if you've never used this approach before, you can follow the six steps below to build an efficient collaborative translation workflow. And if you're already familiar with this method, these practices will help you improve the way you collaborate on any translation projects.

Six best practices for collaborative translation for your global business success

1. Work out a detailed project plan

Before you start working on translations together, you need a clear-cut project plan. You should first identify the following items.

  • Project timeline: Define crucial deadlines, project milestones, and the overall project duration.
  • Translation volume and key deliverables: Calculate the general word count, and determine the workload for every language pair if you translate into multiple languages.
  • Project budget: Keep in mind possible added and hidden translation costs.
  • Project team: Define what kind of specialists you need: translators, editors, proofreaders, etc. Will you need to find external translators? Consider all your HR needs in advance.
  • Your approach to the translation process: How much do you want to rely on machine translation? At what point will you edit translated strings? Answer all these questions before you go on.
  • Quality assurance protocol: Establish an efficient QA procedure for all the language pairs you're working on.

It may sound like a handful but the more detailed the plan, the more streamlined the translations will be down the road. Besides, you can already use Redokun to boost this stage of the localization process!

Redokun is a translation management system you can use to automate, coordinate, and optimize your translation processes from content creation to publication.

Redokun simplifies your project planning. In particular, you can use the tool to:

  • Monitor your ongoing translations easily. Keep track of all of your translation files and projects across multiple languages in one space, and check their progress at a glance.
Redokun Document Detail Page
  • Meet deadlines with digest emails. Redokun will send you daily or weekly email digests to update you on the progress of translations. From there, you can initiate one-click reminders to your translators who are potentially falling behind schedule.
  • Making budget planning easier. Redokun has a transparent, scalable pricing structure that will cover exactly the volume of work your project needs.
Redokun is an easy-to-use tool that requires no onboarding. Your team can start using all the system’s features right away. During your project planning stage, you won’t need to factor in a lengthy training period to introduce team members to the tool.

2. Divide tasks and assign responsibilities the smart way

Good collaboration is impossible without a well-planned distribution and organization of roles and tasks. Ensure that every team member is on the same page and understands their respective responsibilities.

For example, the project managers should divide ‌translation tasks among translation team members according to their language proficiency, area of expertise, or subject matter knowledge.
  • On Redokun, you can invite translators to work on different language pairs and content types depending on their skills. All you need to do is enter the translator's email. The software will send them an email invitation and let you know once they've started translating the file.
  • You can also invite several translators to work on one document.
How to invite translators to Redokun

To maximize the efficiency of project management and task division, establish a clear structure of your workflow. Make sure all your pages, files, and folders are well organized and team members know where to find necessary resources for their respective tasks. A centralized, cloud-based storage for all your documents is a must.

  • Redokun is a cloud-based software that makes file management easy. You can create folders and customize permission settings for multiple users for better organization. No more need to look for spreadsheets and lost documents scattered around different digital locations.
  • Don't forget to make the most of the Reporting Dashboard. It shows you the status of the translation project and helps you see how users distribute tasks (for example, what methods they use to translate different content segments).
Redokun Dashboard with translation statistics

3. Enhance the collaborative translation process with clear communication

It's important to have open communication channels among all team members in your translation project, including internal and external translators. For a successful collaboration effort, you need a shared communication space to:

  • Conduct regular check-ins.
  • Discuss translation options and other aspects of the working process.
  • Update and adjust requirements and guidelines.
  • Maintain feedback loops.
It's up to you to choose between email, messengers, or tools like Google Drive or Slack to keep your collboarative operations flowing. However, using multiple channels for different aspects of the project can get messy. It's harder to manage your team and make sure all collaborators are up to date on the ongoing translation tasks.

You can avoid these potential problems by centralizing all your communications and project management. With translation software like Redokun, you can manage, translate, communicate, and collaborate — all in one place.

  • Translate content in context. Your translators or editors can use page previews in Web Editor to understand the context of the text while working on it.
  • Work together in real-time. Use Redokun as a full-scale collaborative translation platform. It enables real-time cooperation among your team members, improving efficiency and reducing communication errors.
  • Use comments, mentions, and notifications to exchange feedback quickly. Redokun's Web Editor is a convenient place to stay in touch and discuss your translation progress every step of the way.
Collaboration feature in Redokun
  • Create a hybrid workflow. Work with your in-house teams or external translators to suit different localization project formats and scalability needs.

4. Use machine translation and translation memory tools

Computer-assisted translation tools are a great addition to human translation. Machine translation (MT) helps your collaborators speed up the localization process by automating translation. Of course, it doesn't have the quality of a human professional translation — it’s more like a helping hand that's always there to facilitate the translation of complex phrases or new terms.

  • Redokun is integrated with two Machine Translation tools: Google Translate and DeepL. Translation suggestions by these two tools pop up right below where the translator should key in the translation, as shown here.

To enhance collaboration even further, consider using translation memory tools. They ensure consistency and save translation software users a lot of time.

Translation memory (TM) is a translation technology that stores previously translated sentences or phrases as segments and creates a unique database for your localization projects. You can reuse your translation to increase efficiency and consistency in ongoing and future translations.

With Redokun as your collaborative translation platform, you can leverage TM to:

  • Consistently translate any repeated word, phrase, or sentence across different language pairs and documents. It's especially important for translating technical terms, marketing slogans, CTAs, and other catchphrases. Translation memory helps you stay consistent in your marketing messaging.
  • Pre-translate your entire documents. Combine TM matches from your previous translations with Machine Translation to get a fully pre-translated document even before your team gets to work.
  • Manage your translation memory database. Import and customize your TM database to further improve translation quality and consistency.
”The speed of translation is quite impressive in that it doesn’t take [much time], maybe a couple of minutes when you translate from English to eight markets. I think that’s what I’m most impressed by.”

Read more about how Kenni and the marketing team at Rockfon increased their translation productivity by 70% using translation memories and other Redokun features

5. Use glossaries and style guides

Glossaries and style guides are valuable resources your team can use for reliable reference.

A glossary is a list of terms and their corresponding translations that are specific to a company or industry.

A style guide outlines the preferred tone, voice, and style for a company's marketing materials across markets and languages.

Your collaborators can refer to these resources when they’re not sure about a translation. For example is when they're deciding how to translate a company abbreviation, whether to the Oxford comma, or choosing the right tone to address customers, etc. No more ambiguity about linguistic, stylistic, and cultural aspects of your translations.

  • Use Redokun's glossary feature to create a glossary and style guide that outlines rules for spelling, grammar, punctuation, terminology, and tone specific to your project.
Redokun glossary feature preview

6. Continuously review and revise

A key benefit of a collaborative translation platform is the ability to review and revise translations in an agile and efficient manner. By involving multiple specialists in the process of editing and QA, you can guarantee accuracy and consistency in the translated content at every stage of the project.

To implement effective review and revision procedures in your collaborative translation projects, it is important to:

  • Plan for review and revision in advance. Identify who will be responsible, set the timeline, and use specific tools.
  • Consider involving in-country reviewers who are familiar with the local market and culture to ensure that the translations are accurate and appropriate for the target audience.
  • Perform regular QA checks. They should include consistency in terminology and formatting, and verify that the translations are free from grammatical errors and typos.
Pro-tip: Ever experienced the headache of having to update a translation that’s already 70% done when there is a last-minute change to the source document?

With Redokun’s revision feature, you don’t have to spend hours poring over Excel sheets and comparing files to spot the places where new words have been added or sentences have been changed. Just upload the latest document version and the system will identify new text that needs translating — saving your team’s time and effort while keeping previous translations intact.


Collaborative translation is an excellent approach if you want to improve the consistency of your translations, reduce costs, and establish a strong presence in global markets.

The key to seamless collaboration is a combination of careful planning, role distribution, agile QA, and smart use of translation software.

Make Redokun part of your collaborative translation efforts and enhance the pace of your global business growth‌. Start your 14-day free trial today and benefit from a quicker and more streamlined translation workflow.

Till next time,


Gabriel Fairman
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