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How to improve your translation speed and quality

How to improve your translation speed and quality
translation speed
(Last Updated On: August 15, 2019)

One of the main goals of a professional translator is to improve his translation speed. A second one is to improve the translation quality. Here are some ways to improve both translation speed and quality of your work.

How to improve translation speed and quality

Computer assisted translation has undergone a lot of transformation over the past few decades. Currently there are many tools to choose from such as grammar checkers, spell checkers, translation memory tools. Still, using such tools do not guarantee high quality translation output. Even sophisticated programs like Google Translate deliver poor translations. The best way to ensure both translation speed and quality output is a combination of a techno-savvy translator and proper planning.

improve translation quality

Effective Language Applications and Programs

Here are some helpful language tools to improve translation quality and speed:

  • Spell checker
  • Grammar checker
  • Terminology database and manager
  • E-Dictionaries
  • Terminology databases
  • Translation memory applications

Such tools are a great help for a translator and by using them you will be able to improve your translation speed. Proper usage of such tools will also improve your translation quality.

Creation of Content

The best content is written in simple phrases and short sentences. It is well known that clarity and simplicity of input is the first way to speed up the process of translation. Organization is the next step. Ensure your work area is arranged in a logical order. Finally, review and edit your translation.

Collaborate effectively with the proofreader

Talk to your editor / proofreader and explain to them what you want and require. This way, you allow them to plan ahead and prepare for the proofreading of the document after you submit it. This shortens the entire process of translation. Other things you can add to speed up the process includes glossary of terms and support material.

why proofreading is needed
secret to translation speed

The secret to speed and accuracy

Translation tasks require a lot of attention and concentration to avoid any mistakes. It is a time-consuming task. A translation company cannot afford to spend a lot of time on a single assignment since it would significantly impact the productivity of the company. With affected productivity, the reputation and market standing of the company will also get a hard blow. Some organizations follow the concept of speed over perfection, but translation providers have to be both speedy and perfect.

Translation of literature is usually required for different procedures or for correspondence with clients that do not speak the language. These situations are to be responded to spontaneously and hence, companies are expected to be quick and efficient. The faster the translator is, the more assignments he will be able to deliver, and the better would be the productivity of the company.

However, a break is inevitable. No matter what you are doing, your brain and body will always require time to get a little relaxation. In fact, to deliver translations with utmost perfection, the translator must be well rested, composed and comprehensive. Speed alone is nothing but a rush towards completion. But in translation, completion of a task with professional accuracy is unquestionable.

Translation memory applications

The two main software tools currently used by some providers are Translation Memory Tools and Machine Translation. Yes, some companies use machine translation. We do not however, and don’t encourage anyone to use tools such as Google Translate in their work. CAT tools and translation memories are a better option as they are a great help in the process of translation, however; such tools do not replace the human translator.


  • Handles technical documents with special vocabulary
  • Consistently translates common terminology, definitions and phrases.
  • Have a variety of formats that will automatically translate files
  • Speed up the process of translation because of their memory features
  • Reduce the cost of long term translation projects


  • They are prone to errors and require post translation editing
  • The software don’t support all formats of documentation
  • They are expensive
translation memory applications

Learn to type faster

In the translation industry, that kind of ‘conventional wisdom’ has to do with quality control in translation work. As with lots of other industries, one of the main pressures we translators are under is speed.

The amount that you can get as a professional translator directly relates to how much money you can make. But, there are several things that you can do to improve your translation speed without negotiating on quality. Here we list our favorite 5 to get you started.

  • The best way to boost your translation speed is to learn to type faster.
  • For many translators, having a peaceful, quiet environment to work, with minimal disturbances, will have a remarkable impact on their translation speed.
  • Give yourself an incentive to increase your speed.
  • Close your email and your social media sites and don’t open them until you’ve finished a full hour’s translation.
  • Consider using speech recognition tools to see if you can increase your translation speed.

The methods outlined above should improve your translation speed but also the quality of your translations. Got tips of your own? Let us know in the comments below and we will add them to this article.

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