As a Human Resource Specialist, you appreciate the importance of communicating clearly with employees. An employee can only do a good job if the requirements of that job are spelled out in a language the employee understands. Employees will only take advantage of workplace assistance and optional training programs if information about them is accessible. For many workers, offering a translated copy of the employee handbook or benefits guide will make all the difference in the world. Will you make the right choice when it comes to choosing between professional translation services and the alternatives?
Knowing the importance of translating employee documents is the first step. The next step is deciding how to go about getting the translation work done. Should you hire a full-time translator? Most companies wouldn’t have enough work to justify a full-time position.
Should you temporarily reassign a bilingual employee to do the job? This might seem like an economical option, but how will you know if the translation is accurate? Your employee may have a conversational grasp of the language. He may even be competent enough to direct employees in his second language. But is he really skilled enough to be entrusted with the translation of materials surrounding job requirements, policies, employee compensation and benefits, or disciplinary actions?
In some companies, translation is assigned to an unqualified supervisor or manager who may just delegate the work to a bilingual employee or hire an acquaintance to do the work as an odd job. Again the question of competence arises. There is also the matter of discretion and confidentiality. Can a subordinate or a casual acquaintance really be expected to maintain a professional work ethic?
The most economical solution is to procure professional translation services. The work of a professional translator is backed by a proven track record. A professional service can provide accurate work in multiple languages and can ensure that digital documents are formatted for compatibility with your current software. Professionally translated documents are discoverable should you need them as evidence in a court of law. Your translator will respect confidentiality and sign a non-disclosure agreement if needed.
You may think you are saving money if you cut corners when translating employee documents but, before you make a decision, why not ask for a price quote? If you figure in the potential costs of an error in translation, and if you think about the convenience of establishing an ongoing relationship with a professional team that can also provide interpretation services for meetings and conferences, you can’t afford not to choose professional translation services!