Selecting a Translator
There are obvious ways, of course, such as knowing a reliable language professional from previous assignments. But what if you do not? Then, you are down to doing what you have to do when selecting a contractor for any other task. You must analyze your requirements, determine the level of service you require, go out to the market, collect information on potential service providers, and make your selection. For example, if you have a few lines of text between two people communicating through a dating service, a person that can write both languages is sufficient. On the other hand, if it is an industrial specification, a contract, or an annual report, you need a specialized professional. To find one, you can go through an agency in which case you initiate a corporate contractor selection process that you are well familiar with. You have to hire an agency when you have high-volume requests and/or multiple languages. If the amount of work that you have can reasonably be managed by a single professional and if you are not averse to saving money while maintaining quality, you might decide to find an individual translator. Before you go ahead with the actual selection, there are some important questions to answer: If you answered "no" to any of the above questions, outsource to an agency: it will make your life easier, albeit at a price. If you decide to go with an individual, you have several selection criteria to consider: Having selected a translator, offer him or her the job, and if it should be turned down because the deadline is too tight or the subject matter unfamiliar, make sure you keep that person's contact information for later. This is a true professional, not some passer-by looking to make a quick buck. This person's reputation is more precious to him or her than money.