It’s not the technology, stupid!

 

Let me say that I do like technology. Even if I am not a techy, I am happy when I can use technology to speed up my work, and to automate processes, in my professional and personal life. But I take it as a personal insult when I have to stop using my brain.

Since I have never worked much with translation companies and big LSPs, I had only glimpses of the newest Translation Management Systems until recently. In the past few years, also investment companies started to use TMS to manage multi-lingual content and translation workflow.

What are cloud-based TMS? Translation management can be defined as the automation of the translation process. It should eliminate repetitive “manual” tasks and increase efficiency through project management functions, incorporating translation memories, and storing information.

What do they promise then? Continua la lettura di It’s not the technology, stupid!

Translator in Wonderland

 

Guest post by Teresa Cavalla***

When I first started moving into freelancing, I attended thousands of courses on how to stand out in the profession.

So I started to realize that I was facing an amazing world in which I could choose when, where, and who to work with. I had to find my niche, to market my brand, to apply to translation agencies (a lot of agencies on the market!) or to contact private clients and… everything seemed so easy!

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But when I started facing reality, things turned out to be a little more complicated. So, as many other newbies, I sent many curriculum vitae without having a strategy. My core thought was that I had to accept everything in order to make my new profession start. So every time I could get in touch with a translation agency I felt like a 6 years old child waiting for the mark from her teacher. Continua la lettura di Translator in Wonderland

Last night a DA saved my life

Changing home is always a shock.  Moving to a new house is the third most traumatic thing after death and divorce, experts said. Moving to another country is not easier, even if you wish it. You need to do a lot of paperwork, find a house, open a bank account, register at the town council, buy a stable Internet connection and, yes, find a doctor.

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If you are a freelance, you may also need to register for VAT or open a new company in the country you are going to pay your taxes.

Now I am the owner and director of Financial Translation Hub Ltd.

New habits, new language, new faces around me.

I like it. Though it involves a lot of work and appointments. A lot of things to buy, to arrange, to do.

A few years ago, when I found myself overwhelmed by tasks and did not know from where to start, I discovered the GTD method. Today, after some years of practice, David Allen is saving my life for the second time. Or maybe the third.

Thanks to GTD, I have some spare time to write this blog!

Things are not perfect, yet. I need to improve, but the Getting-Things-Done approach helped me to clear my mind and decide my list of “priorities”. Hopefully, it may help other people who find themselves oppressed by tasks, ideas, appointments and really need to stop and reset.

It includes time management tips, but this is only a small part of it. You need to change your attitude. GTD helped me to clarify my objectives, collect ideas and tasks, both in my personal and professional life, and review them on a regular basis.

  “Your mind is like this water, my friend. When it is agitated, it becomes difficult to see. But if you allow it to settle, the answer becomes clear.” Bil Kean

Continua la lettura di Last night a DA saved my life

Why you should hire a truly specialised financial translator

Financial Reporting in Financial Times – Guest post by Richard O’Connor**

Financial Communication – “Driving the Brand”

First Impressions last and for Italian groups operating on the international arena their primary focus is to present themselves seamlessly to the outside world.  A company’s image is something which must be consistently reflected across all communications released to a public which expects high levels of transparency. Financial communication is just another aspect of this and in fact encompasses a range of important documents sanctioned by the Board for a wide-ranging stakeholder base – from bankers and investors, clients and suppliers, overseas regulation, statutory and fiscal compliance etc..

The Annual Report is the principal communication document reporting on the Financial Year based on statutory, regulatory and accounting requirements, embracing the main operational and business aspects and enabling informed decision-making by the readers of the report.  The Annual Report also includes additional material considered beneficial for various stakeholder groups and in recent years has been influenced by the concept of Integrated Reporting.

The International Integrated Reporting Council’s Framework (IIRC) was issued in December 2013 and provides companies with a starting point to drive integrated thinking and reporting. The objective of Integrated Reporting is to enhance the way organisations think, plan and report their business.

In addition, large and medium-sized multinationals widely promote Social Responsibility through the Annual Corporate Responsibility Report (CRS), mainly due to increasing consumer awareness and often driven by social media and in particular the “Millennial Generation”.

It’s clear that financial communication, reporting and brand image are intrinsically intertwined!!

 

Developing Corporate Identity – avoid the “Perception Gap” among an International Audience

Continua la lettura di Why you should hire a truly specialised financial translator

Is Your Content Translation-Ready?

12 tips to improve your multilingual content

Over the past few years, the volume of content produced and translated has dramatically increased, especially online.  This is specifically true for the business and financial industry. Just think of all the comments written on Brexit, Trump and the US Election, and central bank policies in 2016. Almost every global asset management company has a blog, or an insights and research section in various languages on the website.

Commentaries and articles are written both by English natives and by professionals using English as a second language and lingua franca.

More often than not, authors seem to forget that their documents will serve as a base for content in other languages, and that they will be translated. Professional specialised translators do their best to convey the right message in the target language, though a quality translation depends also on how well the original text is written. A document full of spelling mistakes and cultural connotations, without structure or with ambiguous expressions does not help the translation and communication process. On the contrary, a well-written piece will convince your audience, increase conversions, and it may help avoiding litigation and costly mistakes. Moreover, you will not waste time and money with revisions, reduce turnaround time, as well as the chance of misunderstandings.

So, why not thinking global from the start, planning ahead and writing with your international reader in mind?

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How to improve the quality of the source text

I translate many blog posts on market outlook, fund performance and the asset management industry into Italian. Some are very well written and easy to read, while others contain spelling mistakes, vague concepts and strong cultural connotations.

Easier to read means easier to translate. In simple terms, authors should simplify their English.

Here is a short checklist that may help polishing a text before sending it to translation: Continua la lettura di Is Your Content Translation-Ready?

The Whys and Hows of Translation Style Guides. A Case Study.

Last week, a marketing manager of a global investment company called me. He was referred to me by a colleague. They are launching the company’s website in Italy and had it translated into Italian by a global translation company. However, they were not convinced of the Italian translation and asked me for an opinion and for a review.

I started reading the translations. I could not find big mistakes, such as grammar or spelling. The main issue was that the text sounded too much like a translation. Sometimes I could not even understand the Italian without reading the English source. This lead to various misinterpretations. Moreover, it was translated literally, and Website menus and buttons were too long for the Internet layout.

It was evident that nobody visited the English website before or during the translation process. You could understand it from naïve mistakes, where charts were confused with tables, buttons mistaken for menus, and the translated metaphors had nothing to do with the image shown online.

Translators were not informed (and probably did not ask) about the intended destination, the target reader, the “ideal” client of the website. Who was going to read and visit it? Institutional or retail investors? Should the language be easy to understand for everybody, or specifically directed to investment professionals. What is the brand “tone”, formal or informal?

A 20 minute call with the client’s local team was enough to understand their expectations and draft a very short “style guide” for an effective translation into Italian: words not to be translated, reference materials, a description of the market they wanted to reach in order to launch their products in Italy. A professional translator can start from such information to hone the language for the purpose.

When talking about style guides or manuals of style, you may think they are too academic, while a simple short guide for effective writing is a valuable reference for translators and does not need to be too complicated. You can combine this guide with glossaries and reference material to do a better job, a translation that does not sound like a translated text, but as an original document improving the quality of the message, increasing the audience engagement, and even cutting costs.

WHY… a style guide?

Continua la lettura di The Whys and Hows of Translation Style Guides. A Case Study.

Top 10 Sources for Financial News

Whether you are browsing your Facebook news feed, scanning tweets or speed-reading the daily newspaper, you are bombarded with information, data, and opinions. For a financial translator, keeping up-to-date with the latest news is part of the job. You need to know what is going on in the world, how many times the Fed is going to raise interest rates this year, the volatility of the Chinese stock market or the strength of the US dollar. Did they approve any new regulations for banks or investment companies? New accounting standards? Even when you are translating an article for the web, you may need to know if a company is going public, is launching a new product on the market, or published better-than-expected results.

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The sources of information on the Web abound, and you may often find it difficult to separate wheat from the chaff, or to focus your attention.

When I look for financial or market news, I usually visit these websites. I hope you can find them useful too. Continua la lettura di Top 10 Sources for Financial News

Not What You Think It Is!

When I say I am an English>Italian financial translator, most people shudder. They imagine me at my desk translating annual reports and crunching numbers all the time. Actually, this is only a marginal part of my business. Financial translation comprises many different sub-sectors and areas that sometimes overlap, including insurance or legal concepts.

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Looks like Yoda at a museum?!? It may be not what you think it is
The Triad: Accounting + Economics + Finance

Accounting focuses on communicating a company’s financial information. An investor may use accounting to see whether a company has recorded past financial success and to predict what the company will look like in the future. Financial statements are drafted under a standardized set of accounting laws, which allows comparing companies and their financial health (International Financial Reporting Standards – IFRS). Continua la lettura di Not What You Think It Is!

Long Live the Press Release

Financial communication: how clients can help translators convey the right message

Most people think that financial translation mainly regards annual reports and financial statements. As a financial translator specialising in investments and asset management, accounting is a marginal part of my translation business. More often, I translate market commentaries and press releases communicating financial data and company’s results.

A press release – or media release, or video release – is a written or recorded communication directed at the news media for the purpose of announcing something newsworthy. It is an important tool of corporate communication. Continua la lettura di Long Live the Press Release

The Sorrows of Young Financial Translator

At the beginning of a new year, we all start with brilliant ideas and good intentions. To go regularly to the gym or yoga classes, to use that software in order to be productive, to travel more, and so on. However, year-end resolutions often fail after a few weeks because they do not emerge from a firm belief of change and innovation. They are often driven by calendar, not by deep motivation. To find inspiration, I went through my collection of articles, videos and podcasts on financial translation that I am sharing with you in this post. I am motivated to be special, what about you?

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How I started, my daily routine and market trends

Interview on Marcel Solè’s blog on my career as a financial translator, my working day, and my opinion on industry trends.

Financial Translations: Tips for Beginners

In this article, Yelena Pestereva underlines the importance of specialisation, suggests not to trust dictionaries and to take every opportunity to expand your knowledge.

Some hints on how to be a financial translator

Alan Clayman - Some hints on how to be a financial translator - YouTube 2016-01-04 11-28-04

Can you distinguish an ETF from a CDS? And when would you use euro rather than EUR? These are some of the underlying questions behind the skills of a financial translator. How to acquire the skills to work in the field and… why bother?

Youtube video published on 27 November 2013 – Financial translator Alan Clayman gave a lively short lecture at the ITA conference. Continua la lettura di The Sorrows of Young Financial Translator