Translation Memory

“A translation memory is a database that stores sentences, paragraphs or segments of text that have been translated before.” – SDL Trados

Translation memory software is a tool used by PLG to lower translation costs, decrease turnaround time, and increase quality assurance. Imagine you were to translate the following 54 word text:

If each word costs 10 cents, this job would be $5.40. However, with translation memory, the job is $4, a 30% of saving in this specific case. Small savings like these accumulate and lead to substantial cost reductions on large and repeated projects. We will show you exactly how this is done.

What is Translation Memory (TM)?

TM is a database created by Trados, a translation software application. As a human translates your documents, Trados creates and maintains the TM database. It stores all translated segments (sentences, paragraphs, terminology) and checks to see if they are reused in new projects. At PLG, we create and maintain TM databases for a single industry or for individual customers.

Translation Memory Software: SDL Trados

PLG purchases the translation software licensing from SDL Trados, an industry leader in translation software development and services. Each project manager at PLG is required to complete rigorous training on the software to maximize benefits for customers. It is the translation software tool used for practically all projects we handle. 

How Does It Work?

After receiving client files PLG project managers will import the client files into Trados. Trados will analyze the text, compare new projects to old ones, and find repeated phrases and terms.  The results of the analysis will be used in the quotation process, so that translated text receive a significant discount.

As human translators complete your projects, they update your specific TM database. As the number of completed projects increase, translation quality and consistency are enhanced. Costs and turnaround time also decrease significantly.

What Benefits Will Clients Experience?

Lower Cost – Trados can tell us how many words have already been translated in the past. Clients receive a 66% discount on all repeated words.

Higher Quality – with access to all previously translated content, a translator can be assured his or her interpretation is consistent across time. Additionally, TM helps ensure that on large projects requiring multiple people, interpretations are consistent across translators.

Faster Delivery Time – TM recycles previously translated content and allows translators to deliver on projects faster. The increase of both speed and quality allow us to free up resources and support other projects clients may send our way.

Machine translation and computer-aided human translation

Trados is a great tool used to aid human translators in reducing the labor required for translation. Since all translated segments will be reused, the consistency of the translation for high volume projects will be ensured. All projects completed by PLG are done by human translators with the aid of Trados, computer software.

It is critical to differentiate machine translation and computer-aided translation. An example of machine translation is Google Translate. There are no humans involved, all translation is done through artificial intelligence and technology. It is useful when only rough understanding is necessary or if budgets are extremely tight. Examples of this include casual emails, high volume document reviews, consumer travel aid, etc. In our opinion, machine translation has not advanced far enough to handle liable content with accuracy and cultural consideration. Therefore, if you are translating sensitive information that affects your company’s image and/or liability, you should not use machine translation.  

Below is a video showing how we use Translation Memory.