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Chemical Firm Launches Revised Safety Standards in 16 Languages  A Translation Case Study

Chemical Firm Launches Revised Safety Standards in 16 Languages
A Translation Case Study

PROBLEM: When two companies in the chemical industry merged to form a new organization, the team had to make a lot of decisions on how best to unify the company. One of their biggest obstacles was that the two previous companies had completely different sets of safety standards. The team felt that neither set of safety standards seemed adequate for the new venture and it was clear that a new set of standards must be established. For a global company with offices in 140 countries, the massive impact of changing the safety standards meant that this project carried a great deal of risk. Changing the safety standards would mean training all team members company-wide to follow the new standards. To make things even more complicated, the new safety standards, web-based training courses, and supporting materials would need to be available in 16 languages.

RECOMMENDATION: The client required a language partner with extensive experience in both technical translation and digital production services, so they reached out to Techworld for assistance. After reviewing the content within the standards and supporting files, Techworld recommended an approach where the standard glossaries would be translated and approved by the client prior to translation of the full materials. The client’s feedback would be referenced throughout the translation process, allowing Techworld’s linguist team to deliver accurate and approved translations in less time.

IMPLEMENTATION: Starting with the most important English terms, each standard glossary was translated and proofread by Techworld linguists for each of the 16 languages. Then, the glossaries underwent in-country client review to prompt feedback on client safety terms. After the glossaries were complete, the rest of the safety materials were translated smoothly and accurately. Techworld consulted extensively with the client and designed a 16-step process flow customized to the client’s specific needs that included client communication and approval every step of the way.

RESULT: The client felt the initial recommendation to start with translation of the glossary was the key to success with this project. This preliminary work paved the way for quality translations and productive training for the employees. The fact that Techworld encouraged in-country review in the beginning of the project allowed for valuable feedback to be implemented when it mattered most, and delivery of approved translations in a tight schedule. To this day, the client continues to revise the safety standards and train their employees on new processes and procedures. As a vender-partner, Techworld is proud to be a part of such a global effort to ensure employee safety.

Does your organization have translation needs? Call us at +1 (248) 288-5900 or send us an email at info@techworldinc.com.

Metro-Detroit Automotive Supplier Empowers Employees to Collaborate Across Cultures  A Cultural Awareness Training Case Study

Metro-Detroit Automotive Supplier Empowers Employees to Collaborate Across Cultures
A Cultural Awareness Training Case Study

PROBLEM: An automotive supplier with offices in over 35 countries noticed that employees were struggling with cross-cultural communication and collaboration. Employees had trouble understanding and adapting to the work styles of colleagues from different cultural backgrounds and one break in communication in particular cost the company an important client. This was not an isolated incident – teams from all over the company were missing deadlines, exceeding budgets, and overall feeling frustrated by the challenge of cross-cultural communication. The company needed employees to be able to identify when a situation or incident was culturally driven and then know what steps to take next to clarify communication.

RECOMMENDATION: The client reached out to Techworld for assistance. Techworld recommended the client introduce a series of fully customized multi-cultural training courses that would educate employees and address the concerns of supervisors from any location. Since the situation was not isolated, all employees needed to have the opportunity to attend the sessions, so the client opted for virtual training.

IMPLEMENTATION: Techworld consulted extensively with the client and designed a seven-part series of 2-hour “lunch & learn” training sessions in the following cultures: German, Mexican, U.S., Italian, Indian, French, and Japanese. Two sessions were held per month, and employees were encouraged to sign up for as many training sessions as they pleased. All programs were offered in a live, virtual training format for convenience and access.

RESULT: The results of the training series were overwhelmingly positive. Participating employees found the experience invaluable. Employees now possessed the ability to recognize their own cultural errors. In addition, entire teams started talking about the ways in which cross-cultural communication would impact their projects. This training helped them uncover a set of tools to improve their communication and collaborate effectively with others. The company now offers this same cultural training series to all their employees annually.

Do you have cultural training needs for your employees? Call us at +1 (248) 288-5900 or send us an email at info@techworldinc.com.

Mid-Michigan Automotive Supplier Successfully Establishes English Training Program for Employees  A Language Training Case Study

Mid-Michigan Automotive Supplier Successfully Establishes English Training Program for Employees
A Language Training Case Study

PROBLEM: An automotive supplier located in Mid-Michigan employs over 100 employees who emigrated from Burma/Myanmar. More than 80% of the employees were initially at a complete beginner level with English. In other words, they were not able to say or read basic sight words, they had an extremely limited understanding of English grammar, their listening comprehension skills were very minimal, and their accents were too heavy to understand. As a result, training and basic communication on the plant floor were extremely challenging. Furthermore, the company could not guarantee the safety of their employees. Had things continued as they were, the consequences almost certainly would have been severe.

RECOMMENDATION: The client reached out to Techworld for assistance. Techworld recommended the client implement a fully customized English training course that would focus on the immediate needs of the non-English speaking population of employees. This project would enable the employer to implement a continuous English program employees could attend for as long as they wish and for new employees to begin as needed.

IMPLEMENTATION: Techworld consulted extensively with the client and designed both a comprehensive 16-week beginner English course and a 4-week train-the-trainer (T3) course with Techworld’s certified English as a Second Language (ESL) instructors. A complete curriculum focused on industry-specific vocabulary as well as real-life situations these employees encountered daily such as how to communicate important topics to their supervisor(s).

RESULT: As a result, the company now has an ongoing English training program offered to all non-native English-speaking employees. This program has enabled this population to stay gainfully employed, ensured safety within the workplace, and benefited the community as a whole.

Do you have language training needs for your employees? Call us at +1 (248) 288-5900 or send us an email at info@techworldinc.com.

So You Need to Learn a New Language

So You Need to Learn a New Language

Many of us have some degree of experience with another language, but not enough to use in the real world. Maybe you learned Spanish in high school, or maybe you took a stab at Japanese for that unexpected requirement in college. But did any of it stick?

When it comes to international business, there are many reasons that people need to learn a new language, but if you need to learn a new language, and fast, where do you even start?

At Techworld, we offer a number of personalized options for our students, tailored to their specific needs and circumstances. Some of the most commonly utilized types of classes are:

  • One to One (One student to an instructor)
  • Group (Two or more students to an instructor, similar to classroom lessons)
  • Immersion Style (A short-term/high-intensity program for students with limited availability)
  • Online (One student to an instructor via an online platform)
  • SureSpeak (Techworld’s option for self-paced lessons, with feedback from an instructor)

Regardless of your level, your schedule or your location, Techworld will be able to match you with the global language instructor who best suits your needs!

Check out our Academy of Language and Cultural Training to learn more about learning a new language.

Top 10 Tips for Working With Interpreters

Top 10 Tips for Working With Interpreters

Utilize these tips when working with an accredited Techworld Language Solutions interpreter. Our veteran interpreters will provide unobtrusive, fluent, and accurate on-site simultaneous and consecutive interpretation.

1 – Look at your audience and not the interpreter. As long as you notice occasionally that the interpreter is keeping up, maintaining eye contact is not necessary.

2 – Carry on naturally. There’s no need to apologize for using a phrase that may not translate; if the interpreter is unsure how to interpret a particular phrase, he/she will ask you to rephrase.

3 – Consecutive Interpretation. It may be easiest for you to speak sentence by sentence, or two sentences at a time. A brief pause between sentences will give the interpreter a moment to interpret without disrupting the flow of conversation.

4 – Simultaneous Interpretation. Speak without pause; however, in this instance, it is good practice if you speak slower than normal, allowing the interpreter time to keep up with what you’re saying. Remember to speak into the microphone to ensure the interpreter can clearly hear everything being said.

5 – Elaborate on acronyms. Spelling them out and explaining them carefully will help your audience understand you better.

6 – Meet with the interpreter beforehand. It allows you time to become comfortable with each other and to briefly discuss your presentation habits so the interpreter is as prepared as possible.

7 – Involve your interpreter in the translation of any materials that will be used during your presentation, even if this only means allowing the interpreter access to materials that have already been translated. By doing this, the interpreter will be able to interpret more closely between what you’re saying and what’s in the materials, thereby allowing the audience to more easily follow the presentation and materials. The more your interpreter knows beforehand, the better.

8 – Speak naturally and as though you’re not being interpreted. There’s no need to modify the way you speak to facilitate interpretation, because the interpreter will request you pause for a moment, so he/she can more fully interpret a difficult concept, phrase, or cultural reference as needed.

9 – Thoroughly discuss the scope of work with the interpreter and reiterate this more than once. By having a detailed knowledge of what will be expected of the interpreter, the work will go more smoothly, and there is much less cause for contention.

10 – When in doubt, ask!  Your Techworld Account Executive is available to you when you have questions or need additional information about working with accredited Techworld Interpreters.

Not sure what type of interpretation will work best for you? Read our Types of Interpretations blog to find out!

Types of Interpretation

Types of Interpretation

So you know you need an interpreter, but you never dreamed there would be so many options. Consecutive interpretation, simultaneous interpretation, whisper interpretation – what does it all mean, what’s the difference, and how do you know what you need?

Don’t worry, the experts at Techworld are here to help!

Whisper Interpretation

Whisper interpretation involves the interpreter sitting beside the listener(s), but within earshot of the speaker and quietly interpreting what the speaker is saying. There is a delay with this type of interpretation as the interpreter listens to the whole message and then interprets what the speaker has said.

Whisper interpretation is mostly one directional and is best used for lectures or training sessions. This type of interpretation is ideal for when there are only one or two listeners. Although whisper interpreters try to speak quietly, some background noise is to be expected, and in some cases may be distracting to the speaker or other listeners.

Recently, one of our clients asked us to provide an English into Spanish whisper interpreter for one Spanish-speaking participant attending a small group training session. Techworld’s interpreter sat next to the participant and quietly interpreted what the English-speaking presenter was saying. As the participant had questions for the presenter, the interpreter was able to interpret back and forth between the participant and the presenter; however, the majority of the time, the interpreter interpreted into Spanish.

Consecutive Interpretation

Consecutive interpretation is similar to whisper interpretation in that there will be a delay as the message is interpreted.

The biggest difference between whisper and consecutive interpretation is that the interpreter will be interpreting back and forth between languages the entire time. Consecutive interpretation is used to facilitate conversations between two or more people who are speaking different languages.

Our clients most commonly choose consecutive interpretation for small meetings, interviews or phone calls.

Simultaneous Interpretation

With Simultaneous interpretation, there is almost no delay in what the speaker is saying and what the listener is hearing. Simultaneous interpreters are elite professionals who are highly trained and articulate.

In order to provide a seamless delivery for the listener, simultaneous interpretation requires the use of audio interpretation equipment. The equipment allows the interpreter’s voice to be broadcast into the headphones of the listeners. Each team of interpreters from each language can be broadcast to a separate channel. With the use of equipment and a team of interpreters, multiple languages can easily be broadcast at the same time.

Simultaneous interpretation is best for large meetings, training sessions, and summits.  Techworld will need at least two weeks’ notice to coordinate with the interpreters and reserve the equipment.

Even though simultaneous interpreters are highly trained, this type of interpretation is mentally exhausting. For this reason, 2 interpreters per language work together as a team, allowing one to speak for 20 minutes while the other rests for 20 minutes.

Simultaneous interpretation can be a huge production usually happening within an even larger event. There are people, cables, booths, switches, microphones, headsets – all of which need to be coordinated and managed. To successfully pull off our crucial mission, Techworld assigns not only expert interpreters, but also a dedicated Project Manager and IT Support Tech who remain on-site throughout the event. We always make sure the interpreters are where they need to be when they need to be and that the equipment is running flawlessly.

We worry about the details so you don’t have to.

Contact us today for a free quote for your interpretation needs.