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The Need for Translated Documents in a Globalized World

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Last updated on July 27th, 2022 at 06:09 pm

In a globalized world…

…communication is instant and connection between countries is constant. This begets a growing need for document translation so that citizens, businesses, and governments across the world can communicate quickly and effectively. Language barriers create slowdowns and inefficiencies, and inaccurate translations create easily avoidable cultural misunderstandings. Across all industries, from medical and legal to finance, marketing and academia, document translation services are a cornerstone to success in today’s globalized and diverse world.

Throughout this blog, we’ll reference standard and certified document translation. A certified document translation is defined as a “complete, true and accurate, word-for-word translation of a source document, that was completed by a professional translation company and inclusive of a signed Certificate of Translation Accuracy.” A standard document translation is one that does not require a signed certificate and when translated the meaning of the document and cultural context are taken into account, rather than a strict word-for-word translation.

Globalization has driven the movement of people, businesses, and electronic content around the world. We are going to present several examples of where in the economy document translations services are used, so you may learn a little more about what we do and how we do it.

Document Translation for Academia

Knowledge knows no boundaries, but language barriers do. Whether you’re applying to school in the US or looking to go abroad, a university admissions office will likely require an evaluation of your credentials translated into their native language. Certified translations are required for these documents, so academia officials know they’re looking at the most accurate version of your credentials and personal history. Common documents include educational transcripts, passports, and birth certificates.

Document translation for academia goes further to cover more complex documents, including research papers and specialized content for universities, colleges, and school districts. Translation services for education cover websites and marketing content to cater to students abroad. Collaborative research across languages uses the aid of translation of documents and content.

Translation of documents for academia requires more than just language proficiency; it also requires an in-depth understanding of the subject matter and cultural nuances. JR Language offers academic document translations for disciplines including law, medicine, engineering, science, business, information technology, social studies, and the arts.

In addition to the translation of higher education documents, a translation agency can also provide the vitally important service of academic translations to families of limited English proficiency (LEP). At JR Language, we pride ourselves on helping international families stay informed on and prepared for their child’s education, with translations including everything from student performance to health and safety forms, gifted student programs, and parent-teacher conferences.

Document Translation for Government Entities

Government agencies and NGOs need translation services to communicate and serve their constituents. Cities, states, and government agencies need translation of documents on daily basis. For example, today I received a letter from the IRS and that included a document called Tax Help in other languages with support information for 13 languages, including Spanish, Arabic, Russian, Tagalog, and others, as the image below illustrates.

In a globalized world, even local governments are international entities who must be able to communicate with one another swiftly and accurately. Document translation provides the basis for effective communication between agencies, allowing for the travel of their citizens from one place to the next. Whether you’re planning an extended vacation, moving countries, or just filing taxes, submitting paperwork to government entities becomes increasingly challenging when translations are required. But it doesn’t have to be.

When submitting documents to government agencies, the expected deliverables must be crystal clear before submission. Understanding the required paperwork, translations, and certifications prior to submission is key to a stress-free experience.

Documents submitted to government agencies must be accompanied by a certified translation. These documents often contain sensitive, private information that comes with increased security expectations. As a provider of language services for the U.S. Government at all levels, JR Language is well equipped to translate sensitive documents while protecting your privacy to facilitate communication and access to information.

Document Translation for Immigration

One specific area of need in government document translations is within the field of immigration. As people look to cross borders and move countries, accurate paperwork is a must to facilitate an easy crossing and a stress-free arrival. We provide certified translations that meet the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) certified translation guidelines.

The USCIS requires a certified translation for all non-English documents in an application. Translating documents for immigration purposes is not the time to take a chance on a computer-generated translation or a friend that is not a professional translator. Trust the experts at a professional translation company to help you get your documents in order, translated, and certified.

Document Translation for Financial Institutions and Legal Fields

Any company working internationally has to provide a multitude of financial documents in multiple languages. These documents contain sensitive information including profit and loss statements, personal contact information, salaries, and more.  Language translation services are necessary to keep the flow of information steady and business running as usual.

While individual financial translations are less common, there are still a variety of situations in which it becomes necessary to submit translated financial documents, commonly to government entities. If you’re applying for a mortgage in another country, a wide number of documents must undergo a certified translation, including bank statements, employment verifications, pay stubs, and identifying information.

Accuracy is of the utmost importance when translating financial documents. Using a computer translation means risking inaccuracies or mistranslated numbers that are not properly localized in the right format and currency. Understanding the language is not enough when it comes to these documents; your translator must also understand the local culture as well as international accounting practices such as the Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP). Additionally, numbers may translate differently across cultures, changing the date format, currency conversion, and accounting standards. All of this is necessary to deliver an end document that is both accurate and easy to understand.

Documents being sent to a government entity or court system must have a certified translation. Translated legal materials can also include Human Resource materials such as employee handbooks, HR documents, and various business communications.

Accuracy and speed are essential for financial and legal translation services, with no room for error. All of our translation services are performed by experienced industry professionals, so you know documents are handled by experts, with the proper procedures and best practices.

Additionally, we understand that the sensitive nature of financial statements and legal documents comes with increased security expectations. JR Language will always sign a confidentiality agreement and take specific security measures to protect your precious and sensitive information.

Document Translation in the Healthcare Field

Hospital, dental, and doctor offices require translation services to establish and improve communication with their patients. From hospital websites, marketing material, and patient forms to training content and care instruction, translation services help the quality of care. In addition to translation services, healthcare organizations use interpretation services for doctor’s visits, support after surgery, or any in-person exchange to improve the communication and the interaction between people that speak different languages. From phone and Zoom interpretation to on-site interpretation services the diversity of services offers options, flexibility, and support 24/7 in multiple languages.

Headed abroad? Whether you’re going for a quick vacation or an extended business trip, having medical records prepared in another language isn’t something that’s on a typical packing list, but when you need it, you need it immediately. Immunizations are often required while crossing borders and having a translated medical document available can be the difference between a quick stop in customs or waiting around for hours. Having your current immunizations list, allergies, and even full medical history ready and translated can save you hours of stress when you need it.

Accuracy is paramount in medical document translations, so don’t leave it up to chance with a computer translation. At JR Language, we only use translators with proven experience in specific fields such as medicine, so we’re able to quickly provide 100% accurate documents, whether it’s a quick doctor’s note or a complex medical history transcript.

Document Translation for Business

Doing business in a globalized world means being able to speak to employees, partners, and clients in their native languages. Common documents for business translation include employee handbooks, instruction manuals, internal memos, and other forms of communication. Websites, marketing content, product descriptions, user manuals, and how-to-use product videos for clients should be translated into the languages of your customers..

Even for companies based solely in the USA, offering a Spanish document translation is a best practice, as over 43 million US residents speak Spanish at home. Spanish translation services are useful for any US-based company to effectively communicate with Spanish-speaking employees and clients if their audience includes Spanish speakers.

At our translation agency, we understand that business communications often contain sensitive or private material. Confidentiality is of the utmost importance, and we will always sign a confidentiality agreement.

Document Translation for Marketing

Doing business in a globalized world means marketing to international audiences across languages. Translating your marketing materials is a quick way to ensure your content resonates with all of your audiences. From blog and social posts to product descriptions and podcast show notes, adding translation options to your marketing material instantly expands their reach and effectiveness with new audiences across the world. You don’t have to double your workload to reach these audiences, you simply need to speak the language they’re already using.

Transcreation is an important service within marketing translations. Transcreation goes beyond localization. For example, catchphrases are almost always relevant to the language’s speakers. For instance, KFC’s “finger-licking good” campaign translated into “eat your fingers off” in Mandarin. When Puffs tried to market in Germany, they didn’t realize “puff” was a slang term for a brothel. Without transcreation, these kinds of embarrassing errors can occur. Transcreation allows your translators to communicate your message, rather than your exact copy, to your audience and produce cultural adaptations in the process.

Marketing is about conveying and evoking emotions, so how you say it is just as important as what you say. Our experienced and professional translators consider cultural context, regional slang, and audience expectations in your marketing translations so you can avoid costly and embarrassing missteps. Localizing your marketing is the best way to get your message across without falling prey to a variety of linguistic or cultural differences.

Even in the USA, Spanish translations of marketing materials increase their reach and effectiveness. With one of the largest Spanish-speaking populations in the world, Spanish translation services for US-based businesses are rapidly changing to a market necessity.

Today’s world gets smaller and smaller with language no longer being the barrier it once was with the help of translation agencies. Here at JR Language, we can help you with anything from a birth certificate to marketing campaigns for your new product, to complex legal matters, to medical situations, to any of life’s events that require translation. This can avoid delays and frustration. Contact us here at JR Language to see how we can help you.

Jackie Ruffolo
Jackie Ruffolo
Jackie was born in Venezuela and has a BS in computer engineering. As President of JR Language, she spends time researching new technology and productivity tools for the Company. She holds a certificate of Localization and Project Management- Localization. Through her many years of experience working in multilingual corporate environments, she understands firsthand the value of bridging language barriers in creating smooth communication that allows for productive and happy work environments. She is fluent in Spanish and English, and is a frequent contributor to both our English and Spanish blogs. 20 Years of experience in marketing Jackie loves nature and to be outdoors.