Frequently Asked Questions
What services do you provide?
Our core service is translation. We also offer editing, proofreading, post-editing, transcription and (if possible) interpreting. Click here for our services.
What languages do you work with?
We provide ten language combinations, with English as either the source or target language. The ten languages were identified by the British Council as the key languages to aid UK businesses in the post-Brexit environment.
Do you work with any other languages or translate between these languages?
Our commitment to quality means we focus solely on English and these language combinations, as that is what we do best. We are happy to take enquiries about other languages and see if we can help; otherwise we recommend you search for freelancers via the ITI or CIOL online directories.
How can I be sure I will receive a high-quality translation?
We are accredited members of the ATC (Association of Translation Companies). ATC accreditation is recognised as the mark of quality-managed language services. The ATC defines standards of excellence for language service companies by promoting quality-driven services and best practice.
Additionally, our director and a number of our translators are proudly qualified to meet ISO 17100:2015, the European standard setting out the requirements for the provision of quality services by translation service providers, and this is the standard we adhere to internally.
We ensure all our translators and linguists have a minimum qualification level of a BA or equivalent in their language, plus 3 years’ experience translating, or at least 5 years’ professional experience in your industry, and are members of recognised professional bodies, such as the Institute of Translation & Interpreting, and the Chartered Institute of Linguists, who likewise enforce strict quality and training standards.
How much information do you need about my project to quote?
The more information you can provide us with, the better.
The basics we always need are: the type of document(s), source and target language, length of the document(s), your deadline, the level of service you need (eg: whether you need a “good enough” job for informal use, or a publishable piece of work). If you can send either a sample of the piece or the whole document, this obviously answers most of these points.
Extra information that always helps: the purpose of the project (eg: to apply for a visa, win a tender, improve your company’s online presence, etc), the audience for the project (eg: potential customers, employees, general public, government department, etc.), and any preferred terminology (eg: “customer” not “client”)
What do you mean by source language and target language?
The source language is the one used in the original document(s); the target language is the one you want your final document(s) to be translated into. Eg: if your document is in Spanish and you need it translated into English, the source is Spanish and the target is English.
How long will my translation take?
This depends on the type of document, the type of language, our availability and whether we need to perform any formatting or other processes on it. As a rough guide, for standard translations we translate approx. 2000 words per working day.
For certified translations, we offer a standard service of 5 working days and an urgent service of 24-48 hours.
What format should I provide the documents I want translating in?
Ideally an editable copy of your file (e.g. the Word file that matches a PDF). If the file has been generated from an InDesign file or HTML doc, please also send us that original file. We can work from PDFs, and even photos, but it is very time consuming, and will therefore affect your final cost.
I only have a draft version of my document at the moment. Can you still provide a quote?
We can give you an estimated cost and time frame but we can’t provide a formal quote until the final version of your document is ready. If you do decide to send through a draft, this gives us time to check our availability and discuss your translation requirements with you in advance.
What’s the difference between editing, post-editing, and proofreading?
Editing is where we check the style, tone, flow, and general quality of the piece of writing. Post-editing is the process where we check and amend a machine-generated translation to achieve an acceptable standard; and proofreading is the final check on a piece of work to ensure there are no grammar or translation errors.
Who will work on my project?
One of our directors will discuss your requirements with you and provide a quote. Once you decide to start working with us, we will assign a linguist who is an expert in your sector. Our director will be your main point of contact but we will be transparent about which linguist is doing the work, and you will have contact with them if necessary. Click here to learn more about us.
Who are your linguists?
Our translators and linguists are carefully selected freelancers working in the UK and internationally. When one is assigned to your project we will usually let you know who they are, and/or their relevant professional information. We differentiate ourselves from other agencies with this transparency and we believe it encourages our best work. Also unlike most other agencies, our director Emma Plested is a qualified linguist, which means we have full understanding of the quality of the work we deliver.
I’ve made some updates to a previously translated document and I only want you to translate the updates. Do I need to pay to have the whole text translated again?
It depends on how many updates there are, the quality of the original translation if we didn’t do it ourselves, and the size and nature of the project. We always aim to provide you with the highest quality possible and this may mean checking the current translation first for accuracy and then translating the new parts, or redoing the whole project if necessary.
Are the translations revised by a second translator?
As part of our quality process, our translations are usually proofread by a second translator who is an expert in the relevant sector. Depending on your project, we will discuss this with you.
Can you make sure to use our preferred terminology?
We use translation software to translate most of our projects, which stores databases of terminology and phrasing for us as we work, specific to your project or company. These are called Translation Memories (TM), and we are able to use these TMs to keep our translations consistent, and ensure we use your preferred terms and phrases. This ranges from simple words like “client” versus “customer”, or “store” versus “shop”, to large, repetitive chunks of text that you might use in documents like Terms and Conditions, or Legal Notices.
I need to see if some specific content is in a document before I decide whether to pay for a full translation. Can you check it for me?
Yes we can do this. It’s possible that what you are looking for is not in the document, but we can read it on an hourly basis, make notes and either summarise the text or just skim it to try and find what you are looking for. We can then translate either just these sections or the whole document, depending on what you need.
What is your pricing policy?
Depending on your project, we usually charge a set project fee, per page fee or a per hour fee. Occasionally we will charge per word of the source text. Urgent jobs are priced higher than standard jobs and, likewise, highly technical texts cost more than basic texts. In all cases, this is based on what we believe a qualified and competent professional translator should charge for their time.
Do you have a minimum fee?
Yes, we need to charge a minimum fee to cover our administrative costs. However, one of our strong points is that we are a small, flexible agency, and so we will always try to find a suitable solution for you.
How do I pay?
Our standard payment terms are 30 days from date of invoice, to be paid via PayPal, credit/debit card, BACS transfer, international SWIFT transfer, or cheque.
If you are a first-time client, we will ask for part or full payment in advance, or shorter terms, via the above methods, before starting any work.
What currency should I pay in?
We accept payment in GBP (£) and EUR (€) and we charge based on the exchange rate at the time of quotation.
There is lots of repeated text, is there a discount for this?
We do offer discounts on a case-by-case basis if there is a lot of repeated text.