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How important is Brand consistency for your business? Creating a Brand is the easy part but maintaining your brand image to resonate your vision, mission and values and connect with the diversity of customers in different countries in different languages is the challenging part.
There are many aspects of Brand consistency and if your business is planning to expand across countries, translation becomes necessary and one of the most crucial criteria to consider is consistency in terminology.
Using the right terminology, particularly in technical descriptions, manuals and instructions will enhance communication and the consistency of terminology will reduce any confusion and efficiency for readers. For example, when you’re using two different technical terminology, which have the same meaning, such as “spanner” and “wrench”, readers will get confused and start to wonder whether a spanner and a wrench are two different tools.
From a business operation perspective, this could lead to unwanted and unnecessary expenses. Taking another look at the “wrench” and “spanner” variants, if both terms are used in the documentation for the tool supplied with a machine, several completely identical tools might be added to the delivery. The material master data will then contain multiple parts and materials that are the same and this can be the potential cause for error and administrative expenses.
What may seem like a trivial error is taken, by businesses, as a risk to the success and failure of their projects and products. Words provide guidance for customers. It starts with the initial contact on the website, to product recognition in stores, to reports, order and handling, commissioning and ordering of replacement parts, as well as instructions or installation manuals.
If you’re in the manufacturing or construction industry, component suppliers will be faced by clients’ demand to establish consistency in terminology, particularly from major brand clients. Demands in terminology consistency cold be from the constructions phase to the multilingual documentation. Some major clients may even implement penalties for non-uniformity. Therefore, for contractors, such an error is crucial and has clear associated risks.
If you’re in the information technology industry dealing with content management systems. Consistency in terminology cannot be ambiguous. Technologies for modularization and management of multi-functional text units required to ensure efficiency in content creation is almost considered a mandatory checklist. The consequences of inconsistent terminology is more crucial in this case, particularly, if your business deal with different vendors that will take over the building blocks. Different vendors will have different styles and terminology and if there right terminology is not communicated across, effect can lead to unnecessary delays, higher costs and sometimes incomplete projects.
The same applies to translation memory systems: they are fed with segments from different translation projects. If they become polluted by inconsistent translations generated over time due to unclear terminology in the source texts, then errors will spread through new documents like wildfire.
Establishing Consistency Effectively
This may possibly be the biggest headache for documentation departments, especially if you’re a bigger organization. The ability and process to establish consistency in terminology can be very tedious.
Consistency is first achieved through the establishment of clear, valid company terminology and its functional integration into all company processes. Company terminology is an integral part of the company language, and the creation of a corporate identity is a task faced by the entire company. If this weren’t the case, it would be called “documentation terminology” or “translator terminology” or even “engineer terminology”. Consistent terminology, from construction through to documentation and marketing, can only be achieved if every individual employee at a company participates and takes on their responsibility.
To make things easier, there are ways to achieve consistency effectively. Nobody has to reinvent the wheel. However, experts and professionals are required. Engaging a language solutions service provider can be of great help in “harvesting” specialized industry-specific terminology, not only in the source language but in multilingual translated texts. Professional terminology management systems promote consistent terminology and simplify the modelling and visualization of taxonomies and dependencies between terms.
Transn International Singapore is a language solutions service provider that has pools of translators in specific industries, specialized in knowing the right terminology to be used for brands. Transn provides services to major industries such as medical translation services, construction translation services, media translation services, financial translation services, logistics translation services, and maritime translation services. Having a pool of expert translators within each specific industry, it brings us to the forefront of being able to translate your messages accurately and in accordance to proper legal requirements.