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LBC's Translation Service
Frequently Asked Questions

Q. How do you charge for translation?

A. We charge a rate per thousand words, usually on the target (translated version) word count. This rate varies according to the degree of difficulty of a given language and subject, and the turn-around time required. Documents of less than 1000 words may be charged at a pro rata rate, and single pages or certificates are usually subject to a minimum charge.

Q. How do I get a document word count?

A. . If you have it in an electronic format such as Microsoft Word, then your software can do the word count for you. Simply click on File > Properties > Statistics and you will get a computer-generated word count. This will give you an idea of the cost of the completed translation. This is not so straightforward with other formats such as pdf files or hard copies, and in some cases it will be necessary to do a manual count. You can, of course, let us do it for you. You can email or fax us any document and we will be happy to provide a free estimate. In any case, we would usually need to see some representative pages to enable us to give you a more accurate estimate. Bear in mind that in most cases our charges are based on the target language word count, which can be as much as 15% higher than the word count of the original document. (The target language is the one into which the document is being translated.) Some exceptions to this occur when translating into character-based languages, such as Japanese or Chinese. In this case, we take the source language word count plus a 15% loading.

Q. What languages do you translate?

A. We translate into and from a wide range of languages, but these are the ones that are most frequently requested: English, Arabic, Bulgarian, Catalan, Chinese (Simplified - Mandarin), Chinese (Traditional - Cantonese), Czech, Croatian, Danish, Dutch, Estonian, Finnish, Flemish, French, German, Greek, Hungarian, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Latvian, Norwegian, Persian, Polish, Portuguese (European and Brazilian), Romanian, Russian, Slovak, Spanish (European and South American) Swedish, Turkish, Ukrainian, Vietnamese and Welsh.

Q. Does it cost the same to have something translated into a foreign language from English as it does into English?

A. No. Rates are higher for translations from English into foreign languages. This is a simple supply and demand issue. It is of the utmost importance that a document is translated by a native speaker of the language into which it is being translated, and quite simply, translators who are native speakers of English are more readily available in this country than are those who are native speakers of foreign languages.

Q. How long does a translation take?

A. Translators usually work at a rate of around 2000 words per business day. which is the equivalent of about 3-5 pages for an average document. We can however offer an express service which attracts an additional cost, as even if a document is only one page, completing the translation of it in one day would mean disrupting the work schedules of both the translator and LBC for that day. Additionally, we want to ensure that every translation goes through the requisite editing and production process.

Q. Who carries out the translation?

A. Only professional, qualified translators with a proven track record and membership of a recognised professional organisation. Our in-house capacity is complemented by a network of over 250 translators and interpreters, each with their own specialism, translating exclusively into their mother tongue, thus ensuring that we can cover all the subject areas listed, from accountancy to water treatment plants. Consequently we have the resources to assign the most appropriate specialists to your text, closely monitoring each project from start to finish, so that clients know they can expect the same high quality results time after time.

Q. How do you ensure the accuracy of your translations?

A. Before starting an assignment, we ask you to provide one contact who is either completely familiar with the source text or with the subject matter so that once we have worked through the entire document, we can, if necessary, liaise on text clarification, layout, colours, the scanning in of captions, etc. If the source text is vague and open to interpretation, it will not become clearer in translation unless it was clarified beforehand.

Following initial translation by the appropriate translator, translations for information are proof read by a second professional to ensure correct spelling, grammar, transfer of figures and tables and that all text is in fact there.

Translations for publication are "mirror" checked by a second translator, who checks not only the accuracy of the translation, but whether it retains the nuances, subtleties and impact of the source text. Where texts are destined for different cultures, we would advise you to give your associates in the target country sight of your proposed text for their approval. Alternatively, we can do this for you.

Q. How do you ensure the confidentiality of documents?

A. All documents are treated with the highest degree of confidentiality Both in-house staff and associates recognise the importance of client confidentiality, and all translators are bound by a confidentiality agreement.

Q. Can you certify translations?

A. Yes, we do this on a regular basis, especially for translations of legal or patent documents and certificates. As winners of the DTI National Award, LBC has a UK-wide reputation for the excellence of its language services.

Q. By what methods can you receive and deliver documents?

A. We would always prefer to receive your source texts in electronic format by email, especially where layout as per the original document is important. In this way we can usually overtype the original and ensure a page-by-page translation, retaining layout and typefaces. We can, of course, receive hard copy documents by fax, mail, courier, or overnight service, or source texts on a variety of media including CDs, DVDs or floppy disks. We can deliver translations by any of these same methods, in accordance with your preferences.

For any further information or a no-obligation quote, please contact us

The Languages for Business Centre
e-mail info@languages-for-business.com  Tel ++44 (0) 845 459 8964 Mobile ++44 (0)7878 899 967