Starting a translation agency is certainly not an easy task. If you are passionate, smart, and work hard on building your translation agency, these seven steps will help you make it successful.
1) Get Educated. It doesn’t matter whether you are planning to work on projects for clients or source translation jobs on projects, getting educated about translation will certainly help in achieving success faster. Many translation agencies have jumped into the translation industry without any knowledge of the key elements that determine the success or failure of a translation company. Knowledge is power! Take time out to understand what makes translation tick by brushing up your skills through courses available both online and offline based on your target language pair/groups.
2) Set goals. In addition to your translation education, set realistic translation agency goals. Make a list of tasks that you need to accomplish on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis. Once you have been educated about translation agencies and the industry it operates in, map out a strategy for setting up your own translation firm based on what you have learned and make it happen!
3) Choose Your Office Space. You can’t start working in your living room or bedroom and hope to become successful without investing some money into translation workstations, office equipment, and other important translation tools. Check local homes for rent listings online (craigslist is one such site) if you want to headquarters from home or check nearby offices available for lease that can serve as a source for translation agencies to save money on translation equipment.
4) Hire your Team. The key to building long-term success in translation workflows and processes requires assembling the right team of talented translators, editors, and project managers (when required). One way to build such a team is by hiring interns through online translation internships or translation internship programs. Such an approach helps small firms with limited budgets build their teams without relying solely on experienced employees.
5) Acquire Translation Tools. Successful translation agencies use offline and online tools and resources like translating apps, language technology tools like Google Analytics, and real-time translator software that help them execute translation projects faster and more efficiently. Translation resources like translation software, translation workflow management tools, proofreading software, translation memory databases are so important that you can’t afford to ignore them if you are planning to start translation agency workflows successfully.
6) Apply for Certification. Translation certification can help translation agencies set themselves apart from other translation service providers in the industry. It helps translation companies prove their translation technical expertise to clients who seek fast turnaround times and accurate translations at competitive prices. A number of online/offline training programs available even today offer free certification exams that give ambitious translators an opportunity to practice translating real-world documents using the latest translation technology platforms like Google Translate (just like native speakers).
7) Plan Your Pricing Strategy. Pricing translation agencies and translation services are pretty simple. Translation companies charge translation rates based on translation word counts using translation units, translation linguistic expertise required for translation projects, special translation requirements like rush translation workflows, and so on. You can calculate translation agency fees and charges by multiplying your translation rate per word with the total word count of a project to arrive at estimated final charges.
Once you have set up your company, it’s time for marketing followed by setting up an online presence. Before you know it, you will be ready to take on clients from across the globe! Good luck!