Marta picks up the phone and immediately informs me: “I haven’t spoken English in ages! I’ve been speaking in German everyday recently, so I’m not used to this.” “So, you’re Spanish but a long-term Germany resident?” I ask, though I’m quickly corrected: “Actually I’m from the Basque country, so I grew up bilingual. Basque was also my very first contact with the translation industry, since Basque translators are not that easy to find”.
“…MT is the easy part! We need to join different tools; that’s the real challenge.”
Translation technology: survival of the fittest
Marta, who we can confirm is at least trilingual, is our Head of Translation Technology Operations at EVS Translations. Celebrating 10 years at the company next month, she has witnessed first-hand the rapidly evolving technology landscape of our industry. This technology covers translation management, multimedia localisation, MT and Desktop Publishing Software. She is key to coordinating our team of translation engineers who process content using the tools which will ensure clients achieve their end goals. “Gone are the days of delivering pure translated text; if you can’t deliver a finished and fully-localised product – website, video, app etc. – or provide solutions that can be scaled to meet high-volume global demand, you are out.”
Understanding technology, across the company
“A lot of progress has happened particularly in MT in recent years, hasn’t it?” I ask, to which she replies “Yes, but MT is the easy part! We need to join different tools; that’s the real challenge. We’re also building the connection between the translation technology department and the project management team and the sales teams, so they are clear how the tech works. They need to understand the technical processes, which will bring the best results. This is really important for our clients. I started here as a translation engineer and then moved to project management, so I know how translation technology can help project managers. I know what they need to know.”
“…we talk a little about the pitfalls of having many technical experts in a team but with no one to coordinate them”
Managers vs technical experts
Marta is very modest and insists that all she does is coordinate the team and oversee the technical projects which they are assigned to. At the moment, it’s a complex customised MT solution. “This is a big project and I’m really grateful to have such a great team. They really know how to build the solution. I’m really organised and very communicative; that’s probably my strength” she reflects, then adds thoughtfully and even a little wistfully “The people in our technology team are really experts in their specific technical area…” “But that’s important, too, isn’t it?” I say, almost to reassure her. And we talk a little about the pitfalls of having many technical experts in a team but with no one to coordinate them or coordinate knowledge sharing and then inter-departmental communication. “Yes, it’s good” she replies brightly. “Technically, my team is so strong right now. They take care of the tech and I take care of all the rest! When clients come with questions, we can provide training and calls. We can move things forward and make it happen. We have that confidence.”
Working life in Germany
“So, how’s life working for a company in Germany?” I ask as we wrap up the conversation. She stutters across the phone line “er…hmm…I’m trying to think of something appropriate to say for this blog article.” (“Don’t worry” I reassure her. “Just say it and we’ll edit the content later!”) “Well…some people say that Germans are a bit cold, but that’s not true. I have great friendships here. Of course, in Spain we live out in the streets, enjoying ourselves, the Spanish climate and so on. You can’t do that so much here because of the weather. But there are so many nice traditions in Germany. And I’ve been given so many opportunities with this job. In Spain, when you become a mum, the legal framework is less protective and not many employers are as supportive as EVS Translations. After 10 years, this company is always in my heart, somehow.”
Then, as if almost catching herself lapsing into nostalgia, she comments quickly “I’m really not sure if there’s anything of interest in here for your blog! Maybe I haven’t said enough about the technical side…” As she attempts to launch back into the tech talk, I say “No, that’s great. It’s been really nice talking with you.” And I’m honestly glad I spent some time chatting with Marta.
For advice and consultation on your business’ upcoming translation project, contact our team today.
They will ensure translation workflows and technology solutions are designed to meet you team’s specific objectives and timeframes, ready for a successful launch.
EVS Translations UK Ltd.
+44 (0)115 964 4288
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EVS Translations GmbH
+49 69/82 97 99-99