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Globalization has dramatically changed the way business operates. It opens up tons of new opportunities for businesses growth, but on the flip side, makes it hard for them to survive in global markets. The global business expansion increased the need for brand localization that led to the emergence of translation agencies. Every translation agency has its own way of managing its business, some fully rely on human translators, some go for machine translation for content generation, and others believe in striking the balance between human translators and translation technology.

To cope up with the demands of global markets, translation agencies are preferring using cloud-based CAT tool for translations. CAT is a great option for translation agencies that have to manage the volume of content for multiple clients. Global businesses that want to make their localization processes effortless and hassle-free should get the assistance of CAT translations. This article talks about the benefits of CAT tool for translation agencies and how they can assist the human translator to enhance their content quality.

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What is CAT Tool?

CAT Tool (computer-aided translation) has been around since the 1950s. In the past few decades, there have been significant developments and improvements in CAT technology. Unlike machine translation systems, they don’t generate direct translations, instead, CAT assists the human translation to manage translation quickly and maintain quality. This CAT tool support you in editing, managing, storing, and submitting the transitions.

Most CAT tools are cloud-based because they are easily accessible. Especially if you have employees working at remote locations, cloud CAT is the best option for you. There are many big global companies using CAT tools to automate the localization processes and make their global business expansion strategy successful.

How do CAT Tool work?

The purpose of CAT tool is to support human translators to perform their translation job quickly and proficiently. The CAT software does translation by dividing the content into different segments and then storing them in the database. Moreover, there are also many quality assurance tools integrated into the CAT tool for auto-correction, spelling check, grammar check, improving the sentence structure, and much more.

Following are some important steps involved in the CAT workflow:

  • A human translator opens the source text in the CAT program.
  • The CAT then extracts the content that you want to translate. This program only shows the text; other content types, such as images wouldn’t show in the interface.
  • You can see source text and translations displayed in the interface side by side.
  • The translator has to write the translations in the empty segments one after the other.
  • Once a translator finishes translation, it stores the pairs of translation and source text in the translation memory.
  • Whenever there is a need for an update or edit, the program returns to that specific pair in the translation memory to make updates.
  • This tool is smart enough to recognize the difference between identical segments and type the translations accordingly in the targeted column.

Significance of CAT Tools for Translation Agencies

CAT tools benefit translation companies in many different ways. Following are some significant perks offered by CAT technology.

  • Enhance Work Flexibility

When it comes to flexibility, cloud-based CAT tools are ideal for companies working on diversified translation projects simultaneously. This tool uses advanced AI technology to assist human translators in reviewing, editing, managing, and storing the translations. In translation agencies, different vendors are working on one project at a time. Unlike service-based tools, cloud-based CAT doesn’t create issues related to data redundancy, and all translation team members have access to just one version of all translation files. There is one centralized location to store all translation documents and accessible by team members.

The flexible nature of CAT makes it easier for the project manager to get both freelancers and in-house employees to work on the same translation project. Moreover, project managers can easily access freelancers and other translators through the CAT tool and invite them directly to work. The software contains all information about the translator, so the project manager doesn’t have to spend much time signing contracts and agreeing on the terms.

  • Quality Assurance Capabilities

The CAT has advanced quality assurance tools, such as grammar check, spell check, autocorrect, etc. Most mistakes are automatically eradicated from the translation document before the translator reviews them. This way, it also saves the time of translators removing minor mistakes. Moreover, this tool also detects any missing tags, numeric mismatches, and deviations from agreed terminologies. The quality assurance tool started working when the translation process began and continued to work during the editing, and proofreading process.

So, your translators have to do minimal work, and the CAT quality assurance tool ensures to maintain the highest content quality possible.

  • Higher Scalability

CAT tools that use cloud technology allow the stakeholders (freelancers, translators, editors, and clients) to work in one environment. All the features are available to every team member, making it easier for the project managers to manage documents. There would be no need for sending emails to vendors regarding every update made on the translation document. All users would have access to the updated version of translated files, and they can easily access them any time they want. It makes the project management hassle-free, and translation processes also take less time than manual file handling.

Moreover, in case, project managers want to update a segment or add a new team member, everyone would get the notification about it, and there would be no need to communicate the change. So, managing the staff will be much easier with CAT software, and the project manager can easily get track of the activities of all translators and vendors.

  • Easy Translation Management & Payments

Most CAT tools have connected with the freelance marketplace. This means the freelancer’s rates, specifications, experience, certifications, and complete portfolio of translation. Managers don’t have to hassle much to find the successful translators and close the deal with them. The project manager sent an invitation to a suitable translator, and the freelancer has to agree with all the terms during translation. So, the manager doesn’t have to negotiate with them or waste time signing the contracts.

This also allows the managers to effectively manage the full-time and contractual translators. Moreover, with CAT tools, it becomes very easy for managers to settle payment for all stakeholders. This tool allows them to release payments in just a few clicks. CAT also provides options to transfer money, handle bank payments and online wallets. Project managers can select any payment method they want.

  • Automated Processes

To fulfill the demands of global businesses, it is important to have a professional CAT in place that supports you in managing complicated file management processes and optimizing your overall workflow. Traditional project management includes so much manual file handling that not just leads to errors but also results in missed deadlines. The purpose of designing CAT tools is to support your translators communicate with each other in real-time and effortlessly manage the collaborative translation.

It also reduces the workload on the human translators that allow them to be more productive. These tools also help you to manage a massive number of translations in the fastest turnaround time.

  • Data Security

The security of information and data provided by a CAT provider is an important concern of translation agencies. They have to keep the client’s data secure to sustain a good reputation in the market. This is why most translation companies prefer to use CAT tools to ensure the higher security of their documents. In the cloud-based CAT software, all the data and files are stored in a centralized place, so it is important to make sure that those segments remain protected from hacking and cyber-attacks.

Security of confidential business documents and legal information is the major concern of every client, and you must choose a CAT tool that maintains information privacy. Make sure your CAT tools include advanced security measures to keep the information protected. Moreover, as the project manager has full control over all segments, they can restrict the access of certain segments to limited team members only. 

It is important to ensure that only the authorized team members can have access to confidential or legal business information. Your CAT provider is responsible for the data security. Data centers organize your cloud-based databases, and they are responsible for data encryption, making backup copies, and preventing data breaches.

  • Team Collaboration

How your translation team members communicate with each other has a huge influence on your overall translation project success. In the case of cloud-based CAT software all team members, be it translators, editors, proofreaders, etc., are working on the same project simultaneously, so it is important for them to communicate with each other effectively. CAT tools promote team cooperation and allow you to efficiently collaborate with your team members.

It also reduces the need to send excessive emails to all team members for every new update on the project, so you don’t have to bombard your colleague with files. As CAT enhances teamwork, there will be no delays, and all tasks will be managed on time.

Some Famous CAT Tools

1. SmartCAT

This is a popular CAT tool widely used by translation agencies, global enterprises, and individual translators. It is a cloud-based tool with an integrated vendor marketplace, collaboration features, and automated billing and international transaction option. It is a user-friendly tool but is still missing some important automation features. Although, SmartCAT is constantly improving the translation experience with every new update. This CAT tool is suitable for website assets and marketing content translations.

2. MarsHub 

MarsHub features a cloud-based CAT tool, MarsCAT, with remarkable translation management and collaboration capabilities. It is widely used by translation companies, global businesses, and the freelancing community. It has a user-friendly interface with quality assurance tools that make it easier for the translators to generate quality translations in the fastest turnaround time. This CAT tool is suitable for translating website assets, marketing content, legal documents, articles, and ads.

3. memoQ Translator Pro

Language service providers and translators use this CAT tool for editing, proofreading, reviewing the translated documents. You have to link it with the memoQ server to get full collaboration capabilities and translation support. It offers free maintenance and support for one year. It is a suitable option for the translation of business documents and marketing content. memoQ Translator Pro provides various quality assurance and text processing tools to users.

Wrapping Up!

Cloud-based CAT tools support translation agencies to manage high volumes of translations. These tools allow your translators and freelance workers to collaborate on different translation projects simultaneously. The smart quality assurance features and collaborative capabilities of CAT software make it easier for project managers to keep track of all activities happening on every single project and make timely improvements if required.

Not all CAT tools are the same; every software has its own specifications and capabilities. Based on your unique business needs and the nature of the translation project, you have to choose a CAT tool that provides all features necessary to handle your project. Moreover, it is also important to consider that you can upgrade your CAT tool to fulfill your growing business needs.

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