In 2015, the annual revenue of the German automotive and supplier industry was nearly half a trillion euros. Numerous international markets and diversified production chains have incorporated companies in this industry into a global system of production and sales locations. This has led to a massive number of documents – both technical and marketing-related – that frequently require translation.
In the following, our aim is to familiarise you with the challenges that arise when translating texts in the automotive field. We will describe the solutions tolingo offers for your translation projects; these help us take advantage of system integration options, improve processes, define and ensure quality standards and cut costs.
Besides the major automobile manufacturers, there is a plethora of companies that only produce individual products for the entire production chain. These may be plant manufacturers or tool producers, in addition to the producers of individual parts who are responsible for up to 70% of all components in a newly built vehicle.
ÜNot every translator is capable of translating for the automotive industry. Specialist translators acquire an understanding of the technical details and processes through corresponding professional training and years of experience with texts from the automotive sector. Choosing a specialist translator who has undergone training specifically in this field is therefore absolutely crucial for assuring the quality of these translations.
Translating complex production processes or highly detailed machine components requires a sound overall understanding of the technical context. However, individual terms for product lists or catalogues must frequently be translated with little or even no context at all. When this is the case, it is all the more essential for the translator to understand the purposes of the individual elements and parts in order to eliminate the possibility of mixing them up.
Most often, texts for the automotive and supplier industry that need to be prepared and translated accordingly for international partners come from three areas.
Companies need contractual documents for both the production and sales of their products; these safeguard their business activities. Internal documents – which often need to be available in several languages – are also required for coordinating production processes and supply chains.
These texts contain specifications to help accurately execute working instructions for installations and production processes – they require adherence to industry-specific terminology that describes technical elements with precision and leaves no room for interpretation. This is crucial to ensuring that production processes run flawlessly, not to mention assumption of liability. Technical texts such as these are often maintained in content management systems that are deployed along the entire value chain. It is important that the exported file formats are delivered in the same format following translation, or else are capable of being incorporated directly by the service provider through system integration.
Marketing materials and website texts are also required for selling the company’s own products. These texts must be updated on a regular basis to reflect changes to the product portfolio and the latest advertising campaigns. For these texts, a tone and style which suit the company’s marketing activities and inspire customers’ enthusiasm for the products in their respective language take precedence over specialised terminology and security against liability. These texts could be:
Thanks to many years’ experience with automotive-related texts and close cooperation with specialists in this field, tolingo is able to offer specialised expertise in a variety of different language combinations.
Because of the high demands for translations of technical documents and other texts from the area of automotive engineering, all technical texts at tolingo are processed exclusively by specialised translators, who have either received training in a technical field or have gathered many years of professional experience in translating texts of this nature. Not only are these translators consummately familiar with specialist terminology, they also understand the correlations between technical processes and mechanical manufacturing. When marketing materials require translation, customers also benefit from the involvement of marketing experts at tolingo.
To make sure that mistakes are avoided, our translation process also involves a second native-speaker specialist translator, who checks the translated texts for grammar and syntax, correct reproduction of the original text’s content, spelling, punctuation and completeness. This process at tolingo is certified in accordance with the international standard ISO 17100 for specialised translations and includes the following:
tolingo also offers special services which improve the cooperation between the client and tolingo as well as the quality of the translation even further. These include creating glossaries and style guides, linking existing content management systems and extensive experience in file engineering. And of course, data protection also takes top priority at tolingo.
In order to define special terminology from the automotive industry with precision and ensure its proper use in all translations, we recommend creating a glossary and keeping it up to date. The most important terms are saved in a multilingual glossary and – if necessary – supplemented with specific descriptions of technical details and illustrative images if needed. The translator has direct access to the system used by tolingo while they work. As soon as the system recognises a glossary entry in the source language, it suggests the predefined corresponding translation in the target language. After the translation is complete, tolingo’s project managers can also electronically check that all predefined terms have been used consistently – thus guaranteeing that the translations are as accurate as possible and of the highest quality.
For companies with their own content management systems – such as Docufy or Schema – being able to select the elements to be translated and send these “packages” to translation service providers is a huge advantage. To make this possible, tolingo offers direct connectivity to the translation software Across and can connect to customer-specific interfaces for document transfer. You can thus continue to benefit from all the advantages of your own content editing systems while working with tolingo. By utilising the latest version of Across, all you need to do is extend the workflow of your overall translation process to include tolingo. This guarantees efficient, speedy processes.
Another challenge presented by the automotive engineering industry? Special file formats for editing the graphics within technical documents. By using cutting-edge software to prepare and process texts – and thanks to many years of experience in file engineering – tolingo’s project managers are well versed in dealing with all common formats, and deliver these to the customer in the original format after the translation is complete. This prevents additional costs for adjustments or format conversions.
tolingo offers automotive manufacturers and suppliers the option of checking translations directly on the end device. Here’s an example: A company with a new passenger vehicle would like to have the software of the new model’s entertainment system translated. In addition to providing a high-quality tolingo translation, it’s also possible for the translator to verify the usability and functionality of the translated software – directly on the device / using the physical product. This ensures that a translation which is already accurate in terms of content and language will also be displayed accurately on the end device, and that a native speaker would be able to operate and understand the device without any difficulties.
There are all sorts of other situations besides this example in which a functional check of the end device is worth considering. Simply get in touch with us and we’ll work together to come up with the best way to go about it.
We make it our priority to treat your data and documents with strict confidentiality. All tolingo translators have signed contracts to maintain complete confidentiality and all data transfers take place exclusively via our own infrastructure. Within the system and in our online shop, your data is transferred by means of SSL encryption and is therefore perfectly protected. We would be happy to also issue you with a separate non-disclosure agreement or sign one that is already in use within your company.
tolingo is a competent and reliable partner for all kinds of technical translations. We provide you with a comprehensive service and overall consultation on process design and technical solutions as well as on quality assurance and cost savings through word repetitions and automated procedures. We analyse the systems and processes used by you and create a customised solution for all translation services in your company. This means you can rest assured that your systems, machines and other technical products will be used properly all over the world. We look forward to hearing from you – and to working with you!