Support Small Business All Year Long: Work With a Smaller Translation Agency

Language Service Provider (LSP)

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You have likely heard about the movement to “shop small” and Small Business Saturday, which happens each year on the Saturday after Thanksgiving. Around the holidays, especially, communities encourage shoppers to patronize local and small businesses, rather than larger retailers and ecommerce stores—and for good reason. Study after study shows that small businesses give back to their local communities

However, not all small businesses rely on seasonal sales or have a brick and mortar store. Many provide valuable business services. In fact, small businesses employ nearly half of U.S. workers. It’s no wonder, government contracts have small business set-aside requirements. We all need to work together to keep this engine of economic growth on track. 

Beyond supporting communities, small business owners, and the U.S. economy using smaller firms to provide business services, including translation services, is a savvy business move. Let’s consider the benefits of working with a small translation agency like DTS Language Services, Inc.

1. Quality Assurance

The assumption is that working with a large translation agency guarantees better quality. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Because large translation agencies need a more extensive staff to operate (e.g., project managers, sales representatives, marketing and P.R. staff, etc.), they also need to invest in maintaining that staff. The costs of keeping the lights on at some larger agencies might surprise you. 

As a result, a larger portion of clients’ fees at mega-agencies goes toward paying the agency’s staff than to the actual translator. Smaller agencies, on the other end of the spectrum, can deliver consistent quality and because the overhead is lower, charge less without sacrifcing quality.

At DTS, our approach ensures a high-quality translation and quick turnaround. Our project managers monitor the quality of our translations by maintaining a close relationship with our translators who live all around the world. Our screening process is also set up to deliver the highest standards in the industry. We use native language speakers and subject matter experts whenever possible.

2. Streamlined Processes

In addition, the quality of the translation is not determined by the size of the agency, but by the processes employed by the translators and all staff members. Because smaller agencies lack the layers of bureaucracy of large language service suppliers, you’re likely dealing directly with only one or two staff members on a translation project. This provides a lot of continuity and gives you the opportunity to be as involved in the process as makes sense for you.

Not only will you have a more intimate experience working with a smaller agency, you will likely work with translators who are more committed to their craft. The translator’s expertise, qualifications, and experience are all factors that affect the quality. Best practices, no matter what type of written content, suggest that all translations incorporate a sense of culture, location, sensitivity, and nuance. For this reason, we take these points into account when matching your project with the right translation team.

3. Flexibility

While large shops are often locked into the “one-size fits all” packages they offer, smaller agencies often can offer more flexible terms. For example, some big agencies won’t even consider working with clients with budgets below a certain threshold. Small agencies, however, provide the same service and care for your one-page document as they will devote to your 1,000-word e-guide or 100,000-word medical device manual. 

Also, even if a large firm agrees to take on what amounts to a small-to-them translation project, they will likely farm it out to junior staff or sub-contractors whom they have not fully vetted. None of these individuals will be as vested in your satisfaction as the owner and staff of a small language services team.

4. Customer Service and Personalized Attention

Perhaps the biggest advantage to working with a small translation agency is the level of customer service you will receive. In this era of automation and outsourced customer service, it is so refreshing to be able to call a service provider and speak directly to the person who worked on your project. The rapport and problem-solving available through small businesses is really unparalleled. 

Communication, transparency, and interaction with clients is vital to the service we provide at DTS. Each dedicated project manager has the knowledge and expertise to select the right translator or interpreter for each assignment. Because we have access to a wide variety of language professionals, we have the freedom to choose translators who are interested in the particular topic and enjoy the work they are doing. This can really make all the difference!

  1. Meet Your Federal Agency Contracting Goals

In addition to the above benefits, working with a small translation agency can help your organization satisfy its small business set-aside requirements. If you receive federal funding (e.g., from the NIH, which falls under the Federal Department of Health and Human Services) to conduct a clinical trial, for instance, you must distribute a portion of spending to small businesses, like DTS.

Keep in mind that if you do contract with the government, you may be audited and required to show documentation proving you have partnered with small business specialists. If you do not meet this requirment, you will need to fill out a lot of paperwork justifying what you did or did not do in order to find a small business partner. So, hiring a small translation agency is not only a smart business move, it will help you avoid fees and penalties imposed by the government.

 If you are looking for document translation or localization, phone interpretation, or website translation services, contact us for a quote. We would be honored to partner with you for any of your language needs!