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GALAxy Newsletter

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At Arm's Length or Close to the Vest? The Optimal Relationship between Clients and Vendors

The relationships between vendors and clients go through their ebbs and flows (more insourcing, followed by more outsourcing, followed by…). As predictable as the swings of a pendulum, all of us – clients and vendors – go through our normal gyrations back and forth. And it is all in an attempt to find that elusive, but allegedly perfect, middle ground – but where is it? And beyond the question of where to place work (inside or outside), the question is more about the right tenor of vendor-client relationships--at arm's length or close to the vest? The answer, I will argue, is both, in the right proportion.

Singh-Molares, Anil. GALAxy Newsletter (2006). Careers>Freelance>Collaboration


Banding Together for Better Business

To the uninitiated, joining an association with dozens, even hundreds, of your competitors, could seem daft, to say the least. As for openly sharing information with them, well, you’d have to be nuts, wouldn’t you?

Thicke, Lori. GALAxy Newsletter (2005). Articles>Collaboration>Professionalism>Localization


Budget Marketing Can Work

For small and mid-sized translation and localization service vendors, a proactive and flexible marketing strategy backed by reasonable investments can powerfully expand business.

Zhao, Ryan. GALAxy Newsletter (2005). Articles>Business Communication>Marketing>Localization


Buying Maturity in Localization

The first time I heard about maturity models was when Lionbridge acquired an organization in India that was operating under CMM Level 5 certification. CMM, I learned, stands for Capability Maturity Model and is a framework that describes how organizations define and refine their key process areas. The framework, developed by Carnegie Mellon University’s Software Engineering Institute, defines five different levels of process maturity, of which Level 5 (“optimizing") is the highest achievable level.

Esselink, Bert. GALAxy Newsletter (2006). Articles>Language>Localization


Do the Math! The Changing Calculus of Translation

How do you calculate likely future needs for translation/localization?

Sargent, Benjamin B. GALAxy Newsletter (2007). Articles>Language>Localization>Translation


Does Size Really Matter? A Look at Cross Border Partnerships in Europe

Yes, size does matter. At least when you look back at the consolidation process in localization. Those who remained small or mid sized enterprises saw a rapidly changing market that divided localization into small SLVs and large MLVs. But from today’s perspective, this black and white view has turned into a much more colorful landscape of localization companies that act individually or jointly and regularly provide a more or less global service offering, whatever the actual size of the company.

Loehn, Dirk. GALAxy Newsletter (2004). Careers>Freelance>Localization


Frontiers of Localization Education: The Localization Program at California State

To effectively prepare students to participate in this industry we need to provide them with a skill set that is a blend of technological expertise, industry-specific knowledge, e-business skills, inter-cultural communication effectiveness, linguistic savvy, cultural understanding and international business orientation.

Singh, Nitish. GALAxy Newsletter (2006). Articles>Education>Localization>Case Studies


Getting China Straight

Today in 2005, how many people in the world can go a day without using a product “Made in China”? Although the answer is not yet “none”, it soon will be. Whether people know it or not, the Chinese tide is already lapping at our feet. Yet most people remain ignorant of what it stands for.

Shin, Don. GALAxy Newsletter (2005). Articles>Collaboration>International>China


How Can We Better Educate Our Clients?

"I'm going away on vacation now. Will you please get this thing localized while I'm gone?" Do you recognize this scenario? Two minutes before your own vacation starts, one of your key clients kicks off the localization of a software suite into 14 languages for what he claims is his company's most important release ever. One minute before your vacation, you receive a poorly prepared file hand-off kit comprising software for translation, documentation, help systems, marketing material, etc. To top it off, your client contact forgot to appoint a replacement contact during his vacation - so you're on your own.

Deibjerg, Thomas. GALAxy Newsletter (2007). Articles>Language>Localization>Collaboration


How Far Should the European Union Reach?

How far will the Single Market, that is the European Union, reach? I think that it is inevitable that the EU will expand to include 40+ Member States. This is contested by some politicians and citizens alike, but the more information and background available, the more people are in favor of this vision.

Zahorka, Hans-Juergen. GALAxy Newsletter (2006). Articles>Language>Localization>Europe


How TMS Developers Pitch Their Wares to LSPs

For those of you keeping score, TMS often gets sold under the moniker of "globalization management system" (GMS); we have long found that term to be a gross distortion of what these systems actually do, which is manage translation workflow. That's a critical function, but by no means could a so-called GMS help companies or governments deal with gnarly cross-border issues such as immigration, energy, industrial development, and national sovereignty.

Sargent, Benjamin B. GALAxy Newsletter (2007). Articles>Content Management>Translation


Implementing a Global Content Management System: Some Tips from the Front

Implementing a Global Content Management system is serious business and we decided that we would engage three senior localization managers from our team to oversee the implementation. By then, we had already obtained budget approvals and assigned the implementation team to identify localization requirements and survey types of files used across the whole company.

Schlegel, Anna and Eva Klaudinyova. GALAxy Newsletter (2007). Articles>Content Management>Localization>Case Studies


The Importance of Localization Education: Goals of the Localization Certification Program

Over 230 countries, 6,700 languages, 147 currencies, 24 time zones — the Web allows companies to traverse these barriers and reach consumers worldwide.

Singh, Nitish. GALAxy Newsletter (2007). Articles>Certification>Education>Localization


Just Translate Please: a Message to the Industry

Ah, life in the localization industry ain’t easy. For twenty years now we have been preaching and proclaiming how important and precious our profession is. And still our customers won’t listen. They keep driving the prices down and now they also want everything to be done quicker and quicker. Where does this end?

van der Meer, Jaap. GALAxy Newsletter (2005). Articles>Language>Localization>Translation


Localization Maturity Model

Many organizations will pass the same milestones on their way to localizing their wares or their communication channels. Common Sense Advisory decided that it was high time to document the organizational, process, and technology landmarks of localization so that companies new to the process can benefit from the experiences of those who preceded them. From our many discussions and interviews over the past few years, we extracted the critical milestones for what we have named the “localization maturity model” (LMM).

DePalma, Donald A. GALAxy Newsletter (2006). Articles>Language>Localization


Managing Translation for Global Applications

Rather than dealing with globalization (a particularly vague term for many people anyway), TMS systems focus on one major consequence of going global – the need to manage multiple streams of foreign-language content at a website, in a publishing system, for marketing collateral, or in a call center. Unlike your average CMS, these solutions have been optimized around three core technologies.

DePalma, Donald A. GALAxy Newsletter (2007). Articles>Content Management>Translation>Localization


Marcom Transcreation: Branding, Strategy and Communication for Asian Market Entry

Developing a seamless marketing communication strategy for Asia is often viewed by western corporations as a monumental task given the region's social, linguistic, political, ethnic, and religious affinities. The rapid merging of international markets in securing new clientele and revenue generation, driven by trade globalization and rising product/service sophistication of overseas clientele necessitates that western companies entering the Asian arena possess an appreciation of customized marcom for specific audiences. The key is to find a balance between preserving one's global branding assets and refining one's marcom content for the given audience.

Lee, Leon. GALAxy Newsletter (2007). Articles>Business Communication>Marketing>Asia


Maturity Levels for Localization Suppliers

The brief level descriptions I share here reflect my own interpretation. For details, please read the full paper; it is well worth the effort! It is not my intention to discuss their levels, but to offer some additional ideas based on CSA’s concepts. The white paper describes how a localization buyer evolves from ad hoc solutions at Level 1 through more and more advanced processes, to a full integration of localization into production.

Danielsen, Joergen. GALAxy Newsletter (2006). Articles>Language>Localization


Opportunities for the Localization Job Seeker

The changing economic climate of the past few years has meant changing realities for the job seeker looking for opportunities in localization (L10n). Industry players, priorities, and technologies have changed. This calls for flexibility and intelligent strategies on the part of professionals seeking to stay ahead in their careers.

Salas, Larry. GALAxy Newsletter (2007). Careers>Language>Localization>Translation


People, People Who Need People

Your best sales person has just been headhunted elsewhere, your strategic account manager for your biggest client is soon off on maternity leave - or paternity, depending on where you are, there's a large new project coming in and you'll need to hire new project managers with a specific technical experience and German, plus an engineer, and one of the new recruits is not working out. Being a hiring manager sometimes feel like it doesn't rain but pours.

Larsen, Inger. GALAxy Newsletter (2007). Articles>Project Management>International


Recruiting Freelance Translators: the SDL Approach

It is important to use a wide variety of sources in order to maximize the reach of your search and ensure that you are making contact with the best candidates with relevant skills and subject knowledge to match your requirements. SDL uses not only its own website to advertise the types of translators it is currently looking for, but also works in conjunction with numerous independent industry websites and databases to refresh and increase the pool of freelance translators available for the company’s projects. Over time, the company has developed a wide network of sources, to ensure it can access the best translator talent.

Dann, Peter. GALAxy Newsletter (2007). Careers>Management>Translation>Localization


A Sampling of Client Requirements and Vendor Challenges

PTC, a leading supplier of PLM (Product Lifecycle Management) software, derives 60 percent of its revenues from non-US markets. Quality translations at reasonable cost and quick time-to-market are essential to our global outreach. For success in our endeavors, we depend greatly on our localization vendors. This article gives an overview of PTC requirements that our language service providers (LSPs) struggle with periodically.

Kirchner, Georg. GALAxy Newsletter (2007). Articles>Language>Translation>Case Studies


Translation Commoditization: Some Recipes for Defending Ourselves

If Oscar Wilde were alive and well and working in the localization business today, he would probably describe the “Procurement Executive” as a person “who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing”.

Husbands, Gordon. GALAxy Newsletter (2004). Articles>Language>Translation


The Translation Quality Lottery

Language service providers (LSPs) the world over contend that their key differentiator is quality. If every LSP offers excellent quality, then there is no differentiation among suppliers of translation and localization services. Are you giving buyers what they are looking for? Are you exceeding their expectations? Is there more you could do to differentiate your services from your competitors?

Beninatto, Renato. GALAxy Newsletter (2007). Articles>Language>Translation>Localization


What Do LSPs Look for in Software They Buy?

Our research methodology at Common Sense Advisory begins with the money and only then proceeds to content, services, and technology. Thus, our first question queries LSPs about their spending plans for the coming year.

DePalma, Donald A. GALAxy Newsletter (2007). Articles>Language>Localization>Surveys



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