Localization workflows are complex
Client, project, a language service provider (LSP), project manager, translators, reviewers: all multiplied across multiple languages and locations. With differing roles and communication requirements. Now add in the challenges of virtually everyone working remotely, and the person in the center, the project manager, has their hands full.
That’s why having a consistent communication plan and state of the art project management tools and protocols are essential. A poorly managed process can cause errors and omissions, slow turnaround time, and result in unnecessary duplication of effort. Legacy tools like email can actually complicate this process.
In recent years our communication options have expanded far beyond phone calls and email chains. We now have chat and messaging services like Google Hangouts and Slack that are designed to facilitate real-time communication. They allow us to organize threads by subject and relevant audience, all while keeping a record of the exchange. The same tools can facilitate video meetings, and with plugins, handle many other sharing tasks. However, they do have one shortcoming.
Workflows within translation management systems
Translation management platforms, like XTRF, are purpose-built to centralize all translation and localization processes in one working environment. However, until recently, to leverage the new communication tools mentioned above, a project manager, vendor, or client had to work in a separate messaging app, meaning the conversations and documents shared there existed outside of the platform.
To resolve this problem and further streamline the project management of complex language projects, we developed our XTRF Chat system operating within the XTRF environment. This gives our users a unified communication system that is instantly accessible, regardless of what aspect of the process is involved. Translators can clarify questions and changes can be easily communicated to stakeholders, without losing context.
The next level of project management communication tools
The benefits of an integrated communication tool are extensive:
- Reduced errors and omissions,
- Faster resolution of problems,
- The ability to introduce changes without starting over,
- Faster turnaround,
- More clarity across the entire project management process.
On top of all this, if issues do arise, a record of how they were handled via the chat record can determine best practices for avoiding those issues in the future. Properly managed, this communication process can finetune the entire translation and localization workflow for everyone involved.
Typical daily project management headaches resolved
The goal of developing a tool like XTRF Chat is a more integrated project management experience, eliminating issues with version control (multiple email attachments), crossed messages (too many CCs), and timeline management (slow or no responses to questions). These daily annoyances distract from the core project management task of delivering high-quality translation quickly, even when dozens of languages are involved.
Enhancing the communication abilities within the XTRF System eliminates many of these daily PM distractions. All while keeping clients in the loop and clear about the progress of their important translation and localization projects.