Whether to Translate or Not?

If high quality human translation services were available at lower cost, organizations would undoubtedly translate more content. Stated in terms of economic theory, when the price of a good or service is lower on the demand curve, the quantity demanded is higher.

So the question for consumers of translation services remains, when is incurring the cost of translation services warranted and a good investment? One answer is:

  • When the cost of foregoing the price of translation services exceeds the cost of purchasing translation services.

This assessment is not always easy to make, but below are a few of the kinds of questions that might be considered:

  1. Will the deal get done without it?
  2. What will the effect on our workforce be (e.g., in terms of morale, performance, retention, etc.)?
  3. Does our organization incur an unacceptable risk in its absence?
  4. Do we realize a significant strategic benefit with it?
  5. Does this enhance our reach and/or strength of our connection with our customers?

These are just a few of the types of questions to consider to help establish the value of purchasing translation services, and help answer the question of whether to translate, or not.