fine Expression developed a custom translation app for an international automotive giant, thereby revolutionising an established, but resource-intensive translation workflow.
Some background information to set the scene:
once a month, our native-language translators were invited to the client’s research and development centre, where they were then tasked with validating and translating texts for navigation systems into 19 languages. In some cases, this involved several hundred labels to be processed in a complex Excel spreadsheet. Following the validation step, the colleagues in the test lab imported the texts into the navigation system, where their pixel length was checked. The feedback from this step was then compiled in a spreadsheet and sent around the world to be corrected by our native translators. The result? Numerous loops, a monstrous spreadsheet and inefficient workflows.
Bastian Graff, CTO of fine Expression reminisces: “19 languages, thousands of labels and an international project team. This was a very exciting project for us, but it certainly had its challenges. We spoke to our contact – a tech-savvy employee at the development centre – and began developing ideas to improve the situation. How could we make the process more efficient and map any requirements directly in the first translation step? An initial solution based on Visual Basic provided the pixel length check of translations directly within the spreadsheet, but presented users worldwide with installation, compatibility and operational problems. We needed a different solution.”
We needed an app.
Working closely with our client, the programming experts from fine Expression developed a web-based Ruby on Rails solution. It provides a platform for both user and project management and enables lablels to be uploaded directly in a browser on a PC or smartphone - and of course in an Excel spreadsheet too! After the languages have been assigned, each native-language technical translator in the team receives an automated notification and a personal task list.
But that’s not all! The app is also linked to the translation memory stored in fine Expression’s Corporate Language Portal, i.e. the international car manufacturer’s own corporate dictionary. All translations and corrections are thus saved directly in the translation memory. If· a label has already been edited once in this, or another translation project with our client, the translator automatically receives a pre-translation which they can validate or correct - all while taking into account the pixel length and other attributes. Since all translation data is stored online, every member of the international project team can access it directly - at any time, from anywhere.
In order for these 19 different languages to be imported into the navigation test system, the labels are simply exported again as Excel files. Innovative, practical, good! And the result? Up to 93 percent more label translations in the same time. App-solutely fantastic!
Project management Bastian Graff
Chief Technical Officer
Industry: Automotive, IT
Languages: Arabic, Czech, Danish, Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Korean, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Slovak, Spanish, Swedish, Turkish.