As they say, the devil is in the details. Consistency is a key element of a good translation. If your translation contains the name of an organisation or that of a city, you want to make sure that it is consistent throughout the text. In other words, once you have done your research and decided on the most appropriate translation, stick to it. For example, the capital city of Indonesia can be spelt Jakarta or Djakarta. Whatever your choice, that city should always be written the same way in your translation. The same goes for organisations. If you decide to translate ‘The Translation Service’ in French as ‘le Service de la traduction’, stick with it and don’t put ‘le Service de traduction’.
‘How can I ensure consistency?’ you may ask. Translation software such as Trados, SDL Studio, Wordfast, MemoQ, OmegaT, and others, usually has features to help you with consistency, such as translation memories, term bases and quality control functions that will point out any discrepancies. But there are plenty of ways to ensure consistency without the use of one of these programmes.
Using the Find function in Word is one way to make sure you always use the same spelling and/or the same name throughout your translation. This a quality check that you can perform once you have completed the translation and before you send it back to us. Another solution, which is helpful for longer translations, is to create a glossary, in Excel for instance, where you will be able to record all your terminology choices. That glossary will grow with the number of translations you do and will be a useful tool for any future translations, as you will have access to research that you have already done.
Feel free to leave a comment to share your tips and tricks with other TTS translators.