Services designed to meet all of your language requirements
We can meet your goals by translating and localising any type of content, medium and format for a wide range of industries. By providing cross-cutting support for all aspects of your business, we enable you to approach your internationalisation consistently.
If the least you expect is to have a high-quality translation delivered on time, you will also need to be able to rely on advice and solutions that are precisely adapted to your projects and challenges. And that is exactly what we offer!
Our linguistic services
A varied and tailor-made offer to meet needs that we can establish together
You are planning a translation project. What do you really need? What are your objectives, what is your target audience, what media do you use? Is this a very specific project?
When we receive a request, we estimate the work required by looking at four main aspects: word count, source and target language(s), the field in question and the format of your source files (see iconography).
Quality as a backbone
Your main objective will be to receive a high-quality document within the promised timeframe. Ours is to fully meet that objective. Quality is at the heart of everything we do at Version internationale. Our processes were all designed with this aim in mind, and our ISO 17100 certification is proof of our approach.
After examining your document, we offer you the most relevant and suitable solution for your situation.
As you may already know, you can choose from several levels of service. We will recommend the most appropriate one based on your requirements. You can always count on sound advice (See our packages)
What is the translation process like today?
Gone are the days when the task of translation consisted in mundanely writing a typed text in another language. Over the past thirty years, the world of translation has become very high tech.
Today, specialised tools within the industry enable us to handle technically complex projects. This means the profession has evolved dramatically. But linguists remain the ultimate guarantors of the quality of what we deliver.
The use of translation software such as CAT tools (Computer-Assisted Translation) and Quality Assurance tools (QA) enables us to handle your content in a highly precise and sophisticated way. Translation companies have dozens of systems to choose from, including the latest generation of Cloud-based tools. No professional translator works without the help of one of these tools. Today, for example, one or more termbases can be attached to the translatable documents to highlight the approved terms that appear within it. It is then up to the translators to use them or disregard them if they are not suitable for the context. The extreme complexity of this world finally led to the development of TMS tools (Translation Management System). This makes it possible to manage a translation flow from start to finish by following processes and facilitating access to various operations and an efficient back office.
Recently, the progress of machine translation has made it suitable for use in certain contexts. This innovation reinforces the need to rely on experienced translators who can edit texts by carrying out a very precise and critical proofreading of the target documents against the source documents. Machines haven’t yet got the better of the human touch, but they have changed the way people approach translation. But humans remain the master insofar as it is the translators that feed the machine with all the words they translate.
At Version internationale, we choose whether or not to use machine translation depending on how confident we are that it will produce a high-quality result. While using machine translation reduces costs, it does not mean that you can go without linguists. It is best to have two linguists rework the output: one to carry out an in-depth edit and the other for a final check. You will make an overall saving on the time spent handling the entire project.
Who works around your project?
The first (and non-negotiable) prerequisite for a high-quality translation is for it to be done in the target language by a native linguist. The translators are, of course, the main characters in your project, but a project manager is essential to orchestrating it (all the more so if it is a complex project). Whether it is multilingual projects, specific and varied formats, huge word counts involving teams of linguists rather than one person, or technical projects requiring engineering, project management is essential for a smooth flow. It also ensures that you have a single point of contact who manages all the ins and outs and fully understands your needs. This means you have a set of key resources at your disposal, ranging from translators to IT engineers, to provide you with cross-cutting support for your projects.
Translation by subject area
Most translators have an area of specialisation. Knowing how to designate suitable resources is part of our expertise, as well as of our commitment to quality. Our team can therefore count on linguists who are categorised by area of expertise. Whether it is digital marketing dedicated to the new technology sector, medical patents or sales contracts in the industrial sector, every piece of content deserves to be taken care of by a linguist who is perfectly in tune with the subject. Your sector most likely uses a precise vocabulary that you must follow. Any good linguist also keeps abreast of developments in their translation sector, so they can write about it using up-to-date language.
We translate into any language
Over many years, we have established a network of some fifty partner translation agencies across the globe, who are among the best. We have established close relationships with them that have often developed beyond pure business. They enable us to manage projects in a wide range of languages, some of which are rare and sometimes even dialects.
We also have extensive experience in handling multilingual projects that require high responsiveness and a proven aptitude for intercultural management.
Our translators can let you reap the benefits of their cultural approach
In the field of translation, localisation is used to describe two concepts. It is therefore important to clarify the use of the term. Either way, it can do a lot for you.
Localisation, as its name suggests, incorporates the notion of local specificity. Most of the time, this is the country that you are addressing. It therefore goes beyond pure and simple translation by adding a cultural dimension. This approach is essentially inherent to internationalisation strategies for products and services and is adapted to a geographic or sociological target audience.
Any smart translator would add a touch of localisation if it were to bring added value to the translation and help audiences to better understand it and engage with it.
Localisation: a bridge between cultures
In each country, words carry a cultural meaning. Their subtlety must therefore be conveyed by a translator who is accustomed to a country’s usage and understands the linguistic nuances there. The localisation process requires a deep understanding of the source and target cultures.
The conversion of units of measure and currencies, and even the adaptation of national holidays are the basic level. But the task goes so far as recommending formatting adaptations, colour choices and a set of cultural markers. For example, you may need to completely rethink the structure of a presentation, as well as its illustrative content.
Localisation: an essential tool for your marketing strategy
It is vital to know how to address an audience whose culture you don’t know enough about in order to showcase your services and products to them. The industry is full of funny anecdotes about communication campaigns that have missed the point, or worse, triggered the opposite effect from what they intended. When it is not done in a skilled and strategic way, you want to avoid negative buzz! So, be really careful with the words, tone and images you decide to share with your new target audience.
Whether it is for a slogan, a tagline or the name of a product, marketing translation relies on expertise that subtly combines the skills of a linguist with those of a copywriter.
Localisation services therefore add a consulting dimension to translation. The ‘localiser translator’ is directly involved in the internationalisation of your company, insofar as they are an expert in the target market. They bring a business perspective by helping to make the product and market align through their linguistic decisions.
The most relevant areas: all marketing content, user manuals, medical instructions and video subtitling.
IT localisation: expertise offered by VI since 1990
In our line of business, we refer to localisation when it comes to the IT field, in reference to the process of adapting software, content or a website for a given market.
Software localisation goes beyond simply translating its user interface. It adapts it to linguistic and cultural norms, and also involves a very precise technical approach. The process draws on various areas of expertise. Traditional translation is usually done once the source document has been finalised. Localisation, on the other hand, occurs while the source product is still under development. The translation of software strings often begins when the software is only at the beta version stage. That is why projects like this draw on a number of resources, including project management, software engineering, functional or cosmetic tests, and desktop publishing.
As we have seen, in addition to the linguistic aspects of a project, many areas must be adapted. When it comes to a user interface, this involves shortening longer sentences in the target language or even changing keyboard shortcuts, for example. More generally, it applies to units of measurement, number formats, address formats, date and time formats, default fonts, case differences, character sets, sorting and hyphenation. Financial and legal aspects must also be considered. Payment methods, currency conversion and taxes, the regulations in force in each country and data protection must also be examined. Properly localised software should appear to have been created directly for the target market.
- Printer, scanner, camera drivers, etc.
- Software drivers for medical equipment and analysers
- Industrial applications
- All kinds of business management applications
- Customer relationship management applications
- Statistical applications
- Audio and video applications
- CAD and CAM applications
- Supply chain applications
Knowing how to adapt your marketing content with flavour and relevance
If you want to enter a new market, translating your marketing documents and content will be a decisive step. For translators, captivating your new audience with a message that is as powerful as it is in the source language is an exhilarating challenge.
Transcreation is a process quite commonly referred to as ‘creative translation’. The rules for a good translation are usually very strict. However, transcreation requires translators to move further away from the source text in order to focus on the intent of the message and to ensure that it is rendered effectively in the target language.
For marketing translation, linguists draw on the power of evocative words or expressions to suggest something else and subtly evoke other realities. It is the spirit of the text and the positioning of the product or service being showcased that take precedence. This requires reflecting on the commercial and cultural environment to establish how to convey the message in a deeply resonant way, beyond simple comprehension That is the hallmark of creative marketing, and that is why transcreation must be able to rely on the skills of a linguist who is experienced in this practice. Only creative talents can add a touch of emotion to the linguistic and cultural dimension.
Cultural particularities, which are difficult to translate, are potentially confusing and can create readability issues for your product. So, pay attention to the original message, as a text can offend a customer in one country and spark interest in another. As such, you can opt for a consulting service from the initial creation phase if you know that you will have to adapt the message later. Each culture has its own ideas, beliefs and taboos, but also its own modes of verbal, non-verbal and written communication. It is for this reason in particular that an in-depth knowledge and understanding of each culture is an essential prerequisite.
As you will have understood, tone, context and style are therefore just as important as words in reaching your target audience. The transcreation approach enables you to adapt puns, taglines and slogans in a way that sparks interest. The stakes therefore extend far beyond a good translation, as transcreation directly contributes to your commercial success. > See our article on this topic.
The ‘corporate language’ of a company is built around three components, namely voice, tone and terminology, with this last component certainly having the greatest impact on your image. You handle this aspect carefully in French, therefore it is best to continue to make this effort in the languages into which you are translating, so it has a positive impact on your international approach.
This strategy has several benefits. First of all, and although it may seem surprising, the preliminary task of building a termbase ultimately helps you save money. By isolating the keywords that form the bulk of the ‘vocabulary’ used by your company early on in your internationalisation process, you will be working on a number of aspects.
First of all, it will enable you to make sure that terminology is understood, shared and used consistently in your company. That is not as obvious as it seems.
Secondly, working with terminology translators in the target languages will enable you to fine-tune this database. Indeed, linguists will ask questions in order to clarify, for example, the context of use of a keyword, the differences in meaning between two closely related words and any difficulties in translating into a given language, etc. This can lead you to discover disparities in usage between services for the same term, obsolete or redefined terms, or those belonging to one family of products but not allowed for another.
This careful groundwork takes time, but it lays a very solid foundation for successful internationalisation. It is best to do this before a huge localisation project. In fact, it will be easy to carry out for a couple of languages. It will pave the way for languages to come. Given the success of some of our customers, we know that the speed of your international deployment can sometimes accelerate, almost unexpectedly!
So, how should you go about it?
We can guide you through this process, both in terms of the methodology and the tools to use.
Our partner teams are used to this task, which we carry out on a routine business, and will help you build a framework in which your company’s language will flourish.
They will continue this process with each translation because a termbase is never finished. A new product, feature or innovation in your market bring new terms to describe and promote them. So, keeping your termbase alive and growing is an ongoing effort.
Internal benefit: you can use this termbase so that your company ‘speaks with one voice’, thus making your corporate language perfectly consistent and unified.
Audio and video
Your multilingual communication in sound and image
The figures for the number of video views speak for themselves. It seems that almost 80% of online traffic today is generated by video content and that 70% of internet users are more likely to buy a product online after watching a video. With the internet, video has come to be the preferred communication channel between businesses and consumers. Whether it is product presentations, testimonials or entertainment, YouTube reigns supreme on the internet, and some companies have understood the benefits of having their own channel, both for B2C and B2B approaches.
And when it comes to the production of fiction and documentary films, streaming and the variety of devices (displays) have reshuffled the cards with respect to how we ‘consume’ films and videos. Netflix is a good example of this trend, which has now become a benchmark.
Against this backdrop, it is easy to see how the international reach has created a huge need for translation. In fact, the localisation industry is directly involved in this fast-moving trend.
At Version internationale, we can handle your projects that require anything from a simple transcription to dubbing and voice-over. Our experienced team manages multilingual projects and can offer you the best option according to your time and budget constraints.
Transcription and subtitling, a winning solution
Whether it is to convey a marketing message, broadcast the content of a conference or promote a product by translating the speech in video or audio format, we work with native speakers to transcribe your audio and video files. The recorded words are stored as digital audio files. We can deliver them back to you in your chosen format. These transcriptions can then be used as texts that can be translated for distribution in any medium, or they can even be used as a basis for subtitling. The transcriptions contain time stamps (timecodes), which enable you to locate each sentence in a video and then make it easier to create subtitles.
From a strategic point of view, subtitling is an option that enables you to significantly expand your audience, as your content can be understood by a wider group of people. Subtitling consists of synchronising the text to the dialogue and displaying it in the lower part of the video image. We can carry out standard captioning, which provides a transcription of the spoken dialogue and narration, or closed captioning. The latter meets the needs of deaf and hard-of-hearing audiences by including sounds and sound effects that directly contribute to a better understanding of the visuals. The process of creating and embedding subtitles is a meticulous job due to time codes, adjustments and, in some cases, languages with complex alphabets or special characters (Arabic, Cyrillic or Chinese and Japanese to name a few). However, despite this work requiring specific expertise, subtitling is the cheapest technique to significantly increase the impact of your videos.
Voice-over and dubbing, your voice in any language
Voice-over consists of adding an external voice to the video. It is a narrative device that has long been used in films, documentaries and adverts, and more recently in video games, online product demos and motion design formats, which are currently all the rage.
Recording voice-over in multiple languages first involves transcribing and then translating the source content in order to record a new audio file in the target language(s). The original voice-over is then ‘overwritten’ by the new one, which will have been translated into the desired language.
While it may seem easier and cheaper to add subtitles to your video, you should carefully consider your content and its purpose. Subtitles can divert the viewer’s attention from the image, while voice-over enables better immersion. You can be the final judge.
An alternative to dubbing, voice-over enables you to add a voice in a target language on top of the original voice. The latter becomes background sound, so the original version is kept. We usually choose a voice that is close to the original for a more natural experience.
While a high-quality translation is an essential prerequisite, post-production must be handled very carefully. Timing the voice-over slightly after the original and adjusting the sound so that the voice level is clearly audible while making sure the background sound can still be heard must be well orchestrated. The sound engineer also manages the voice actors performing the text. In some cases, an artistic director guides the actors as they perform, although this practice is mostly used for dubbing projects. Using voice-over as a narrative device is particularly recommended for corporate and commercial audio-visual productions when dubbing is not suitable for the format.
Dubbing, which consists of replacing the original actors’ voices with the voices of actors speaking another language, provides a comfortable experience for users, as they are naturally immersed in their mother tongue. The biggest challenge involved in dubbing is making the actor’s lip movements coincide with the voice-over in another language, while giving the impression that it is the original version. We have all seen dubbing done so badly that the films have become laughable. But this experience is becoming rarer these days, as modern tools make dubbing easier to carry out well.
The dubbing technique lends itself perfectly to live-action and animated films, although it is easier to do in the latter case as they usually offer greater synchronisation between sound and image.
Dubbing is ultimately not widely used in the corporate world. It is more common to use voice-over, more in the interests of suitability between the format type and the process than for financial reasons.
The importance of adapting page layout
File formats are usually the last thing on your mind in a translation process. However, this is often what slows down a project and extends deadlines. It’s best to understand how specific files are translated ahead of the project.
When it comes to files, you must check that the source files given to the translation team are perfectly usable. Unnecessary back and forth could impact the smooth running of the project. Whether it is for classic formats like Word, Excel and PDF, more delicate formats such as InDesign, Illustrator and AutoCAD, or even more specific file types, you must ensure that you have a clear grasp of the source files. For example, a PDF may just be the saving format for a different source file, such as an InDesign file. In this case, it must absolutely be sent with its internal links (fonts, images, etc.). This will make the stages of the translation project smoother. Without understanding how it works, it’s sometimes easy to assume that any file will do. And while there is a lot we can do, even magic has its limits!
Don’t try to extract the text from your source files, just share the files with us!
Thinking that it is complex to translate a file, many people waste precious time extracting the text just to reinsert it once translated. Thanks to IT processing, we can translate these files directly from their original format. Our translation software tools are able to handle texts in many formats. You then receive a file in the same format, the integrity of which will have been fully respected. You will avoid time-consuming copying and pasting and, above all, sources of error (duplicate text, deleted words, etc.).
The layout may need to be reworked.
As the target language often does not have the same length as the source language, it is often necessary to rework the layout before use and distribution. Languages such as German and Russian, for example, have particularly long words, which make the text longer. This is called the ‘expansion rate’. This requires changes to the layout. Particular attention must be paid ahead of the project, in particular for projects in the IT field, for which navigation elements may prove difficult to translate due to a lack of anticipated space.
You must also be particularly careful about hyphenation in foreign languages. We strongly recommend that you avoid graphic designers who can only work with Latin alphabets and who attempt to handle the reintegration of texts written in other alphabets and in languages that use ideograms or are written from right to left such as Arabic and Hebrew. Generally speaking, only native speakers are able to judge whether a hyphen is acceptable in their mother tongue.
As you may have guessed, these linguistic features require layout adjustments, such as resizing graphics and fonts, and organising available space, etc.
We often receive texts with images, diagrams and tables that require special treatment because they also contain translatable text. We need to be able to extract this text, translate it and then reinsert the translations into the final file. This kind of case ultimately involves the translation of text and the translation of images. This is common layout work, for which we also need the source files.
Sometimes a source file has been lost, and a hard copy of the document is all that remains. Depending on the quality of the available document, OCR software enables us to recover perfectly usable text and image files. In any case, we are always looking for a solution!
For specific documents requiring desktop publishing, you must remember that QA steps will always be necessary to ensure that all the graphics in the source document are consistent with those in the target document. These days, we can do almost everything and adapt anything if we have source files that can be used or made usable again.
We can adapt your international content strategy by integrating SEO logic.
It is essential to understand the behaviour of internet users in the target country before even thinking about SEO. What are the most popular social media platforms and who is using them? You can localise your SEO once these aspects have been clearly defined.
A cultural approach is more than essential here, too. What are the most searched keywords? The translation of the source-language term may not be relevant. This means that if you are considering improving your SEO, you should consider this before having your content translated. Translating with the aim of producing search-engine optimised content relies on a different approach from that used in more traditional translation.
You must test the lexical fields specific to each language separately and not just translate them.
SEO and localising your website
If you have your website localised, multilingual SEO is not an option. If you developed your site to capture a new audience and you failed to engage them as much as you hoped, it would be frustrating from both a strategic and financial perspective.
With a localisation approach, your content becomes understandable and potentially appealing both linguistically and culturally. That’s the first side of the coin. And if your content has been adapted well to your target audience and what you’re offering is clear, you’ll want it to be disseminated. This is where you’ll need the ‘SEO layer’ to generate traffic on your site and boost your visibility.
We translate with SEO in mind, just as you write your content with your SEO in mind. A lexical analysis, a test in the various SEO tools on the market (SEMrush, Google Ads, etc.) and recommendations for the technical optimisation of the site’s key components, namely title and description tags, Hn markup, image ALT tags, internal links, etc. There are so many levers for promoting your site’s visibility in search engines.
If you have already made a list of keywords in the source language, we can translate these keywords and any optimised components by testing their SEO relevance for each target country. If you have not yet done that, it is worth carrying out a complete semantic study of your site to establish a thesaurus of keywords. This will be used to optimise the translation of the site’s source material and then approve the translatable content based on its SEO relevance.
Your blog and social media posts
You should go about translating content for your digital strategy in the same way. Articles, posts, landing pages and white papers should be tested. Most of the time, you will have already followed language recommendations in the source language. We’ll use them or, if necessary, we’ll go back to studying your keywords. The particular nature of this type of project often lies in tight deadlines that require high responsiveness from our teams. Posts are sometimes published shortly after the other. Being able to benefit from an established and approved SEO lexical field is a real advantage.
See our article on the subject > Localisation and SEO, how should you adapt your international strategy?
Proofreading and editing
Creating high-quality content is increasingly strategic
A good translation should limit any linguistic subjectivity as much as possible. In order to prevent this (the translator will not necessarily be aware of their own subjectivity), having an editor take a fresh look at the work carried out is the only way to get a good result.
Essentially, the checking step is inextricably linked to our commitment to quality and reinforces the saying, ‘Two pairs of eyes are better than one’.
This step helps to:
- avoid meaning errors caused by ambiguity in the source text,
- improve the style and limit the impact of an overly personal style,
- check the translation because even the best translators can leave typos,
- take some distance to ensure harmonisation,
- get an overview to ensure consistency between all content in projects involving several translators working in parallel.
Several validation stages
The editing stage, which is also called revision or review and includes proofreading and corrections, is essential. It is a lot more than a quick and simple proofreading, since the editor/reviewer compares the translation with the source text sentence by sentence. They try to identify misunderstandings, spelling and grammar mistakes, clunky style, etc., and make improvements by looking at the text with a sharp eye.
Depending on the document’s complexity, use and stakes, an additional final review step may be necessary. At Version internationale, we always include it by default.
Note that when using machine translation, there is a thorough proofreading process because the human touch is still required to ensure quality. It is therefore essential that a ‘post-editor’ (a term used to describe the proofreading task that follows machine translation) compares the output from the machine with the source text. The post-editor will be followed by a second proofreader to ensure the final quality of the translation.
On your end, you have every right to request a lighter check, but in full knowledge of the facts. You can opt for this solution if the translations don’t have high stakes or visibility. However, make sure that a complete editing step (source and target comparison) is included in your service whenever your content will be available to the public. Your credibility is at stake.
You may also want to check the quality of texts translated by other service providers and make sure they are consistent. We can offer you a review service to provide feedback and corrections. We must have the source text for this, as we will do the same work as for a standard editing task. We can also just correct spelling and grammar.
Marketing content makes over 70% of consumers feel closer to a business. Good written communication is essential for a business. It directly influences the company’s brand image and indirectly influences its economic performance.
Do you often need to create editorial content to sustain your magazines, sites, blogs or social media?
Do you have to write technical instructions or user manuals, but you don’t have the time or the skills?
Are you looking for flexible and efficient resources to support you during busy times?
Would you like to outsource the creation of editorial content?
Version internationale offers editorial services for your recurring and ad hoc requests.
Promptly available resources
We have access to a large number of skilled resources, including professional copywriters and journalists, but also engineers, doctors, lawyers, professors and digital marketing specialists. These writers strengthen your in-house team and can adapt to your projects.
Our production methodology can be broken down into the following stages:
- The client identifies and shares their requirements.
- We carry out a preliminary study of existing documents in the company.
- We gather information relating to the company and/or the product through meetings, phone conversations, or even immersing ourselves temporarily within the company if possible.
- We identify factors to be taken into account by establishing the target audience, language level, tone, document formats and any existing illustrations.
- We research additional information if necessary
- We sort and select all the information.
- We carry out a writing phase according to the specifications and a pre-established schedule.
- We carry out an interim approval step to ensure that the writing meets the requirements.
- We deliver the documents to the client.
- The client reviews the documents.
- We make corrections if necessary
Our skills and resources enable us to write the following content:
- Press articles
- Press releases
- Internal communications
- Manuals, instructions, user guides
- Technical documentation
- Sales pitches
- Commercial brochures
- Annual reports
- IT and technical assistance
- Technical and maintenance documentation
- Blog posts
- Social media posts
Our experience as a reputed translation company has given us high linguistic standards. There is real consistency across our copywriting offer and our range of translation services.
This means we can offer you:
- The expertise of a skilled and experienced team.
- A tone adapted to each of your messages, your media and your target audiences
- Language that is both fluid and structured
- The use of accurate terms and compliance with the glossary provided by the client
- A prompt service
- Excellent value for money
- Total confidentiality
- Harmonisation, standardisation and consistency between documents written consecutively throughout the collaboration
- The smooth running of your writing project
- Anticipation of the particular features of your translatable content, so it can be translated under the best conditions.
In-house tools to make your life easier
Like all of our clients, you need the most efficient and time-saving translation process possible. We therefore provide you with in-house tools and tailor-made methods that make it possible to work in a smart and seamless way. Thanks to this, Version internationale can guarantee high-quality translations that are delivered on time and meet our clients’ expectations.
Here are the main tools that you can access free of charge throughout our service:
VI-eXchange is a web-based solution that enables everyone involved in a translation project (clients, reviewers, translators, project managers, etc.) to collaborate very easily and efficiently. Accessed via your internet browser, VI-eXchange is an intuitive and ergonomic platform that pulls together all the project’s key components (questions/answers, instructions, terminology, progress, etc.).
An essential tool, VI-eXchange gives everyone involved all the necessary answers without overwhelming them with irrelevant information, and avoiding a flood of emails, which quickly turn counterproductive.
Vi-eXchange is particularly valued by our clients with multilingual projects, as a large amount of information can be shared easily.
This Cloud-based extranet platform enables us to share documents with you, as per your needs, in a sophisticated way and with a high level of security and customisation.
Send us your large files in an instant, without going through an external transfer service. Our system is secured by a customised username and password. Using copy and paste or drag and drop, your files can be sent to us and to you (you can upload or download your files).
If you have your own tools and you would like us to use them, please let us know. We already do this for several of our clients.