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Will Robots Leave Your Project Managers in the Dust?
Translation projects are no longer what they used to be. Back in the day, language service providers would land big-budget clients with predictable volumes of large projects that came with a variety of add-on services. But these aren’t so common anymore: Most jobs are small, rush, basic, and unpredictable in frequency. This has put tremendous

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Digital Marketing Adopts Software Development Trends
Competing for mindshare in the global attention game is serious business, and many successful companies will fail in the coming decade because of gaps in their digital strategies. The rules for digital campaign management change as fast – or even faster – than most companies can adapt to and follow. But as the marketing profession wakes

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How Strong is Your Vendor Management Function?
Many language service providers use their ISO 17100 certification (formerly EN 15038) to bolster claims of process strength when it comes to supply chain management. In CSA Research’s recent interviews on vendor management at LSPs, we found wide variations in terms of organizational maturity of the function – regardless of certifications

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Not Your Grandmother’s Portal
We recently spoke to more than 20 companies about their translation management portals, finding a strong link between LSP software investments and client expectations for convenience and speed. We’ve tracked LSP technologies for over 10 years, and it’s clear we’ve reached a tipping point – translation suppliers have to get on

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Localization at the Speed of Agile – Hop on Board
All types of software – from the largest ERP application to the smallest mobile app – are going Agile. If your developers haven’t made the move yet, they almost certainly will – through an acquisition or a commitment to deliver faster and move closer to customers. But beware, Agile causes current localization production models

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Low-Cost Solution Arrives for International Payments
Cross-border payments create challenges for language service providers (LSPs) as well as the freelance community. Beyond simple payment terms, when an agency decides to work with a translator in a different country, the linguist has to agree to a preset payment currency, payment method, and bank transfer fees that are often to their disadvantage. The

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Calling All Project Managers at Translation Companies
Common Sense Advisory today launched a survey on translation project managers’ (PM) responsibilities, which is the first of its kind in the language services industry. In the last decade, project managers at translation agencies have seen drastic changes in their job descriptions. Technologies such as translation memory, translation management

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Understanding the Role of the Project Management Office
Common Sense Advisory recently interviewed 30 professionals working in project or group management. Our research demonstrated that enterprises struggle with organizing and integrating the project management function within the enterprise. We define a project management office (PMO) as any group of project managers organized as a department to serve

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Elanex Accelerates Translation Portal with Intelligent Workflow Automation
Our research has long shown that demand for translation continues to grow at a fast clip. On the other hand, stagnant translator productivity endangers the supply of high-quality translation services. To bridge this demand-supply mismatch, we recommended that buyers and suppliers of translation invest in the human workforce, improve processes, and use

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A Review of Language Service and Technology Predictions for 2011
Predictions are a popular pastime for industry analyst and research firms in every sector, and the market for language services and technology is no different. How did we fare with our predictions for 2011? Marketers of everyday products feature built-in language support. Based on our research on global product localization, we predicted that

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Much Ado about Standards – Finally
Just as LISA shuttered its site at the end of February, it hosted a Standards Summit near Boston. The Summit drew a small but dedicated cadre of professionals interested in setting standards for the language sector. Delegates represented industry associations, language service providers (LSPs), academics, language tool suppliers, and a small group

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Lionbridge Translation Workspace Aims to Disrupt Industry
This week, Lionbridge announced the upcoming release of Translation Workspace, the long-promised production management system that it says will be available early in 2010. The company will offer its software as a service (SaaS) product to freelancers, translation agencies, and enterprises -- although it's aiming its initial marketing effort squarely

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LSPs Must Adapt and Adopt, or Be Assimilated
The 10th annual conference of the American Translators Association Translation Company Division (ATA-TCD) was held this past weekend in Quebec City, Canada. At first glance, the titles of the presentations seemed to cover familiar topics, but in the actual discussions, both the speakers and participants evoked a sense of urgency and a need for "something

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Interoperability Will Be Critical as Language Tools Gear Up for Content's Modular Future
The choice of which computer-aided translation (CAT) or translation environment (TEnT) tool is not a simple one, primarily because translators and agencies have varying needs depending on their clientele. Over time, we believe translation suppliers will gravitate to those solutions offering the most integrations and the greatest interoperability. Freelancers

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News Flash: There's No Avoiding Death and Taxes
Vendor management for language services involves more than finding and paying some freelancer translators or LSPs. Right after tax season in the United States last year, we received the following message from the president of a language service provider: "A couple months ago we were notified that because we issued a 1099 to a Texas freelancer, we must

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The End of Localization Taylorism
In the antediluvian days of Translation As We Knew and Loved It, companies would translate, edit, then proofread (TEP). TEP is based on Gutenberg’s printing requirements, where the author submitted the manuscript, someone typeset it, and somebody else reviewed the galley proofs as many times as necessary to make sure that no typos made it to the

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Localization Maturity Model
For many companies localization is a black art, while others have honed international product and website adaptation into a science. To help companies benefit from the work of others, Common Sense Advisory created the localization maturity model (LMM), an adaptation of the software industry's capability maturity model (CMM). A CMM is a reference model

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