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Ensuring that your company is ready to go global means implementing the right processes and making sure they are working properly at multiple levels. With localization, and the Common Sense Advisory’s Localization Maturity Model in particular, solid, streamlined, and well-documented processes are key.

With this in mind, here are some important things every purchasing manager should consider.

Truly global content

Look closely at project costs. Are they higher than was forecast because of constant back and forth within and between teams? If so, is this because there is no actual process for global content management? Keep in mind that the absence of any formal process often leads to wasted effort.

Examine your processes (or lack thereof) for managing global content and supplying it to, and receiving it from, localization service providers (LSPs). Does your company have a single repository for approved terminology? Is the access and management of this repository formalized and transparent? If there are business processes in place, what are they and how could they be improved? If there isn’t any process in place, what do you think needs to be implemented?

The curse of rework

Consider how much you are paying for work that has already been done. While translation memories, glossaries, and style guides are valuable resources, they need to be managed carefully and updated constantly; otherwise, they can lead to poor quality work that costs you more in the long run.

Constant improvement

Is there an LSP that you use often for translations? If so, are they merely reactive, translating work as necessary, or are they proactive in coming up with process suggestions to reduce costs over the long-term? What happens when translated content is received? Does it include receiving working files that can be immediately integrated into your company’s own workflows? If not, it’s important to realize that a better process would save your internal teams a great deal of effort.

Setting priorities

What is the process for determining what should be translated and into which languages? Is it decided in an ad-hoc manner, or is the process in line with a well-thought-out strategy?

One of the first things you can do is list the languages you already localize, as well as the LSPs you currently work with. Do a content audit of pieces that have already been localized and detail the steps in your processes.

Have you thought about what steps you need in your localization process to best serve your company? Is website or software testing needed, for example?

Total cost of ownership

Consider what your engineers need to do to prepare a hand-off for localization. Are they aware of the best practices for localization? Do they know about the channels they can use to ensure the communication needed to produce consistent global content?

It’s important to ask yourself if the members of your internal teams know exactly what they need to do when they receive localized deliverables. How long does each step take? Can some of these steps be removed, or the time shortened? It’s a good idea to chat to your service provider to see if they can provide deliverables that ensure your team doesn’t have to follow any extra steps. These often include steps like copying and pasting information, renaming folders, zipping files, or saving documents in different formats.

At the end of the day, it’s vital to consider the entire workflow when defining processes. If you aren’t, it will probably lead to rework, which incurs extra costs and delays. Make sure you do consider the above factors, and formulate suitable answers. That way you are better able to make adjustments to your workflow to ensure that localization is a seamless part of your business processes.

Your processes should be in two parts:

Internal processes: Make sure that your internal processes are mapped out in detail. This way you are better equipped to help your internal teams do their part in the localization process.
External processes: Get involved in your external processes to ensure all globalization functions are aligned and occur seamlessly.

Your localization processes need to be proactive and streamlined. This may mean ironing out some of the processes that are already in place to ensure you aren’t leaking money to reworks and delays (which could damage your brand, launch, and client satisfaction).

You need to ensure that the daily operations are smoothed out and that this is done on a continual basis (as unexpected issues are likely to arise later on).

But you don’t have to do all of this alone. If you’re looking for the ultimate localization service providers, then look no further than Rubric. We use the Common Sense Advisory’s Localization Maturity Model to ensure that each stage of localization is effective and efficient. We will ensure that your company is localizing properly the first time around (without costly reworks and delays). Contact us to learn how you can get your processes on the right track today.

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