How Rubric Reduced Processing Time by 99% for MadCap Flare localization


reduction in processing time


week reduction in release time
November 1, 2023
A large multinational software company – which we'll fictionalize to call ClientServe for confidentiality – specializes in customer experience solutions. Working with organizations of all sizes, the company focuses on providing effortless, consistent, and personalized digital-first experiences for its customers.
The company’s online help is offered in 11 languages. This means that content translation and localization are vital for success.
Authored in Madcap Flare, the company wanted to scale more effectively across its markets but was held back by persistent issues around localization with their incumbent vendor.

The challenges: Inconsistency and miscommunication with a previous vendor

The documentation manager came up against significant roadblocks in the localization process. The content release was already behind schedule by 8 weeks because of delays caused by their incumbent localization vendor. Poor communication made a bad situation worse.
When she took over ClientServe's localization effort, the documentation manager conducted a thorough audit of the company's localization processes.
"The audit uncovered all kinds of issues, not only with process but also quality. We also had continuing problems with our incumbent vendor with getting the localized content back from them. We had to do a tremendous amount of work to get it publishable."
Documentation Manager

The partnership: How Rubric stepped in

It was clear that a new localization vendor was needed. After thorough research, including in online forums for Madcap Flare users, she found various recommendations for Rubric. Rubric's reputation for excellence and experience in managing Flare localization placed them on the shortlist.
From the very first interaction, Rubric displayed a clear ethos of partnership. Unlike the previous vendor and others on the shortlist, Rubric was committed to understanding the company’s unique needs and addressing them proactively.
"Right from the beginning, Rubric set up a weekly meeting with us. We were impressed from the very beginning by Rebecca [Metcalf, Rubric's Global Content Analyst]. Rubric was just so different from the other vendors we talked to. They offered us suggestions from the get-go."
Documentation Manager

The pilot project: A chance to see immediate results

Impressed by Rubric, the documentation manager initiated a pilot project. She split the work into sub-projects — Rubric would translate into 3 languages, the incumbent vendor into 5 languages, and another shortlisted company into 2 languages. This would allow her to compare the quality and process of all three vendors.
Rubric's MadCap Flare expertise and proactive approach immediately set them apart from the rest. When there were delays and procurement issues with the other shortlisted vendor, she confidently reallocated their work to Rubric.
This pilot project was not only a test run for Rubric, it was the first step towards a trusted collaboration to improve and scale localization efforts. At the end of the pilot project the results were in: The translations from Rubric were of a higher quality than the incumbent vendor and the effort required by the internal documentation team was significantly less.

The results: 99% reduction in file pre- and post-processing time

A key differentiator of Rubric's approach was the immediate improvements they made to the localization process.
The results of the changes came impressively quickly and harnessed Rubric's expertise with Madcap Flare and Lingo.
One significant improvement was the staggering reduction in the time and effort the documentation team spent on processing the Flare and Lingo content before and after translation — a reduction of 99%.

"Prior to changing to Rubric, I would spend a week and a half pre-processing files for translation in Lingo. With Rubric, that reduced to 10 minutes, as they process the Flare file directly. When we got the translations back from the vendor, it would take anywhere from 1 to 3 weeks per language to post-process and publish. With Rubric that reduced to a few hours."

Another improvement was the reduction in release time. The release of the pilot project content took place 6 weeks earlier than expected under the incumbent vendor.

The transformation: A leap forward in quality and delivery time

Rubric's holistic approach to localization improvement emphasized the importance of viewing translation not as an isolated activity, but as a critical part of a company’s global communication.
Through long-term partnership, Rubric aim to continually optimize our clients' creation and localization of global content, resulting in an excellent end-user experience for our clients’ customers and exceptional ROI for our clients.
Unlike with the incumbent vendor, the documentation manager found working with Rubric to be easy and rewarding. Rubric laid the groundwork for future collaboration and process improvements in a way that she hadn't seen before:
"We were previously doing the UI translations as completely separate processes, with no shared translation memory. It was not uncommon for the same word to be translated in three separate ways on the same page in the help file, then translated in a completely different way in the software UI.
Rubric taught us how important it is to standardize terminology. They helped us implement an automated way to ensure the consistency between the UI and the online help. It's something we hadn't previously thought about but it was a great idea."
The team at Rubric have provided ongoing recommendations and suggestions for localization improvements, such as reducing translation costs by authoring content more consistently and concisely, and identifying and excluding non-translatable content from the translation process.
This approach, focused on partnership and collaboration, built trust and understanding between Rubric and our client. It has paved the way to creating a scalable localization process that enables the client to expand their global reach in future.
"On a personal level, I think the people at Rubric are lovely. I enjoyed every minute working with them. Their skill and knowledge — and their willingness to share it — are so impressive. It's hard to find this in today's business world. I have recommended them multiple times through user groups. Rubric should be on anyone's vendor shortlist."
Documentation Manager

The Rubric Difference: Process, proactive, and partnership

· Process: Rubric focused on streamlining and optimizing the company's localization process. The results of this were immediately evident in the 99% reduction in pre- and post-processing time.
· Proactive: Rubric was committed to constant innovation and improvement from the very beginning. This collaborative partnership has allowed Rubric to make suggestions that can be used to improve the localization process long into the future.
· Partnership: Rubric's approach showed the commitment to long-term partnership. Even before taking part in a pilot project, the team at Rubric suggested changes and improvements to reduce wasted effort, lower localization cost and improve translation quality.

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