This article is in partnership with Day Translations, which launched The Linguist Magazine in 2024. The commentary provided in this post is based on the featured interview with Day Translations’ Founder, Sean Hopwood.
The Early Days of Day Translations and the Focus on Team Building
In the interview for The Linguist Magazine, Day Translations Founder and President Sean Hopwood described how shared experiences and memories with people from different backgrounds who spoke different languages shaped how he wanted to build and grow his own company. Sean gave priority to emotional intelligence, trust and communication as a way to give employees autonomy and feel they were really contributing to a cooperative spirit within the organisation.
Using Technology to Support Translators
There’s a lot of talking about the risk that technology is taking away people’s jobs and, unfortunately, this is sometimes the case for translations when there is no consideration for the quality of translated text. However, accurate translations still require human intervention. We have now come to a hybrid model where human and machine translations are used in conjunction to produce translated content. The emphasis here is on productivity tools that assist professional translations in delivering a higher word count in a shorter time frame but without compromising on quality. There is no replacing human translation when it comes to convey the correct cultural nuances and context, as you need someone to judge when and how to apply a specific word or expression within a piece of text, sound or video that is being translated.
In the interview Sean Hopwood mentioned SmartCAT and Slack as two tools that he and his team rely on regularly to improve delivery times to clients and to make Day Translations’ services more competitive and more affordable to clients. For example, he described how SmartCAT allows translations to be stored in the cloud, which minimises the risk of lost data in situ. Then, he explained how Slack has proved to be a superior communication tool compared to Skype for keeping track of projects internally.
These technologies, alongside having Zoom meetings, helped Day Translations not only stay afloat during the 2020 pandemic, but they also prevented any layoffs in the organisation, which continued to stay productive beyond lockdowns.
Remote Working at Day Translations
Day Translations have several offices around the world as well as many international clients who rely on translation services. Having multiple offices in different countries also means that Day Translations can cover many time zones, therefore being agile and responsive to the needs of international clients.
The key factors that have contributed to Day Translations’ success are:
- trusting employees to work from home independently
- using technology to assist the work of professional translators, not to replace them
- sharing a clear mission to making a positive change
- keeping up to date with the latest translation technologies and discussing developments with the team
- employing the best talent available
- providing employees with opportunities for growth and matching their individual ambitions (from earning goals to professional recognition) in line with the company’s objectives, which include promoting communication between cultures.