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Who is the end user?

All business documentation is directed at one or more groups of stakeholders. Understanding who the target audience is will help you shape the type of translation required. If you are producing a marketing campaign, for example, you will need a different kind of translation than you would if you were merely translating a document for internal informational purposes.

The simple matrix below helps classify documents by business needs. It allows you to quickly identify what the real priority is for each project. Corporate translations can be classified in terms of use, purpose and format

  • Use: EXTERNAL or INTERNAL
  • Purpose: ACCURACY or MOTIVATION
  • Format: PUBLICATION or INFORMATION ONLY
EXTERNALINTERNAL
INSPIREBrochures, websites, communications, advertising…Newsletters, intranets, motivational materials…
BE ACCURATECatalogues, datasheets, installation manuals, training materials…Business reports, legal and financial documents, administration, IT, quality…

Thinking about the use, purpose and format of documents will help you determine if they need to be highly polished — all marketing collateral, for instance — or not (HR documentation for internal use, for example).

A document for internal use which aims to motivate and inform will obviously cost less than a document for external use which
needs to be 100% accurate and will end up being published.

Keep in mind that translations need to be equivalent to the original and appropriate for a given use.

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