SME is the abbreviation for Subject Matter Translation that is a specialized translation that is industry specific. In our view, translation of technical documents is project and subject-based and needs a specific field of expertise pertaining to the project at hand, thus it require an SME translator.
The translation of technical documents is not as easy at it seems
When should you hire an SME translator for your technical translation?
Being an expert translator and an expert in the subject that is being translated are two different matters entirely. You may have great knowledge of the translation techniques but if you do not have the knowledge in the subject in whom translation is being done, there is no point in trying to attempt the translation.
An SME translator is preferred when it comes to translation of technical documents because he develops the document in the target language while keeping the original subject matter in mind. An engineer will translate the document more accurately as he can redraw drawings and explain concepts fluidly. This makes his expertise the key to a successful and worthy technical translation.
What is SME translation?
SME translation is basically being done by a team of linguists that are also specialized in a specific field such as accounting, medical, engineering or oil & gas. The SME translation team will make sure that the translation is well done and is well received by the target audience.
Let us suppose you are translating a manual of how to use a medical device for a heart patient. Now even if you are a great translator, if you have never worked in the medical manufacturing industry; it will be hard for you to find the right translation for terminologies or how to get the details on various principles that are at work in the machinery. You will probably fail in translating such a manual, or do a bad job at it.
The SME translator would have done a way better job. The SME translator has deep knowledge in his field of expertise and is able to correctly convey the meaning of the text, including the correct terminology.
What happens when poor technical translations are being used?
If you cannot find an SME translator for your document then the end result of your translation will lack in focus and quality of content and the work will fall short. You will miss out on important translations and accuracy of the translation cannot be guaranteed, therefore the document cannot be completely trusted to show a complete picture of the device.
This can lead to various issues such as:
- Industrial accidents can occur because of mishandling of equipment and inaccurate operation.
- Marketing is ineffective or even offensive.
- Lack of proper care for patients.
- This can also compromise court cases and fail at delivering the right results.
There are many reasons to hire an SME translator when it comes to translation of technical documents and none of the reasons are to be treated lightly. It is of great significance that technical material is properly translated and explained.