CAT tools

Translation Industry

CAT tools: ensure consistency and save money

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Computer-aided translation (CAT) tools are an industry standard and advancements in translation technology offer numerous advantages to translators and clients alike. Unfortunately, companies who choose not to let their translation partners use these tools or aren’t aware of the option can end up missing out on a higher level of consistency and cost savings. Read on to learn about how CAT tools could benefit your next translation project.


Why do some clients opt out of using CAT tools for their translation projects?


Some clients shy away from CAT tools as a translation option because they simply don’t know enough about them. There is also a common misconception that computer-aided translation is a form of machine translation similar to Google Translate, and this puts off companies seeking reliable translation services. Unlike Google Translate, however, every word in a translation done in a CAT tool is translated by a human translator in context. CAT tools identify repetitions and patterns within a given translation project by comparing it with previously translated content which the translator can reference to ensure consistency in a document, series of documents or even across entire product or brand content!


How do CAT tools work?

Translation memories (TM) are client-specific databases that store each sentence once a translator has translated it, saving them for reference in any future projects. If there are any similar or repeated segments in the current project or in the TM, these will be suggested to the translator as they’re translating so they can adapt the translation accordingly and maintain a high level of consistency. This saves time, allowing us to offer discounts and faster turnarounds, which can be especially valuable in time-sensitive projects.


How does AST pass this saving onto its clients?


We will analyse your project for you and offer a discount depending on how many matches there are in your text or texts. The more similar the match, the less a translator will have to translate/adapt and the more discount we can offer. Many corporate texts, such as terms and conditions and product descriptions/specifications, are updated regularly. Since CAT tools store previous translations, when it comes to updating translated texts, we can promise you’ll never be charged the full price twice for content that has already been translated.


What if my company has never had anything translated in a CAT tool before and therefore doesn’t have a TM?


That’s not a problem. Our project managers will be happy to create one for you! We can set up a new TM now which can be used not only for the current assignment, but any future translations as well. Alternatively, we can create a more extensive TM from previously translated documents. We’ll continue to manage your TM for you to ensure that it’s up-to-date and ready to use for your next project.


Terminology management


In addition to TMs, we also develop termbases (TB) for our clients. These are multilingual glossaries containing your business’ individual terms and phrases. The CAT software uses these TBs to suggest client and specialist-approved terminology to the translator. This allows for greater consistency and accuracy in technical and corporate texts, which is key for reinforcing your brand’s image.


Getting started


If you have a translation project in the pipeline and would like to discover how CAT technology could benefit you and help save costs, our Project Management team would be happy to advise you. You can contact them here.


Although we have extensive experience in a variety of CAT tools, AST are specialists in industry-leading translation software SDL Trados Studio 2017. If your company has had experience with different software, we would be glad to discuss other options. You can find further information on our translation memory and term management services here.


If you have a translation project that you’d like to discuss with us, contact one of our project managers to see how we could help or request a free quotation

Get in touch

If you have a translation project you’d like to discuss with one of our project managers contact us today

+44(0)115 970 5633