2 Replies
Karl Muller

In a previous job, I used translation service companies to translate course content from English to Spanish.  We experienced two problems:

The same course was delivered to learners in multiple South American Spanish speaking countries. The feedback that we received was that regional differences meant that some words did not always work perfectly in every country. We could not make a version for each country. Not a huge problem but something to be aware of. 

A much bigger problem was that the translation companies struggled with technical terms that were specific to the industry and also specific to the company products. Problems occurred despite the fact that we had put together a very comprehensive English/Spanish lexicon for technical terms.

So when we got the first draft from the translation company, we had to send the copy out for review by Spanish speaking employees. There was so much back and forth between the translation company and our own internal Spanish speakers, that we eventually stopped  using translation companies altogether and used two Spanish speaking employees that had proven their abilities.

On other less technical projects using professional translation service companies actually worked very well.

Your mileage using translation service companies may vary.