A good translator is not just someone who knows two languages quite well but is someone who has a variety of other skills, too. If you just have an interest in languages and seem to be able to grasp the basics in a short time, that’s a good characteristic of a translator, so perhaps it’s a job you should choose.
Globalisation has created a spike in the demand for trained and competent translators, especially in certain language pairs, that up to now have been important. Now, new markets are starting to emerge which are different from the standard, older markets that have always been important.
What Skills are Needed to Create a Quality Translation?
To begin with, one characteristic of a translator is fluency in no less than two languages. One of these 2 languages should be the translator’s native language. However, being fluent is just one aspect, as a deep knowledge of the 2 languages goes a bit further than just fluency. It involves knowing all the idiosyncrasies of the languages so comprehensive understanding of concepts illustrated in the language takes place.
The second thing is that it’s quite normal for a translator to specialise in a specific translation field, such as legal translations or medical translations. You need to have an understanding of the field you are working in, as well as having the translation skills. If you are required to translate a document to meet a certain targeted audience, you need to get the style of the translation right and use terms that the audience will clearly understand. For example, translating a medical document for a medical professional requires a different terminology than translating for a patient. Translating legal documents for a lawyer is different than for a lawyer’s client.
You need skills in using computer software as this speeds up the translation process and if you are working through a translation services business it will expect a certain amount of turnout every day. These days, computer literacy is an important skill and will help you get the quality of translation you are expected to turnout for a client.