Do you want to translate your product manuals or operating instructions to make them accessible to international customers? Discover our tips on how to get a reliable and high-quality translation of your manuals and instructions for use, whatever your field of activity.
Translating an instruction manual: challenges and issues
Instruction manuals play a key role in ensuring user safety and optimising customer experience. Manuals enable the buyer to use and maintain the product properly, following the instructions.
Instructions for use come with all types of products such as medicines, instructions for electronic devices, car manuals, product sheets for e-commerce, instructions on food packaging, etc. They are highly technical documents, which use terminology specific to the sector of activity concerned.
Who can I use to translate an instruction manual?
To guarantee the quality of the translation of a manual or leaflet, it is essential to use a professional native speaker who specialises in the sector concerned (industry, food, pharmaceuticals, retail, mechanics, etc.), and who has a perfect command of technical terminology.
This will ensure that your translation is qualitative, reliable, and faithful to the original, but also that you are protected against any possible legal consequences. A "bad translation", affects the clarity of the instructions and can jeopardise the safety of the user. The professional translator will also be able to translate the instructions following the standards and cultural nuances in the destination country.
Use Alphatrad to translate a manual or instructions
Our translation agency Alphatrad offers translation services for instruction manuals in over a hundred languages, from the most common (English, Spanish, French, German, Portuguese, etc.), to the rarest (Albanian, Bosnian, Estonian, Farsi, Hebrew, Vietnamese, etc.).
We assign you a professional, experienced translator who specialises in your field. Thanks to the professionalism, expertise, and thoroughness of these translation professionals, you will receive a smooth, accurate translation, free of ambiguity and errors, which will preserve your company's reputation.
Examples of technical documents that can be translated
Below are examples of technical documents that can, and should, be translated correctly:
- medical records
- manuals or technical instructions
- safety data sheets
- product sheets
- maintenance manuals
- repair manuals
- user manuals
We also recommend that a glossary be drawn up to maximise the quality of the final document and speed up the translation process. This document groups together the technical terms most often mentioned in the content, as well as information and terminology specific to the company or product described in the notice. Our translators will then integrate this glossary into a database (a translation memory —TM), which will facilitate future translations.
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FAQ about translating instruction manuals
To translate a leaflet into English, the safest way is to use a professional native English-speaking translator (translation agency, freelance translator, etc.). Make sure you choose a translator who is a native of the target country (United Kingdom, United States, Australia, etc.), to guarantee a consistent translation that considers the cultural and linguistic nuances of the intended audience.
The translation of an instruction manual into French requires, whatever the source language is, the expertise of an experienced professional translator who specialises in the sector concerned (medical, IT, industrial, etc.). Free automatic translation tools (such as Google Translate) will not give you a reliable and error-free translation.
The cost of translating a manual varies according to the technical nature of the document, the sector of activity concerned, the number of words, the format, any graphic data to be translated (visuals, diagrams, etc.), and the language pairing, etc. The costs will also vary according to the offers on the market. Request a free online quote to find out about our rates.
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