The results weren’t exactly as expected.
“We learned the hard way that it just doesn’t work that way,” said John Blackmon, senior vice president of the software-development firm.
Simply knowing the languages isn’t enough, he explained. The translator also must intimately understand the nuances of translation, Blackmon said.
Trivantis, founded 13 years ago, is best known by its flagship product called Lectora. The eLearning product is one the company heralds as “the first, easy-to-use authoring software” that “made rapid eLearning a reality.” Essentially, the software is a tool that allows customers to create eLearning courses.
Corporations and organizations that focus on everything from retail to higher education, government and manufacturing use the company’s eLearning software. Its products serve more than 70 percent of Fortune 100 companies, most Fortune 500 firms and all branches of the U.S. military. Global 2000 corporations in more than 125 countries also use Trivantis’ eLearning software.
Trivantis has offices in Boca Raton, Fla.; Phoenix, Paris and London.
In 2008, the company started to expand into international markets. Likewise, the Lectora tool would need to be translated into the native languages of potential customers.
That’s when Trivantis began its search for a translation company via a call for contract bids.
“LinguaLinx’s bid came back very good,” Blackmon said.
LinguaLinx, based in Cohoes, N.Y., offers translation services, as well as interpretation, multilingual copywriting, transcription and multicultural consulting.
“The experience has been very good,” Blackmon said. “(LinguaLinx) is always extremely competitive. We never have had any problems working with them.”
Mostly, LinguaLinx translates documentation associated with Trivantis’ various eLearning tools and hosting platforms.
“You would be surprised at how much translation that requires,” Blackmon explained.
LinguaLinx, he added, is dependable and consistent.
“We’ve had repeatable scenarios where things get translated the same way each time,” he said.
Blackmon described Trivantis’ relationship with LinguaLinx as collaborative, citing a recent project where the company had to make changes to an eLearning tool.
“They worked with us,” he said. “It’s nice to work with someone that’s more your partner, not just your vendor.”
Thus far, LinguaLinx has translated Trivantis’ Lectora product into five languages.
“It has allowed us to confidently enter markets knowing that we can get the product localized in a reasonable timeframe to enable sales,” Blackmon explained.
As a software developer, translation is crucial, he added. Documentation linked to the Lectora eLearning product has to be spot on, he said. Using college students who are native speakers of a particular language, as Trivantis once tried, or free online tools such as Google Translate are like night and day when compared with a professional translation company, Blackmon said.
“There’s a huge difference. Google Translate is never an option for any software developer,” he noted. “We’ve been working with (LinguaLinx) a number of years for a number of releases. We’ve seen a number of companies come and go and they’re there and they will be there.”