Localization Questions

Subject: Localization Questions
From: Dick Gaskill <dickg -at- AG3D -dot- COM>
Date: Mon, 23 Mar 1998 18:45:39 -0800

Apologies to those who don't have any interest in this, please just
delete it.

I'd intended not to clutter up the list with this set of questions, but
I've received no less than 20 requests for it and they just keep coming.
I'm hoping this message might provide the information to those who are
interested without having to send it umpteen times.

For those who either localize their documentation or may do it someday,
this list of questions to screen localization vendors might be helpful.
Please note that this list is not all-inclusive. Not all questions may
be relevant to the work you are doing and there may be other relevant
questions to ask, again, depending upon the work to be done.


20 questions to ask localization vendors.

1. Provide company data, officers, etc.
2. When was the company founded?
3. What are current revenues?
4. How many on staff? project managers, translators, DTP, etc.
5. What is the location of their main offices)?
6. What are the locations of their partner offices?
7. What is the time lag for communications?
8. Will they work directly with our in-country offices for
9. What methods do they use for file transfer? ftp, email, etc.
10. What services do they provide? translate, localize consult,
edit, format , publish, etc.
11. Which languages are available and what is the cost per word for
manuals, help, and software in each language?
12. How many years experience in languages of interest?
13. What software tools do they have experience in? Include: machine
translation, artwork, DTP,
14. What file formats can they accept and deliver?
15. What are their update procedures? Glossaries, databases, etc.?
16. Are they ISO9000 certified?
17. Do they provide training** for localiztion if needed? At whose cost?
18. Where are the translators located?
19. Do the translators they use have technical experience in products
similar to ours?
20. Do the translators already know ,or are they able to quickly learn
enough about the technology of our products so that they can localize
the docs in a way that our customers can understand and use them.

**(so that you know how to set up your documents and other things that
will make the work easier and faster for both you and the vendor, and be
less expensive for your company).

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