With so many consumers relying on interpretation just to enjoy seamless, fruitful interactions with your company, you really need to strike that value chord when it comes to language services.
And, from the vaults of “Business 101,” that means cutting costs without compromising quality. It’s simple, really... if you do it right.
So let’s do it right. Here are five simple strategies to streamline those language services costs while amping up the excellence (and earnings) of your services.
1) Review your language services agreement.
When looking to cut costs on services, the best (and most logical) place to begin is the most updated agreement between you and your provider.
Simple economics: Technology and competition make things more affordable. It costs less to do more (technology) and higher supply means lower prices (competition).
Adaptive prices: This means that the per-minute and per-project costs of services are much lower today than they were even three years ago. And this is especially true for telephone interpreting services.
So let’s shake the cobwebs off of that contract. Review your language services agreement regularly and do some cost comparisons to avoid paying up to 3.5 times the current market rate.
2) ...But, keep the spotlight on quality.
Cutting costs on services without maintaining (or improving) quality is like training for a marathon and forgetting your shoes. Not smart… nor fun.
Let’s say you work with a language services company that hires inexperienced telephone interpreters. The price might be great! But the interpretation quality? Not so much.
Frustrating experiences: Not only will you be dishing out a healthy serving of poor customer experience for your customers – eroding their respect for and loyalty to your brand – but those subpar services are also going to lengthen and increase calls.
Limited specialization: Inexperienced interpreters are unlikely to understand terminology specific to your industry. Once again, this lands you with longer call times and more calls per customer.
Short story even shorter: Skimping on quality is going to bite you in the long run. (Every. Single. Time.)
3) Bundle your services.
When your interpreting and translation needs span a range of services, you definitely want to consider bundling your services.
One platform: Look for a provider that offers a myriad of services* under a single platform or dashboard. This means you won’t have to keep constant tabs on multiple providers and projects. Look at all the time (and human resources costs) you’ve reclaimed!
Better rate: You’ll also be able to negotiate a more attractive rate by bundling services.
Between the time you save and the rates you land, you’re making serious strides toward cutting those language services costs.
Using in-house resources whenever possible helps you reduce your monthly language services bill.
Flexible technology: Partner with a tech-enabled provider that routes calls to your in-house language agents before dialing out to an interpreter.
In-language training: Quality language support requires familiarity with industry terminology, as well as an understanding of professional standards. So while being bilingual is necessary, it is not sufficient. Work with a provider that offers testing and certification programs for bilingual individuals to become certified in-language agents.
With appropriate technology and training, you increase the utilization rate of your internal resources and – you guessed it! – cut costs.
5) Let data do the work.
Language services costs aren’t limited to that monthly provider bill, but also include time spent tracking these services and assigning interpreting costs to appropriate customers, accounts and departments.
Live data: To save accounting time and reduce internal HR costs, partner with a provider that offers real-time data on your interpreting services.
Actionable data: Numbers mean nothing without a story behind them. The provider’s data analysis tools should make meaningful bridges between the numbers and specific customers, accounts and departments.
Let the data do the work that normally gets done on your teams’ time and your company’s dime.
There we have it. Five simple steps to cutting language service costs without undermining quality. Cheers to the best solutions being the simplest.