Canada is a multilingual country. While the vast majority of Canadians speak English or French, residents also speak a variety of other languages, including Chinese, Punjabi, Spanish, and countless others. While it may not be possible to cater your business to every language out there, it’s very important to communicate in both English and French, at a minimum. In fact, the law requires it. Hiring a translator may be the next logical step to help your business serve customers and clients regardless of which official language they speak.
Stay Compliant With Canadian Rules and Regulations
Canada’s Official Languages Act states that both English and French are considered the official languages of Canada. Although the law doesn’t require citizens to speak both languages, it does require businesses to be able to communicate with customers, clients, and employees in their preferred official language. Naturally, hiring a translator for your business makes sense if you’re not able to hire bilingual employees, or at least make sure there is always at least one English- and one French-speaking employee available at all times. After all, scheduling conflicts happen, and having a translator on your team or on call ensures that you never have to turn a potential client or customer away because you can’t communicate with them.
Reach the Growing Immigrant Population
Canada’s immigration policy states that the country plans to bring 310,000 immigrants to Canada in 2018, and those numbers are set to increase every year until 2020. As the Canadian population becomes more diverse, there will be more languages in the melting pot. When it comes to running a business, you want to cast as wide a net as possible, and that means being able to communicate with immigrants who may not be comfortable with English or French yet. You may even be able to corner the immigrant market if you have a translator onsite, as your competition may not have that option available. Additionally, a translator can help you acquire international clients that you may not be able to reach otherwise.
Improve Content Quality
A translator makes it possible to create online or printed content that is fluent, is legible, and captures subtle cultural details. Many companies rely on automatic online translation services that leave the content filled with grammatical and spelling errors. A human translator can pick up on the nuances that make content easy and enjoyable to read in a person’s native language. From employee training materials to social media ads, it’s critical that your company get its message across clearly and professionally.
Consistency is also vital to the success and longevity of any company. Keeping your content consistent in just one language can be challenging enough, let alone two or more. A translator ensures that your company and its message are always portrayed as originally intended.
Boost Your Company’s Image
Hiring a translator can also be a great public relations strategy. It gives you the opportunity to reach out to the world and say that people of all walks of life are welcome at your business. Because translators aren’t always available, this really sets you apart from other companies and shows that you go that extra mile to keep customers happy. Even if someone only speaks English or French as their native language, just the fact that you go above and beyond says a lot about your business as a whole. Additionally, if you have to turn someone away because you can’t understand them, they’re going to be justifiably upset. Naturally, that type of negative experience may lead to bad reviews and damage to your company’s reputation.
How to Hire a Translator
When it comes to translation in business, the ideal approach varies depending on the specific requirements of your industry. For example, a law firm would need to hire someone who has a general understanding of how legal processes work to explain documents and procedures effectively. On a similar page, a medical translator needs to be confident in medical terminology and concepts. Often, it’s not enough to simply translate words from one language to another. While that type of basic translation may be suitable for a retail store, certain industries and complex subjects require specialized translators. If your company needs to communicate with a diverse customer base on a regular basis, it may make the most sense to hire a full-time specialized translator.
While you could seek out a translator on your own, many companies find it’s easier to outsource translators through an agency. Going through a translation agency ensures you get someone with the knowledge, experience, and training necessary to meet your company’s specific requirements. Seeking a translator through an agency can also be helpful when you just need someone on a case-by-case basis. Agencies often offer packages that are cheaper than seeking out and hiring translators on your own. At the same time, it never hurts to look into hiring an independent freelancer, as you never know who might be out there looking for opportunities in your company’s field.
As Canada becomes increasingly diverse, now is the perfect time to put your business at the forefront of better communication. Lead the way in your company’s industry by adding a translator to your staff. Gain the edge over your competition, and make sure you never miss a business opportunity.