Challenges in Outsourcing Localization Projects

Challenges in Outsourcing Localization Projects – How to Choose the Best Service Provider?

Localization is a prudent, critical, and visionary business decision. It enables you to explore newer markets, opportunities and helps you gain ground in the native market, amidst dense competition.

But, although sustainably advantageous, localization is an intricate task. It involves an extensive set of factors to consider, right from understanding the culture, deciphering consumer expectations, translating the website, business documents, and localizing the products, and services.

The complexities involved in localization point towards hiring a localization service provider. They indicate partnering with a localization company that helps you localize your brand and transform it into something that the targeted market reckons with.

But then, outsourcing localization projects often poses a lot of challenges, and when you don’t deal with them properly, they prove detrimental enough to let your plans go awry.

So, at the outset, this blog highlights some of the localization outsourcing challenges. Nevertheless, we will not talk about problems alone. Reading the blog further will also help you choose the best localization service provider for your business.

5 Challenges in Outsourcing Localization Projects

Often, companies choose freelancing translators or multiple localization vendors, over hiring a single established localization service provider. They consider the first one cost-effective and the other beneficial in terms of the local language, market, and consumer expertise.

But such an approach proves short-sighted, owing to the numerous factors that localization entails. The criticality of localization demands a global localization service provider with a worldwide reach, understanding, and experience of working with various industries. Choosing a reputed service provider helps you overcome the following challenges of outsourcing localization projects.

1. Global Availability

A lot of localization firms out there fall short of capabilities, and bandwidth when it comes to handling global projects. They either do not have the necessary resources capable of managing global projects or do not understand multiple markets.

In such a situation, you don’t have an option but to outsource it to multiple vendors across different regions. That proves time-consuming and expensive. Besides, you may also lose a lot of on the quality front, as the approach and expertise levels are not the same across every vendor. Further, you have to manage a multiple vendor setup, which again is a hassle in itself.

2.Inconsistent Product Quality

Having to deal with inconsistent product quality is another challenge with outsourcing localization projects. For instance, on the one hand, you enjoy excellent Malaysian translation on your website; on the other, the quality of Thai website translations isn’t at par. Sometimes the translation isn’t as accurate, and at times, an inappropriate and misaligned website layout ruins the show!

A lot of companies face this problem, as such inconsistencies result in a higher bounce rate, etc. and therefore loss of business. Whatever the reason, inconsistent quality does not work in a competitive business environment, where competitors win over your prospect in no time!

3. Unpunctuality

Punctuality is devoid of expertise, and experience. It is an extraordinary intrinsic value, and hence a critical asset for every organization. Several companies miss out on deadlines, and also lose opportunities, only because the outsourced service provider does not deliver the product on time.

At times, the translations happen on time, but both parties lose a lot of time checking and correcting errors. In such a situation, the commitment is as good as unfulfilled.

Considering the local market competition and consumer psychology, companies must ensure that they get the deliveries on time, or else, they miss the whole point of outsourcing.

4. Delayed Communication, and Unresponsive Project Resources

The localization service market as well has become very competitive. Amidst such a situation, localization service providers take up as many projects as they can to sustain the competition.

Of course, there’s no harm in taking up projects if you get them, but then not at the cost of the business itself. Work overload and the corresponding dearth of resources results in delayed communication, complaining customers, the project resources going offline, avoiding calls, or leaving emails unread.

While a one-off instance isn’t as much of a concern, you cannot let it happen often, and each time. You must check if the provider assigns a responsible project manager who communicates on time, responds when you need, and keeps routine concerns at bay.

5. Restricted Localization Expertise

While some localize websites, some specialize in localizing offline documents such as business records, financial statements, marketing collaterals, brochures, etc. Besides, many providers specialize in localizing for a particular type of business, for instance, eLearning. Again, restricted linguistic expertise is another concern while outsourcing localization projects.

Amidst all these challenges, choosing a company with proven proficiency in translating online as well as offline documents, diverse industrial experience, and linguistic expertise at multiple languages proves an ideal choice. Such a company also comes in as a sustainable localization partner, as when it comes to venturing into new markets, and exploring new territories, you have someone bankable.

5 Tips to choose the Best Localization Service, Partner

Now that we’ve seen the problems, let us proceed to look at the solution as well. Despite the challenges, choosing a localization service company isn’t as challenging as it appears. Making the right choice is about asking the right questions in time and vetting the vendor on a few critical parameters.

So, if you are eyeing global markets, and looking forward to partnering with a comprehensive localization service provider, these tips can help you make an informed choice.

1. An Understanding of the Difference Between Translation and Localization

While translation is translating text from one language to another, localization is an advanced task that involves aligning the translation to the needs, culture, and psychology of the target audience.

So, translation is a subset of localization, and it isn’t localization itself. It is something that the localization service provider must fundamentally understand and have the capabilities to localize the translation to ensure your brand connects with the native audience, and it talks business.

So, before you sign the papers, and hire the vendor, ensure that the service provider has a comprehensive understanding of the difference between these two terms. Besides, the vendor must have the linguistic, technical, and strategic understanding of everything associated with localizing your brand to the extent and connecting it with the local consumer-base.

2. Localization Expertise, Global Perspective, and Understanding

Check the company’s localization expertise, scope, and experience at localizing a variety of documents. Ideally, the company must possess the capability, and the technological access to localize different types of offline and online documents. It includes websites, applications, software products, along with brochures, social media content, training manuals, statements, agreements, contracts, etc.

Besides, also see if the localization agency has a global perspective and understanding of business, or does it confine its scope to undertake only domestic projects. Cognizance of various native markets, along with the approach, prove significant and decisive factors.

Partnering with a localization firm that enables your brand to look beyond the local market through localization must form your choice. The local market and business understanding of such a company give you an edge over your competitors and puts you in a better position to outperform them.

3. The Quality Control Measures, and Procedures of the Localization Service Provider

Localization does not yield the desired results if it is flawed. Minor inaccuracies may cost you your business, and which is where the quality control measures and procedures of the localization service provider play a significant role.

So, before you make your choice, ensure that you evaluate the quality control mechanism to avoid letting your brand suffer on account of even the most trivial mistake!

Assessing the quality control process of the provider involves understanding the levels of quality checks, the project verticals (technical, linguistic, etc.), and on what all parameters will the team check the localized content, matters a lot while delivering the highest levels of accuracies.

Forgetting to check the quality control practices indicates risking your brand, and in a way, letting your competitors win the race. You don’t want to commit such a mistake, do you?

4. The Company’s Credibility on the Market, and the Diversity of Projects Handled in the Past

Why will someone talk about failures and dissatisfied customers? As a company looking forward to global expansion, it is your responsibility to check the provider’s credibility.

So, do not entirely rely on online reviews. What matters is the real-time feedback that you take from the company’s previous and existing customers, and know what they have to say. Also, check how successful the company’s past projects have been, and also know the reasons for its failure, if any.

Besides, assessing the diversity of the projects that the company has handled, also helps you determine whether you can give your project to the localization company or not.

All these factors will help you filter your list and only discuss your needs with companies that can work on your project and deliver tangible results in the long run.

5. Project Management Expertise, and Availability and Expertise of Project Resources

At times, when the vendors aren’t as serious about the project, everything initially seems quick and exciting. But, over a while, the resources turn unresponsive, and the work quality deteriorates. Again, this doesn’t necessarily happen in every provider’s case, and in fact, it should not. But then, you must assess the company’s project management expertise to ensure it does not happen with your project.

Here, the key is to serve you as a sustainable localization partner that understands your business and needs, or at least until the project’s completion. Besides, seek confirmation on the availability of resources, the contingency plan, etc. to keep the project engine running.

Alongside this, talk to the project management team. If your discussions reach a particular stage, make sure you interact with the project manager, and the execution team to establish first-hand mutual understanding. It proves healthy from the viewpoint of assuring the expected levels of quality and an assurance on the project completion front as well.

Want to go Global? Partner with Filose!

Filose is one of the leading localization and translation companies across the globe. The company’s extensive experience, unmatched localization expertise, high success rate, and capability, coupled with a proven track record of working with diverse industries, speak about its credibility and reputation.

Filose employs some of the best, sensible, and the most dedicated localization resources to ensure prompt responses, timely completion of the project, and accuracy throughout. The company works with a result-oriented approach, which is why many globally reputed companies trust Filose as their worldwide localization partner.

If you want to go global, and wish to leverage the benefits of a sustainable localization strategy to the advantage of your business, contact to Filose’s experts on +91-20-49007800 or email to

Ref. No – FLB06221008

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