When it comes to translating your documentation, proofreading and editing are two important stages of the process following the translation itself. The two however are commonly confused or referred to interchangeably.
Note that these are two distinct practices that play different roles in the translation process and each one requires different skill-sets. Both revise content to ensure the correct standard of quality is achieved and are the last two processes involved in the translation flow before the content is sent to the customer.
Proofreading corrects typos and punctuation, fixes grammatical errors and revises any other linguistic issues in your text.
Editing is a more complex analysis of the full text to assure that the style, tone and other qualities set out by the customer in the original text are passed on in the translation in such a way that the reader will not have the slightest feeling that what is read is actually a translation from another language.
The two practices are often grouped together in the same review process, but editing can be removed from the flow, depending on scope and audience. For example, if the scope is not linked to sales, marketing activities and is used only as internal information (a new HR policy, new compliancy regulations) editing can be removed. It is advisable however to consult with your translation provider prior to making this decision. Some material, even if only for internal reference may require editing for assuring that precise details have been accordingly translated. We are referring here to those types of documents in which one wrong word could change/impact everything. (i.e. Medical procedures / legal contracts).
Proofreading on the other hand is a step that is strongly recommended never to be skipped.
Even if for internal use, a message containing grammar or punctuation mistakes could send the wrong message to your employees.
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