Alter Solutions, a prestigious client of Linguaemundi, presented feedback regarding the quality of translation services rendered by our team. The issue centered on some documents translated from Portuguese to Polish which the client's native Polish colleagues reviewed and adjusted linguistically. Feedback indicated instances of “orthographic and punctuation errors making the documents hard to read”. The incident triggered a profound reflection on our workflows, engagement models, and customer relationship management strategy.
Issue Analysis and Addressing the Problem

An in-depth Root Cause Analysis (RCA) was conducted to identify the problem's primary sources. We leveraged multiple problem-solving methodologies like brainstorming, and particularly fishbone analysis. Through this investigation, we identified two critical root causes:
1. Instructions for the task were not adequately shared with the team by the Project Manager.
2. The choice of service for the translation, Machine Translation Post-Editing (MTPE) followed by a human revision, was made to reduce costs. However, this option tends to produce translations less appealing and more literal than desired.
Linguaemundi, in adherence to its traditions of transparency and continuous improvement, took swift corrective measures.
Immediate Correction
Our team promptly undertook a careful review of the highlighted instances and provided comprehensive comments. Where the suggested corrections were not accurate, we explained why; for the rest, we agreed to the proposed changes for better readability or more precise translation. We shared the reviewed and commented document with the client for total transparency.
Long-Term Corrective Actions
We implemented three crucial corrective actions to avoid recurrence:
1. We reinforced through training and our daily meetings the mandatory sharing of work instructions by the Project Manager.
2. We created a new specific budget template for MTPE service where we explicitly explain the advantages and potential disadvantages.
3. We trained the Project Management team to recommend the most suitable service and take a consultative approach when offering multiple quotation options to clients with the clients’ interest always in mind.
Through this proactive engagement and prompt responsiveness to the feedback, we demonstrated our commitment to our partnership with Alter Solutions and our determination to maintain the highest service quality.
Our relationship with Alter Solutions emerged stronger from this incident. We did not just 'fix' a problem; we transformed a complaint into an opportunity to improve our processes, communicate more effectively, and deepen our client relationship. The client appreciated our in-depth investigation, our transparency, and our commitment to continuous improvement.
The incident served as a reminder of the importance of active client engagement and maintaining a strong feedback loop. It reiterated that there's always room for learning and improvement, even in the face of setbacks.
It is our belief that by cultivating a culture of constant learning and adapting, we can continue to provide the highest quality service to our clients and foster long-lasting partnerships.
Lessons Learned
1. Active Consultation with Clients: Understanding the specific needs and expectations of our clients is paramount. It is crucial to provide active consultation when proposing services, especially when cost-effectiveness might compromise quality to some extent.
2. Transparent and Clear Communication: All project stakeholders must have access to detailed and clear instructions. Adequate training and stringent adherence to company processes is necessary to prevent any misunderstandings or lapses.
3. Responsiveness to Client Feedback: Client feedback, be it positive or negative, is invaluable. By responding promptly and effectively, we can turn potential crises into opportunities for improvement and strengthening client relationships.
Our engagement with Alter Solutions is a testimony to Linguaemundi's dedication to customer satisfaction, transparent communication, and continuous improvement. As we move forward, we aim to apply the insights gained from this case to our interactions with all our clients.