Liesbeth Matthieu of NetApp and Emma Young of Acclaro presented at Localization World Santa Clara on October 10, 2011, offering more specifics around the in-country linguistic review structure highlighted in our blog post “NetApp Achieves Gobal SimShip with High-Quality In-Country Review.” The following are five tips from their presentation that will help your business create an effective in-country review program:
1. Look at your current localization management model. Are you launching on time, on budget and with the highest quality in your target markets? Where along the ways are translations getting “stuck”? For many companies, the in-country review process is the culprit. At NetApp, the team determined that this was indeed the case, preventing them from simshipping marketing materials at launch. This, in turn, was mainly due to the fact that in-country reviewers (the local marketing and sales staff) couldn’t keep up with the time-consuming demands of linguistic review.
2. Formulate a few scenarios for solving the bottleneck of in-country review. Discuss your ideas with your internal team, your reviewers (if appropriate), and with your localization agency, who can help with suggesting best practices. Then formulate your ideal scenario and get ready to present this to the C-suite. At NetApp, they determined that the best solution was to invest in a focused and dedicated team of in-country reviewers (no longer relying on busy marketing and engineering staff). Because quality was also of utmost importance, NetApp also wanted to have first-class language specialists and continual investment in the evolving role of these reviewers.
3. If you do choose to invest in quality, dedicated in-country reviewers as NetApp did (or any other scenario that includes an increase in budget), you’ll need to approach management with clear investment justifications. Liesbeth and Emma recommend that you do the following:
a. Demonstrate in-depth understanding of the problem: where and why are there delays, how does this affect the company, and how can it best be solved
b. Know the pain points: revenue loss, delays, quality issues, etc.
c. Convey experience and credibility: present a future history and get a sponsor
d. Choose the right timing: fit the new program with the company-wide globalization discussion
4. Hammer out all the details before you launch your new program. Have a clear understanding of what you need. For example, NetApp engaged Acclaro to source their in-country reviewers. This partnership required a detailed contract, an understanding of capacity, rules of engagement, and complete trust and dialogue between the two parties. Once this is done, you can launch smoothly and quickly without any surprises. Also, don’t forget to gather your metrics pre-launch (you should have these already handy from when you presented your new program to management) so that you can track your on-going performance post-launch.
5. Monitor, monitor, monitor! You’ll want to continually monitor how your program is working. Are you meeting your goals in terms of quality, ROI, hours spent on review, and hours given back to the field? Are you simshipping for the first time? Are you able to deal with the ebb and flow of projects? Have you transformed the localization process so that it’s now predictable and standardized? If you’re not reaching your goals and not receiving good feedback, re-evaluate what is not working and what further improvements you can make to your in-country review process. NetApp works closely with Acclaro to ensure that goals are met via weekly calls, quarterly business reviews, performance reviews, annual feedback from in-country teams, and time tracking and metric reporting.
Read up on more tips for managing in-country linguistic review.