The art of translation is very important across a plethora of professional fields and plays a key role in many business strategies. These range from translating pieces of fiction, right through to translating legal documents and can vary in scope and difficulty. Very often teams of translators will be needed, and they will be working to different pressures such as deadlines or the fear of legal action, these tensions will vary depending on the professional field.


The first field that is incredibly important is literature, many authors have international success due to the fact that their books are so expertly translated. Take Harry Potter for example, this series has been translated into more than seventy different translations, ranging from Welsh to Hawaiian, and has even been translated into the dead language’s Latin and Ancient Greek. The full list of the Harry Potter series translations is quite extensive. This series of books has been deemed as difficult to translate due to the amount of made up words, references to British culture, metaphors and allusions that were used by the author, J.K. Rowling. Because the books are so popular and beloved across the Globe it was very important for the translators to accurately convey everything as intended but make sure it resonated with the culture – they also had the tricky task of having to rush the translations as they were not made available to translate until the books were published in English first. The pressure was that high for publishers to get the translations done accurately and quickly that in Italy the fans bombarded the publisher with feathers (as an ode to the messenger owls in the series) to push them in publishing the translated edition quicker.

Marketing Collateral

Many companies that operate internationally will make the most out of their marketing collateral for cost efficiencies and will hire the services of a professional translator to translate the material into the required languages. This is especially common practice for companies’ websites, as people are aware that they cannot simply rely on tools such as Google Translate to accurately translate their content, instead the different translations will be inputted directly into the content management system for complete accuracy and control. For those companies operating internationally, the likelihood is that there will be a need for internal translations too, these might be in the form of company documents or translations in person during meetings.

Companies that sell consumer products internationally will be very familiar with the requirements of getting their product instructions and technical manuals translated. To save on cost, many companies will just produce once piece of material that includes every translation, giving the user the option to choose the translation they need. This work is very important, very often much more important than the aforementioned pieces of marketing collateral, as consumers will need to be able to successfully follow the translated instructions, and depending on the product, any mishaps or accidents caused by the translations could result in legal action.