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The Concept and Benefits of Quality at Source


6 min read

Written by


Argos Multilingual

Published on

26 Jun 2017

As a result of globalization, the need for exporting products and services to foreign markets has grown, increasing the demand for translation and localization services. With cultural and linguistic differences between various languages, there is a lot of focus on consistent and high-quality translations.

To cater for the growing demand for quality translations, Argos Multilingual intertwined a lean manufacturing concept known as Quality at Source (QaS) with the traditional translation process.

The traditional translation process involves three steps – translation, editing and proofreading (TEP). In this process, translators are not made accountable for the quality of work produced as editors and proofreaders are assigned the job of checking and fixing linguistic quality issues prior to delivery.

Quality at Source, on the other hand, is founded on the concept of performing quality checks at every stage of the process. Here, every stakeholder (from the client to the translator) involved in the process is responsible for their work and its quality. This prevents defects being passed down the production line and in turn results in higher quality of the final product. At Argos Multilingual, we have implemented Quality at Source into our translation process to “get it right the first time”, equipping all stakeholders with automated QA tools to prevent re-work prior to delivery.

By implementing the Quality at Source concept into our translation process there are 4 key benefits that are gained.

Time and Re-work Reduction

Thanks to performing source review prior to translation and passing the responsibility of quality control onto each stakeholder, the probability of passing errors is minimized and as a result, the time spent reviewing and correcting these errors at later stages is reduced. Also, with pre-translation DTP, the amount of work needed to correct each file prior to delivery is reduced and having clear and concise instructions contributes to a lower number of queries from translators. By equipping stakeholders with QA check tools, they are able to quickly assess their work and reduce the probability of re-work prior to final delivery. Quality at Source has also impacted positively on the client’s workflow by reducing the time needed to validate the translations by a client’s in-country reviewer. For our clients, this means a reduction in time to market, quicker reach to targeted customers and on time delivery of products and services.


Quality at Source is about ensuring that the source files are optimized for translation. That is why Language Leads and DTP experts provide our clients with feedback on how best to optimize their content and files. After analyzing the source files, the Language Lead identifies any issues with the source text and addresses them immediately. Our DTP experts identify potential formatting problems and propose customized solutions regarding file formats. By detecting inconsistencies, errors and selecting the best format, we can be sure that the files are ready and optimized for the target languages.


With every stakeholder managing the quality of their output, the translation process has become significantly more efficient. By automating the translation process and providing stakeholders with QA tools, it has given us the ability to gain greater efficiencies in the workflow. More so, the creation and delivery of clear instructions to the translators has also resulted in a more efficient process. By also automating the Query Management process, Language Leads can more efficiently alleviate source file queries at the start of the translation process.

Cost Reduction

By providing better formatted files, clients can reduce costs significantly, as no additional DTP work will be required in later stages of the process. By performing pre-translation DTP, the amount of post-DTP work is reduced along with post-DTP costs. By detecting errors and getting it right first time, we reduce the amount of work, cost and time associated with making corrections later on in the process. Finally, rather than adding more stakeholders into the process to conduct final checks, at Argos every stakeholder is accountable for the quality of their work. This way, the amount of people involved in the process is decreased, which for the client transcends to more competitive pricing.

To find out more about Quality at Source, watch our webinar: Quality At Source: The Foundation to Success

With Quality at Source, Argos Multilingual produces quality translations through optimization and efficient translation processes, which in turn will saves our clients time and money. Contact Us Today to find out how we can make your next translation project a full success!

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