The right patent translator can mean the difference between accurate, on-time, and on-budget delivery and a time-consuming error-prone process that drains your budget and exposes your company to undue risk. Here are seven important questions to ask your patent translation services provider before initiating a working relationship.
It takes years, sometimes decades, between developing a product and successfully bringing it to market. To protect that investment, you need to work with a specialist patent translator who knows your industry and technology. By choosing the right patent translation partner today, you can centralize patent translations, control costs, and build consistency while upholding accuracy.
Seven Questions to Ask When Selecting a Company for Patent Translator Services:
- 1. What is your patent translator vetting process?
Patent translators must be highly specialized in your industry with a proven track record of patent translation or patent drafting in your specific field. Ask your patent translation services provider to outline its patent translator vetting and selection process, including the process for ensuring translators stay up-to-speed with relevant industry and translation standards.
- 2. How do you select a patent translator for each project?
Translator placement is extremely important and should be chosen very carefully. At Questel, we not only go beyond general industry background to look for translators with more granular experience. In addition, our patent translation services are designed to cover a wide range of needs, including all office action translations. With our cost-effective ‘Reference Quality’ translation service, for example, you don’t have to break the bank when translating documents you don’t intend to publish, such as prior art that has been identified by international search reports.
- 3. Will the patent translator be available when we need them?
Look for organizations with the capacity to take on your project on your schedule. There are a limited number of patent translators—especially for specific products or industries—so it’s important to select a patent translation provider with a deep network of qualified translators and, ideally, a network of foreign agents. The translation company should also take the initiative to understand and adapt to your preferred patent translation process.
- 4. How do you maintain consistency within and across documents?
Patent documents should leave very little room for interpretation. To ensure your IP is protected against challengers, word choices take on added significance. Through Questel’s centralized workflow tool, our translators have access to and enhance client-specific glossaries, style guides, and translation tools that establish consistency and can also collaborate online to resolve issues from the start of the project.
- 5. What is your quality control process?
As every translation company’s quality control (QC) method will vary slightly, it's crucial to ensure your chosen partner maintains a rigorous process. Understanding your chosen partner’s QC approach and methodology also lets you know the amount of time they will require to deliver accurate translations. For example, at Questel, we use a centralized workflow platform to monitor deadlines to ensure we are always delivering on time and apply ISO-certified standards and industry-leading quality metrics to ensure continuous quality control.
- 6. What are your security measures? Patent documents contain valuable secrets that can have wide-reaching consequences for your company if exposed. Your translation partner must maintain exacting standards for file transfer, data protection, file tracking, client-access portals, and more, especially when patent translators are working remotely.
- 7. Will our documents be filing-ready?
Every patent office has unique requirements for accepted file types, including how the information in each document is ordered. At Questel, we support international filing, including PCT national phase entry and EP Validation, so we not only understand how to comply with standards set by each patent office but can also gather and organize the required formality documents on your behalf. Eliminating the extra step of reviewing and re-ordering the structure of your documents saves costs and ensures your documents are accepted the first time around.
Key Benefits of Combined Patent Translator and Foreign Filing Experience
While there are many translation partners in the market, very few can offer a streamlined process that integrates patent translation into your foreign filing process. Questel combines fixed, all-inclusive and competitive patent translation rates with the ability to integrate the translation process into our international filing solutions to guarantee a streamline process with one invoice and a single point of contact.
You simply send us any instructions and our international filing management service handles all the workflow. We work directly with foreign agents to track deadlines and alert you with timely notifications, ensure filing instructions are accurate and, manage the delivery of formality documents, so you can focus on more important matters.