Translators are bilingual experts who specialize in converting written content from one language to another. Generally, they work as freelancers to take up gigs for businesses, expats, and travelers.
There is no single reason to make your career translation; instead, a combination of freedom to work independently, high-paying jobs, flexibility, networking opportunity, all-in-all, a rewarding career option.
This article outlines the key steps to be a professional translator.
Step 1: Become Fluent in the Language
To be a translator, you've to master a foreign language. You may benefit if you were born in a bilingual family or went to a non-English speaking nation for your higher studies, but still, you'll have to learn the inside & outside of the language.
You must achieve a firm grasp of the language, including the grammar structure, sentence formation, cultural awareness, and specialized terminology.
Fluency doesn't happen overnight, and it takes years of practice to have good command.
You can join a learning course, such as an Arabic language learning program, to unlock doors of fresh opportunities and intercultural understanding.
Q. Which Languages Are in High Demand?
The need for translation services has grown in popularity across the globe. There are several languages in high demand in the United States of America, such as Spanish, as they share borders with many Spanish-speaking countries. Because of extensive trade links between the US and the Middle East, Arabic is also in demand.
Step 2: Get Specialized Training
Even if you have accomplished fluency in a language, you still need to develop translation skills to get a good job as a professional translator or take freelance jobs. Some universities and colleges offer specialized e-learning courses to prepare for a translation career.
The American Translators Association's official website provides a list of these schools and their dedicated programs to guide you in pursuing your career in the path of words.
Step 3: Become Certified
As a matter of truth, no professional certification is needed to offer freelance translation services, but having a certificate that validates you have the skills and knowledge for translation can undoubtedly be recognized by your potential top-paying employers.
The American Translators Association has as many as 29 languages for certification. So, you can add value to your resume with the title of "Certified Translator." Moreover, certification will enable you to get a job in the legal field as a translator.
Step 4: Target a Specific Industry
Once you've achieved fluency in the language and have decided to work in this field, you're required to familiarize yourself with industry-specific terminology. It is imperative to understand the relevant terminology; this could prove to be a big game-changer for your career.
For instance, if you are interested in the law field, study legal terminology to become a successful translator.
Step 5: Gain Work Experience
Like many other jobs, you must have the related work experience for bagging a monetary rewarding and satisfying career as a translator. Offering freelance or contract translation services is one of the most practical ways to gain relevant experience that you can include in your resume.
If, initially, you're unable to win the trust of your prospective client leads since you're a newbie translator, in that case, you can take up volunteer opportunities for hospitals and communities. Paid or unpaid internship, the experience is what matters the most.
Let's Wind Up
So, why or rethink? Go ahead and live your dream of becoming a translator. Following these tips will allow you to translate that dream into success.