In a service business, quality assurance is of the utmost importance since the service is ordered before being actually delivered.

For a localization project, quality assurance lies in different levels or processes:

  •  Ensuring linguistic quality
  •  Ensuring service quality
  • Ensuring a permanent quality improvement

As part of its Quality Assurance process, WhP sets up a Service Level Agreement with recurrent customers. This agreement defines Key Performance Indicators which will be measured and discussed during Quarterly Business Reviews.

Linguistic quality

WhP translates millions of words every year and the vast majority of this work is done by human translators. WhP only works with professional translators selected through a very strict process and subject to continuous assessment throughout the relationship. Translators are assigned to customers so that the same linguist can work on all their content, provided their performance has proven satisfactory. WhP always maintains a team of suitable translators to ensure we can cope with high-volume fluctuations as well as unexpected events such as accidents or sick leave without taking any risk on linguistic quality.

Client-specific localization processes and workflows are put in place to ensure the best linguistic quality:

  • Translation and review by our linguists
  • Query management to ask for clarification on the source content, on processes or on preferred terms and style
  • Customer review to provide valuable feedback to translators who will approve corrections to familiarize with customers expected style
  • Linguistic testing to ensure that the final product, whether a software, a web site, a document, a multimedia component, is fully and properly localized

On regular bases, we perform Linguistic Quality Assurance (LQA) control, to measure the actual level of performance and compare it with the expected level. WhP recommends using the LISA model 3 linguistic quality evaluations, which is the latest standard available and in the future the Dynamic Quality Framework from TAUS.

Linguistic quality also lies in linguistic asset management:

  • Translation Memory
  • Terminology
  • Style guide
  • Check lists

Building these assets and properly managing them along the performance of projects is key to ensure a consistent quality

Service quality

Although linguistic quality is paramount on a localization project, service quality is also key.

WhP assigns a senior Project Manager in charge of managing customer relationships. This Project Manager is autonomous and will manage all aspects of the project: financial aspects (preparing quotes, commitment on schedule, reporting…) as well as technical and linguistic aspects (linguistic quality assurance, assigning translators or engineers, selecting tools and setting-up efficient processes…) and production from project launch to final delivery and invoicing.

The Project Manager specifies with his customer the communication and reporting processes and which Key Performance Indicator (KPI) to measure and expected level to reach. KPIs can include:

  • Turn-around time of projects depending on complexity and volumes
  • Response time to deliver a quote
  • Average time to solve a customer complaint if any.
  •  …

Permanent quality improvement

  • Quarterly Business Reviews  

Key Performance Indicators are reviewed on regular basis as part of a Quarterly Business Review which happens either face to face or via a web-conference.

Deviation from KPI-expected levels triggers a root analysis followed by an improvement plan.

All actors involved on the projects, including translators as well as employees on the customer side, are invited to provide feedback on difficulties encountered and give possible improvement suggestions.
The progress and efficiency of the improvement plans is controlled during the Quarterly Business Reviews (QBR)

  • Non-compliances management
Although all efforts target the highest quality achievement and although we have an extremely low rate of non-compliances, we have set-up an efficient process to handle them:

  • The fully empowered Project Management team first makes sure the problem is corrected as soon as possible
  • He/she then analyses and reports the source of the non-compliance and implements a corrective action in full transparency with the customer
  • He measures with the customer the efficiency of the corrective action along the next projects
  • WhP also provides escalation process to the Operation Manager or to the WhP’s CEO in case the non-compliance is related to the misalignment of a Project Manager performance and our customer expectation.
  • Quality certification
WhP was among the first localization companies to be certified ISO 9000 back in 2005 and has continued improving its performance since then as part of its focus on Quality Assurance.

WhP is supporting all initiatives in the localization industry to set-up quality standards either with LISA (localization industry Standard Association), ETSI ISG LIS (Industry Specific Group for Localization Industry Standards within ETSI) GALA (Globalization And Localization Association) or TAUS (Translation Automation User Society)