Localization in our World: Managing the Language of International Business Mergers and Acquisitions

Another day, another merger, another acquisition. Whether it is your company, your client’s company or your supplier’s company, it feels like international business is always shifting in some way or another. If you’ve been through a merger or acquisition in your own company, you know first hand how this can affect your business, your employees, and your bottom line. Let’s take a look at these areas in more detail and take a look at how language is a key factor in all of this.

We can start with the basics of what it means to merge or to acquire a business. It is not always transparent to the outside or inside world what is actually happening. A merger is a consolidation of 2 or more companies into a new entity. In mergers, generally a new company name is created as well as a new organizational structure. With an acquisition, there is a lead company that takes over another company and typically retains the same name of that company. Regardless of whether it is a merger or an acquisition, you are taking 2 or more companies, and with them all the cultural considerations, both company culture and the country culture of the enterprise.

What kinds of considerations should be made for mergers and acquisitions that cross international lines? You need to think about how the company culture is defined by the country culture of the companies that are being combined. How is your HR department organized? What has been the official HR language until this point in each of the entities?

There are many levels of employee engagement that need to be considered. We will start with the basics, the content for contracting and HR documents.You may have 2 companies, each with HR in the native language of their home HQ. It’s possible that they have already translated major contracts and documents into English as a common language, especially if they are doing any international recruiting. As you combine the HR function, you will want to take a look at redundancies in contracts and aligning language between the 2. It may make sense to adopt English as a common source language for these documents and then extend out to different languages, or to keep the source content in the native HQ language.

After the basics are taken care of as far as internal communications, you will want to consider what the approach will be for ongoing training and communication. Internal communication includes training and learning as well as memos about the merger/acquisition itself. The clearer you can be with your staff, the more settled they will feel. This includes giving them the details about future plans and changes in their preferred language to avoid misunderstandings.

Once you have determined your internal communication strategy, you can begin to think about your customers as well as your suppliers. Like internal employees, they are going to want clear communication in their language if possible. They will need to know if and how any of their working relationships might change as a result of the merger/acquisition and whether new contracts will be needed. Consider whether, due to your new organizational structure, you are able to service your clients or support your own suppliers more effectively and make sure to include this in your communication plan. Of course, if you are expanding the sales of your products internationally, you will need to localize the product, marketing and training as well. If you need help planning for an international merger or acquisition, contact LingPerfect Translations for a free quote.

Document & Multimedia Transcription Services

Our team of professional linguists have the experience and trained ears to transcribe your speaker’s message accurately to written form. LingPerfect Transcription Services team is prepared for the strongest accents, regional dialects, and technical verbatim to achieve the highest quality transcription possible.

Today’s globalized world creates many language challenges due to the wide range of interactions in the corporate playfield. LingPerfect can handle them all, recorded audio, recorded video meetings, interviews, trials, depositions or hearing. If it is recorded, we will provide an accurate and high-quality transcript of the source.

The LingPerfect transcription method;

  1. We receive the audio or video format file (We can transcript live too!) and our project management team will analyze it to select the best linguist expert for the task.
  2. The expert will carefully and meticulously interpret the meaning and the message the speaker is trying to convey until the transcription is completed and coherent.
  3. Our Quality Control team and management staff will also review both the source and transcription once it is finalized. This will add layers of reliability and certainty to guarantee the best results possible.
  4. LingPerfect’s transcription services are done in a secure and expedited way. We follow accurate proven methods to deliver a professional transcription service on a clear and concise written document.

LingPerfect also provides customized formatting, executive summaries, or any other format required by our clients.

All of our processes follow strict confidentiality standards to protect:

  1. Corporate and Trade Secrets.
  2. Sensitive Information.
  3. Commercial Agreements.

We take pride in managing our information cautiously to protect all parties involved, treating security with utmost care. LingPerfect is fully compliant with HIPAA* Privacy Rules, meaning that projects are managed in a secure environment which limits the amount of information that is shared to transcribers/translators. Also, our personnel are obliged to comply with the integrity and confidentiality policies within the company, making background checks for sensitive projects and if required, sign additional client specific NDA and legal contracts.

*Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996

Global Careers: Translation in the Legal Field

As specialists in legal translation, we at LingPerfect often get asked when translations are necessary and what matters in the legal field. This blog will focus on the various types of legal translations, the reason someone may need a specialized legal translation and the importance translation brings to the legal field.

What types of clients come to us looking for legal translations? This depends on the type of content they are working with. Legal translation encompasses several content types. The vast majority of legal translations that are done are contracts. With the rise in global business, we see contracts between businesses such as sales contracts, contracts with customers such as end-user license agreements (EULAs) and contracts with employees. The most important aspects of translating legal contracts are accuracy of terminology and adherence to local laws. Using terminology that doesn’t work in the target language or breaks regional laws will invalidate the intent of the contract and create loopholes and misunderstandings which are costly to your organization.

Outside of corporate translations, we also see customers who are coming from the legal field for other types of translations. Lawyers, paralegals and other legal support service companies are often required to translate the content of their lawsuits into the language of the participants in the lawsuit or of the country where the lawsuit will be served. There are protocols outlined in the Hague Service Convention (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hague_Service_Convention), which details the requirements for delivering, or serving, legal papers outside of the United States or between countries that are signatories. While translation is not a requirement according to the Hague Service Convention, it is left up to individual member countries, which generally require translating. The EU requires all content to be available in all member-country languages it impacts. This would include legal policies as well as information that may end up in courts.

Other than translating documents for contracts and for lawsuits, legal translators are offered in wraparound services for the legal community, including interpreting services and research in the form of discovery. Interpreters might be asked to participate in court proceedings or in depositions, or statements, made by individuals participating in those proceedings. The research done by legal teams, known as discovery, often includes materials that are written in a language other than English or need to be made available in another language. Legal teams often hire translators to help with the research or translating the findings. Looking for a supplier that specializes in legal translation will ensure that you will get the right translator for your content.

Are you looking for a supplier for legal translations or wraparound services? What are the  most important things to look for? If you are responsible to find a legal supplier, you will want to identify what kind of content you have and the purpose of translating. After you have found a supplier, you will want to let them know what you are looking for and ask for their experience in working with the content types you need, including the experience of the translators as well as important ISO process certification to ensure accuracy in translation and terminology. Ask your vendor to provide references and ask the references how the services worked for them. Maintain communication with your legal translation supplier and make sure someone on your team is available to answer questions the translators may have about your corporate terminology or legal intent, depending on your function. If you would like to discuss legal services provided by LingPerfect Translations, contact us here to get immediate assistance or request a quote.