How Can An eLearning Localization Service Benefit Your Business?
The COVID-19 pandemic has created a lot of room for the Learning industry to grow along with the rise of the remote workforce. Despite the reduced traffic and long-term quarantine, businesses still have to carry on operating, and the need for education never goes down. It’s just that people now have to work and learn from the distance. The COVID-19 pandemic happens to show how necessary a well-designed eLearning course and system is to any business with high learning needs.
International businesses are among the ones that require the highest level of training.
The complex international business environment can cause a lot of hindrance to the overall workflow of the employees if they’re not properly educated. Similarly, middle to high-level management executives also need to understand the compliance policies, regulations, and other legal issues of the countries they’re working with to minimize legal risk. The employees also need to constantly update their skills, knowledge when working, and eLearning proves to be a cost-effective solution.
However, in an international environment, effective communication is a constant concern. It is hard to pass information from the higher levels to the lower ones without at least once facing the language barriers. The remote workforce can bring tremendous benefit to the organization, but the language barriers prevent it from leveraging that power.
Moreover, it’s almost impossible to design a one-size-fits-all course in such a culturally diverse environment. Employees from different cultures may need different eLearning courses. Personalized eLearning courses have the highest educational effect, but it is challenging to create one. L&D managers now need to find ways to transfer knowledge equally among this highly diverse workforce.
An eLearning localization service is a wonderful solution for them.
eLearning localization is not just about translating educational materials. It is the process of translating while keeping all of the technical and cultural aspects relevant. The localization team aims to translate the content into the target language while making sure that the content is understandable to the learners from a cultural perspective.
The cultural aspects that the localization team takes into account include images, symbols, pictures, fonts, idioms, currency, date format, user interface, and even the color scheme. By paying attention to such minute detail, the localization team helps businesses bridge the cultural gap in an intercultural workplace. Information will be transferred in a much more effective way, therefore minimizing the potential risks from misunderstanding and lack of knowledge.
eLearning localization is an increasingly growing demand from companies seeking to expand globally. Communicating ideas and inspiration among cultures is quicker and more effective.
For example, localization experts can rewrite the date in the correct format that the target countries are using. The US uses the MM/DD/YYYY format, while Mexico uses the DD/MM/YYYY format. Failing to adapt the date format can cause a lot of misunderstandings.
Similarly, there will be a lot of changes to the units of measurement. The US uses “feet” to measure length, but if we bring this content to the EU, that has to be changed into “meter”. We have to do this to reduce confusion while making the readers connect with the resources on a cultural level.
In some cases, people even have to translate the cultural references that appeared in idioms or proverbs. It is simple to understand. Americans have no difficulty in understanding American cultural references, but Germans do, and vice versa. If there are cultural references in the learning material, we either have to explain the reference or use a similar version of it to help the readers understand it more easily, or change it entirely.
2. What does eLearning localization do besides translating the content?
Localization goes beyond the translation of the text. We have to include the following elements in the process:
- Culturally inappropriate images, icons, and references (for example, there are symbols that certain cultures find offensive, so we should try to exclude them from their eLearning content)
- Humor and idioms (even the US and the UK has a vastly different sense of humor)
- Slangs and informal phrases
- Suitable font and font size
- Dates, times, and units of measurement
- Terminology and abbreviation
- Color (in some countries, different colors evoke different feelings)
- User Interface
- Table of contents
- Overall page layout to accommodate for all of the changes above
There are more to the localization process, but the list above is a good enough checklist of the things we need to do when localizing a course. A well-executed localization strategy helps enhance knowledge acquisition, retention and increases engagement in the learning process.
3. Who can benefit from an eLearning localization service?
The target users of eLearning courses are the employees. Specifically, international employees
On the local level, employees already need a lot of training and education. On the global level, this need becomes even more crucial. All employees need to be educated on basic compliance, safety measures, and a lot of other learning topics for the different departments and individuals in such a complex environment.
This helps employees understand better the risks that they may face on the job to protect themselves. The knowledge gained from these courses is also a long-term investment. They can use this newfound knowledge to contribute to the company, developing themselves and accelerating their career advancement.
Employers can benefit immensely from the educated and learned employees. For example, we can also incorporate quizzes and exams into these eLearning courses to keep track of employees’ progress. This ensures that they understand the material properly before they begin working. Their enhanced capability results in higher productivity, reduced risks, and, most importantly, a higher retention rate.
No matter where the employees come from, a personalized eLearning course makes employees feel that they are respected and cared for. This, in turn, results in higher employee satisfaction and loyalty. eLearning courses can even be reused for a huge number of employees, driving onboarding and training costs down. In the long run, all of the benefits add up to a high ROI, both tangible (profit) and intangible (employee satisfaction).
Customers can also benefit from eLearning localization. For highly complex applications and software, a localized tutorial will help them get through the confused state quickly and start using the products right away.
4. How can companies incorporate localization strategy into their products and services?
Companies want to scale gradually as it is less risky. However, by keeping a global mindset from the beginning of the project, it can speed up the process and open the door for exponential growth. eLearning modules should be designed with an aim to be universally acceptable among cultures.
Specifically, this means preparing fully to integrate other languages. Certain languages may take up more space, or are arranged differently from your original language. Accounting for this will make the process of localization easier and more effective. Similarly, the color and images used on the website may be not suitable for some culture, or even industries. Changing the color scheme may reduce brand awareness, so that is another thing to consider when designing your product or services.
At pTranslate, we work to provide exceptional localization service for your company. With the help from thousands of experts in technology who are native or bilingual in the languages of your choosing, we believe we can bring your products, software or applications to a wider pool of audience and customers. pTranslate strives to eliminate the language barriers between companies and countries, allowing for a more connected business world.
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pTranslate is a translation and localization agency for businesses and individuals. We offer world-class language services at a competitive price and exceptional quality. Our goal is to eliminate the language barriers and connect the world.
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