The topic of globalisation is gaining momentum in the world of associations and professional organisations. Up until now, many such organisations have been content just to serve their own membership within their own countries and they have done this very well. Why should associations look at global certification?
We now live in a world where there is unprecedented interconnection between different cultures. There has been an increase in global alliances and supply chains, with new markets and new products constantly emerging. This interconnection requires people to have global skills which are transportable, and this is where internationally recognised professional certifications are coming into their own.
Many organisations offering professional training, certification and accreditation already have members across the world. English-language certifications produced in countries like the USA, Canada, Australia and the UK are held in high regard by people in other countries and, as a result, are in high demand.
If a professional association is striving to better the career prospects of its members and improve their knowledge of the subject matter, then a test of their competency in the Body of Knowledge (BoK) should not depend on their level of English; English proficiency can be tested using a TOEFL test.
What are you testing? The candidates’ knowledge of English or their knowledge of the subject matter? For any subject, the knowledge of the subject matter should be the most important consideration.
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We have partnerships in place with experts in this area, who can assist you to build a plan for success.
In order to determine which language to tackle first, it is useful to look at the country from which you are receiving the greatest level of demand.
What are some of the initial considerations?
While offering a certification or training programme in another language and/or country can create an expansion opportunity for your association and an opportunity to increase your global relevance, the journey to seizing such opportunities requires a sound strategy and the expertise to execute it.
- What do your members want and need?
- What do those who employ them want and need?
- Is the certification applicable internationally or will it need to be not just translated but also adapted and localised?
- Does the Body of Knowledge (BoK) lend itself well to translation/adaptation?
- Are your candidates from other countries currently getting lower grades than native-English speakers?
- Will this be tapping into the needs of multinational companies?
- Is this a profession with standard “global” elements of competency?
- Are there already members of the association in the target country?
- Will you be offering a translated and adapted version of your current certification or do you wish to make your certification an officially sanctioned version within a country (this will involve contracts with overseas governments or local providers, for example).
- Are there native speakers of other languages within your own country who would benefit from the certification in their own language (for example workers in service or retail sectors)?
- Does your system handle other character sets?
Translation, Localisation and Adaptation (TLA)
It is vital that all the three steps of translation, localisation and adaptation are followed in order to ensure the success of your project.
Localisation and adaptation are all about understanding the culture in which you will be operating and then adapting the text so that it is culturally, administratively, technically and legally valid and acceptable in the target country.
If you are contracting with a supplier to sell and market your certification in the target country, then a critical part of the whole process is ensuring that the content is localised to reflect local case studies and practices.
The above is not an exhaustive list of all the areas for consideration. There are many different aspects to consider before you even get to the translation stage. We can help with consultation services to help you to produce a plan for moving forward with putting your certification into another language.
Wealth of expertise
We have a wealth of experience in the translation and adaptation of all types of test, assessment and exam. We work for some of the leading names across a wide variety of subject areas, including the following:
- Health and Safety
- Restaurant Hygiene
- Veterinary Science
- Food and Nutrition
- Retail, and many more.
It is also important to consider that you don’t just need to translate the exam materials, but also all the training and preparation materials, marketing materials, website and more. You can find more information on our work with marketing materials and website localisation on the relevant service pages.
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If this is your vision, please contact us for a discussion about your particular requirements.