With the latest technological advancement always just around the corner, it is becoming more and more important to make sure that you and your business are always on top of it all. Business success is built on your people, processes and systems, but when processes and systems are being constantly developed, how can you ensure that your workforce is constantly up to date and delivering the performance you require?
e-Learning is key in ensuring a high-quality service, and guarantees that your team will always be receiving the best training sessions on how to give the best service, but what happens when you have multiple teams, speaking multiple languages?
e-Learning localisation allows your staff around the world to receive the same information and training, no matter their language. As e-Learning courseware usually involves audio-visual elements, we’ve put together a few tips on how to get the most out of your budget.
10 tips to keep your foreign language audio cost-effective
- Limit the number of characters with speaking parts in your course. Minimum voice-over costs will apply for each character, regardless of how many words they speak. If you have many characters, consider using the same voice-over artist for more than one part to avoid extra fees. Use one female artist for all female characters and one male artist for all male characters, for example.
- Consider using subtitles instead of audio in the foreign language versions.
- Avoid complicated synchronisation of on-screen text and voice-over.
The same content in other languages won’t contain the same amount of words, or won’t be read at the same speed as in English, so will need to be synchronised in each language.
Recording without any time constraints, for example, as your audio file is triggered by a new slide or mouse click rather than being synchronized to multiple actions on the one slide, is the cheapest option.
- If you do require a voice-over that synchronises with animations/videos, this needs a carefully prepared script with specific time codes so that the correct words and audio are aligned in the foreign language. Your language service provider can prepare this, but if you already have a timed script available for the English content, supply it as reference material for the foreign language version and cut down the cost of having to prepare a new one.
- Know your voice-over brief. Do you want a male or a female artist? Avoid voice-overs by children as these are more expensive. Do you want the voice-over to be instructional or friendly, and what about the pace – moderate or fast? Do you have any existing courses that can be supplied as reference material? Your language service provider can advise you on these points, especially as foreign languages may be more suited to a different tone or pace, for example although regional accents are often used in English voice overs, this is best avoided in target languages. Having this information at the start of the project helps get it completed quicker and easier.
- Only use a language service provider who offers professional studio recordings to achieve high-quality audio in your course. Experienced voice-over artists and sound engineers will be used.
You want to avoid the risk of poor sounding audio which detracts from the user experience and may require a complete re-recording of the audio.
- Sign-off the voice-over script before proceeding to record – your language service provider can prepare the script and will include a pronunciation guide to ensure that company names, acronyms, and product names are spoken to match your corporate preferences.
- Select your preferred voice-over artist from samples or castings provided by your language service provider to ensure the audio will meet your needs.
- If you want to use the same artist in future projects, let your language service provider know. If you have a large course, it can be cheaper to record just a small part of the course using the same artist if you have an update, and then fit this into the existing course, rather than having to record the entire course again to include the update.
- Check that your language service provider carries out a quality assurance check of the recorded audio before delivery. It’s difficult to check this if you don’t speak the foreign language yourself, but you want to avoid incorrect audio which detracts from the user experience.
Multilingual e-learning solutions are integral in achieving consistency across your company and boosting your employee engagement. Ensure that no matter what language you’re communicating in, the same message is translated every time.