The sharp trend
During the last few years, a sharp trend in the Translation and Localization industry has been experiencing increasing demand: Managed Services. This outsourcing service more frequently offered in the Technology industry, grew exponentially in the language industry during the pandemic, and leading language service providers (LSPs) in the market began to amplify the benefits of near-shoring managed services.
Mandatory lockdowns closed the doors of many offices, forcing hundreds of Language Service Providers (LSPs) to adapt to managing their teams remotely. It also allowed managers to begin to think of their work forces more flexibly. Geography was no longer a constraint. While the pandemic forced us all to lock down it also opened doors to the global labor pool allowing for increased specialization.
Some translation agencies that have never used Managed Services before might wonder whether entrusting another LSP with such an important task is a good move. Latin America has a proven track record for its expertise to find, train, and prepare Translation Project Managers (TPMs) to serve worldwide partners that are giving this promising way of operating a chance.
Opportunities vs. Risks
What opportunities show up?
With a growing demand for translation knocking at the doors of translation agencies every day, TPM resources have grown increasingly constrained as their workloads increase. Relying on near sourced TPMs to continue their work after hours or to supplement needed resources for increases in demand have provided LSPs greater flexibility in how they manage projects.
Latin America has been providing project management services for decades with Argentina becoming known as an essential operational HUB for all major LSPs. Now with an average of 3200 experienced TPMs, located in Latin America, these “buena gente” that are 50% less expensive than experienced TPMs within the United States became a golden option that larger and smaller LSPs from all around the world are implementing as part of their strategy.
What are the risks?
Many LSPs require TPMs to have a full command of both written and spoken English because they need to be able to communicate with the clients effectively by email and on the phone. It’s a fact that some of them are not perfect English speakers. However, it is very unusual to find one that is unable to address a clients’ need because of a lack of proficiency in the language.
Another challenge is that some LSPs require their whole internal project management team to work within the same schedule. This scenario is not a problem. Most Latin Americans who have been working in this industry for several years have already adapted their workday to US and EU time zones.
As translation demand keeps growing and LSPs continually invest in expanding TPM resources, industry leaders are choosing to contract Managed Services by near sourcing through a trusted partner to give them the professional and financial flexibility they need to meet clients’ needs. Wise LSPs have already identified Argentina as the most profitable market for nearshoring managed services.