How professional interpretation skills are different from translation? 

professional interpretation services

Interpretation and translation services have become paramount for businesses to carry out and expand their operations in foreign lands. Interpretation services are quite different from translation. Other than the purpose of communication that they serve everything between both phenomena is different. Translation deals with the written content whereas the interpretation deals verbally and translates the speech from one language to another. Interpreters are people who have exceptional communication skills in the target and source language.

Interpretation and translation are both language services that help people communicate. Transparent communication is the key to globalizing the business. However, there are some key differences between both services. Both help businesses and people all across the globe for various purposes. The situation can demand either of the services depending on the urgency and emergency. For instance, the medical and healthcare settings often require interpreters to deal with the urgency and deteriorating condition of the patients.

In general, interpretation services are used in situations where communication needs to happen in real-time, such as in legal, medical, or business settings. Translation services are used in situations where communication can be delayed, such as in the publishing or marketing industries. 

Here are a few factors that show that interpretation is different from the translation and the differences between both. Many times professional interpretation services are the only option that businesses are left with. This is why it is important that interpreters understand their craft and should be working well on it.


The interpretation is carried out in a verbal manner. Interpreters have to wait for the people to speak and finish and they comprehend and translate the content accordingly. Translators, on the contrary, have to take care of the written communication while using the translation technique. Therefore, this may take time. Interpreters translate the spoken language in real time and translators take their time to translate the text.

Time constraints

Interpretation services have to face the pressure of real-time. It is a time-sensitive service and the interpreters have to translate the content right away. Translation on the other hand also has a deadline, however, the translators can take the maximum time to translate the content and produce quality text. They naturally get more time to deal with the complexities of the text.


The interpretation services have this edge of getting over the accuracy due to the demand for the services in real-time. As interpreters have to sit in the live setting, time constraints can naturally affect the translation. The translation accuracy, however, is higher because translators have more time to work on the accuracy of the text.

Direction of translation

The interpretation is often simultaneous or consecutive. Simultaneous interpretation is when the interpreter has to speak a similar language they speak. On consecutive interpretation, the interpreter has to wait til the speaker finishes his content and the interpreter then translates the communication in the required language. The translation is usually done in two main languages from the source language to the target language. The pattern of the document translation though may vary as per the demands of the target region. 


Interpreters carry great responsibility on their shoulders. Contributing to professional interpretation services can be a serious deal. They have to understand the content, vigilantly translate it into their mind, and then utter it for the people waiting. This also has the tendency of inaccuracies and mistakes. However, when the right purpose is served rightly the minor mistakes can be ignored. That however does not imply that interpreters are allowed to commit errors. 

The translators on the other hand have to take care of accuracy, consistency, and other important details. The client can demand different translation formats for different content. The document translation, for instance, requires to follow a defined layout. So, the translation gets monitored quite vigilantly. There is no room for errors in the written content. The responsibility gets doubled and translators can not get away with the mistakes and errors.

Skills required

The skills required for professional interpretation services can be different from the translation. The interpreters need to be really vigilant with listening and speaking skills. They should also be familiar with the different accents of the languages that they speak and deal with. They should be able to speak quickly and accurately. Translators, on the contrary, should be good with their writing and reading skills. They should also be able to make better decisions when they have to exchange words with an alternative word. They should be particularly good with the language nuances. The businesses often reject the translation because they don’t find these according to the language nuances that they are targeting. Furthermore, it is also vital that the companies and clients mention their preferred language dialects and nuances while outsourcing their projects for translation. 


Professional services of interpretation demand skillful interpreters. Many businesses and people often misunderstand the process of translation and interpretation and confuse one with other. Both are language services though and acquired by businesses. The main differences deal with the medium, time limitations, accuracy, translation direction, and skills. 

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