Adobe Experience Manager (AEM) has moved translation management a big step forward making it possible to use machine or human translations and automating the process with third party plugins and integrations. But for many corporate multinationals, the real issue isn’t the translation itself - it’s the management, deployment and maintenance of multilingual content across languages.
At Luxus, we saw some of our clients were still struggling with this issue, so we set out to find an answer.
Breaking the problem down - managing translations across languages
Let’s look at two seemingly simple questions that turn out to cause a lot of day-to-day problems:
Which content is ready for translation?
Maintaining content on a multilingual global site isn’t usually done by one author but by an operations team. There’s a content owner, content strategist, language champion and, of course, the page builders themselves. So how does the team know which content is ready for translation?
You could simply set a rule that content is translated once it’s published in the master language. But this ‘one size fits all’ approach assumes that every piece of content needs to be rolled out simultaneously around the world – there’s no room for regional variations.
Also, if your team is spread all over the world, with tens of authors, how do you keep track of all the new global, regional and local content?
And finally, how do you control edits on current content online?
Which content have we already sent for translation?
Sure, you could open every single translation project and browse around to find your page but that’s not very efficient.
Depending on the translation agency it could be that you have a project per language, another division for business units and yet another division for segments of your site or even channel.
And if you’re taking advantage of AEM 6.5 multiple language support, this can create challenges of its own.
As you can imagine this can quickly lead to tens of projects. Opening them one by one to find the content you are looking for will take forever.
Business problems, digitally simplified
At Luxus we sat down with developers, content managers (both Luxus and client) and operations team members to explore where translation management programs are consistently falling down. We wanted to know what team members had to grapple with every day.
Armed with a long list of pain points, we applied design thinking to the problem at hand. This gave us a long backlog of amazing ideas of how we could apply digital technology to simplify a perennial business problem.
Our solution was to create dashboard with Coral 3 within AEM. This makes it easy for users to view, edit and manage pages – as well as content and experience fragments – and automatically create projects from selections.
An example view of the translations dashboard in AEM
AEM Translation dashboard - How does it work?
Authors can now mark pages ready for translation, whether they’re new or updated. This marker means the page will appear on the dashboard as ready for translation. The person in charge of creating and managing translations can then easily create projects according to a filter selection.
In addition, the dashboard gives an easily accessed overview of all translations pending, in progress and ready for approval.
Many other features are available such as parking pages for translation, connected workflows for approval and billing properties to allocate costs to different business units.
Results - Providing visibility centralised management from a single dashboard
The results couldn’t have been more satisfying. Content teams now run the translations process far more efficiently and can easily give stakeholders status updates just by checking the dashboard. This has reduced work and effort needed from the content team, letting them focus more on the content itself. We also saw significant cost savings from reductions in the amount of duplicate content or unnecessary content being sent for translation.
Finally, the solution improved visibility and the reporting ability of the content team and its translations. This gave higher satisfaction for requesters, and better management control of translation costs.