Case Study : Teradyne Ensures Quality Patent Translations with MultiLing

This is the first in a series of case studies on how MultiLing helps multinational enterprises accomplish their global initiatives with the accurate, highly specialized, and secure translations of their intellectual property and/or technical materials.

Teradyne Ensures Quality Patent Translations with MultiLing

Teradyne is a leading supplier of automatic test equipment used to test semiconductors, wireless products, data storage and complex electronic systems that serve consumer, communications, industrial and government customers. In 2011, the North Reading, Mass.-based company had sales of more $1.4 billion and currently employs approximately 3,400 people worldwide. The company translates its intellectual property/patents into 15 languages in more than 20 countries, but most often from English to Japanese, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese and Korean.

When Ke Le started as Teradyne’s director of intellectual property in 2010, he realized immediately the need for a high quality translation service provider. “Our intellectual property is extremely valuable and even one inaccuracy in translation can change the meaning of the patent coverage. We couldn’t risk that happening,” Le said.

Perfect Timing for Teradyne and MultiLing

Ke Le soon received an email from Kasey Beck of MultiLing, an enterprise translation service provider that leads the way in creating best practices for multinational IP filings. The timing couldn’t have been better.

After comparing pricing, conducting a review of MultiLing’s translation business processes and checking references, MultiLing conducted a sample translation from Chinese to English, which Teradyne’s foreign agents then checked for quality. “MultiLing’s translation was accurate and pricing was very competitive,” Le said.

This first translation took place in June 2011 and MultiLing has been translating Teradyne patents ever since, with 20 translated between January and August of 2012. Again, Teradyne sends patents in English and MultiLing translates the majority of those into Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Japanese and Korean. Multiling coordinates directly with Teradyne’s Singapore office for translation.

“MultiLing’s unique translation model and quality control processes gives us highly accurate translations at a very competitive price,” Le said. “In fact, we’re able to accurately translate even more patents and our foreign associates only have to do a quick scan of the claims. This provides quality documents and lowers overall costs.”

The MultiLing Centralized Model Improves Quality

Like most enterprises, Teradyne regards quality as the most important project requirement. To this end, MultiLing’s unique, centralized model drives rigorous, redundant quality controls carried out by both proprietary technology and highly specialized team members at multiple steps in the translation process. MultiLing’s diagnostic workflow process focuses on enhancing quality by constant improvement, increased efficiency, and the elimination of errors.

“We’ve found that this combination of technology, organizational structure, and quality control processes, all organized within a complex production environment, is unique to MultiLing within the translation industry,” MultiLIng’s Beck said.

MultiLing’s teams of highly specialized translators, the majority native speakers working in their home countries, are the foundation of the company’s model. In fact, MultiLing ensures that every hand that touches an IP filing is intimately familiar with both the language and technical nature of the patent and the filing requirements of each individual country.

Terminology management, another pillar of MultiLing’s model, also helped improve the quality of Teradyne’s patent translations by establishing a common terminology database prior to translation. The absence of a centralized terminology management system across all countries and languages relevant to an enterprise often leads to errors and omissions in the numerous versions of highly technical translated documents. MultiLing’s processes and technologies safeguard the consistent use of predefined terminology that is specific to an enterprise’s internal vernacular as well as that of their target industries and geographies.

“By working with MultiLing, we’re able to get our patents out quickly and cost-effectively – and we are confident that they are accurately translated and localized for each country in which we do business,” Le said. “I’ve recommended MultiLing to our other divisions, including marketing, and we anticipate the results will be just as valuable.”