The Rise in Demand for Live Interpreting of Virtual Events

Discover how live interpreting can be the difference between success and failure for multilingual virtual events and meetings.

date iconMay 23, 2024     tag iconInterpreting

The world saw many temporary changes during the Covid-19 pandemic. But one trend that has continued to be the case has been the shift of corporate budgets from business travel to web conferencing services, including real-time interpreter services. These enable participants from around the world to interact, learn and share ideas in their native language during virtual sessions. 

Taking as an example the complex field of life sciences, it’s easy to see why virtual interpreting has become more popular in recent years. The intricate, specialist vocabularies, the plethora of industry acronyms, and the subtle variations in emphasis and audience-specific nuances can trip up even native speakers. 

Add to the picture the potential impact on patient safety – which leaves little tolerance for misinterpretation – and the demands on healthcare professionals’ time, and the need for high-quality interpretation becomes clear. 

Interpreting technology advancements

Not too long ago, simultaneous interpretation (learn more about the different types of interpreting) was delivered predominantly on-site. Since then, rapid innovations in interpreting have led to impressive advancements. Today, advanced technology that reproduces the functionality of professional conferencing equipment allows us to run multilingual meetings with simultaneous interpretation in fully remote settings. Each person at the meeting can interact and listen in their desired language. 

User experience, high security, and imperceptible latency are critical factors when it comes to successful simultaneous interpretation for high-profile meetings. There are now fully automated systems to manage multilingual internal and external communication for on-demand or scheduled meetings, whether they’re over the phone, remote, or on-site. 

The requestor can access the system from anywhere, at any time, and connect with an interpreter with the required credentials, thanks to the high precision the interpreting technology guarantees. 

It’s possible to select the right interpreter to suit your type of meeting, industry specialism or interpreting engagement. For example, within the healthcare sector, you can even choose an interpreting specialist by therapeutic area or surgical specialty. 

Making the most of international meetings

Beyond customer-facing interpretation (also known as community or liaison interpreting), demand has soared for highly skilled interpreters who are also subject matter experts. As the world has moved towards more virtual events and meetings, specialized industries are no exception. For example, life sciences companies have reprioritized budgets to get the most from their virtual events – be it a symposium, town hall, remote training, international sales meetings, quarterly shareholder or investor meetings, or more. It’s increasingly the case that companies are expecting access to these specialists in more and more languages, due to the increasingly global nature of many industries, spanning the APAC, EMEA and LATAM regions. 

These language and industry specialists must come to sessions well-briefed and rehearsed, adept in the specifics of the topic at hand. This helps put attendees at ease and give them confidence that they may not have when having to speak in a non-native or common business language like English. Providing the ability to communicate in a language that attendees are more comfortable with is more empathetic and inclusive – helping to build engagement from participants, however wide the physical or cultural divide may be. 

Going the extra mile to provide a live translation through interpreting can make all the difference to outcomes in particular contexts like change management, or when participants might be expected to communicate completely new ideas. Remote meetings in those contexts can be difficult enough to secure positive outcomes even when language isn’t a barrier. No wonder global corporations, including med tech and health tech companies are redirecting their events and travel budgets toward professional specialist interpreter services. 

Multilingual health hotlines

Another area increasingly drawing on live interpretation services is call centers - specifically, those connecting patients to real-time health and advice services in their own language. 

In a post-Covid world, pharma companies and healthcare providers are finding that patients are most comfortable discussing symptoms, seeking medical advice, or accessing vaccine or testing-related services in their own language. Again, this is possible with the help of highly-trained interpreters using specialist medical terminology who can act as the bridge between the call center agent and the patient. 

In these situations, AI offers substantial value in connecting the call center agents automatically to live interpreters. Every minute counts – the shortest ‘call answer time’ being the holy grail that over-the-phone interpreting seeks to achieve. AI provides a great advantage here, helping tremendously in ensuring a favorable call experience for both the patient and the healthcare provider. 

Learn more about interpreting solutions for your next event

Faster turnaround times

The progression of AI solutions for interpreting

While specialist professional interpreters are known to be critical in ensuring patient safety, there is a role too for machine-based interpretation – for less mission-critical content where there is some tolerance for imperfection. 

Such options can be important for smaller companies with more modest budgets and can meet a tangible need. We’ve seen major biotech, med tech and health tech organizations draw on this option for internal training in manufacturing plants, for instance, where technology can play a powerful role in delivering content to teams in their own language. 

AI and machine translation capabilities are evolving at an impressive pace. For example, we recently provided AI-powered live interpreting for the multilingual product launch of a life sciences company. 

Meeting tomorrow’s interpreting services demand today 

Across the board at Acolad, we’ve seen demand for our comprehensive range of specialist interpretation services soar as companies have adapted and, in many cases, permanently changed the way they plan and manage events and meetings. And we’ve been immensely proud of our ability to deliver the scale and caliber of service our clients expect and need during a very challenging time. 

That’s because we can draw on a global network of thousands of certified and highly-skilled language professionals (including interpreters, translators, and terminology specialists), capable of delivering high-level language services across a wide range of specialist disciplines and undergo regular training and assessment, under our close supervision. And it’s an area we continue to keenly invest in. 

date iconMay 23, 2024     tag iconInterpreting

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