Professional translation


Explore job opportunities for translators

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The translator has always been essential for communication between people from different countries or speaking different languages. Like other culturally rich countries, Spain has many job opportunities for translators in multiple fields who translate from and into Spanish. As the second most spoken language in the world, Spanish has become essential in establishing commercial relations or disseminating its extensive cultural heritage around the world, thus breaking down language barriers.

Jobs for translators in Spain

Translation in Spain covers a wide variety of specialised fields, including legal, literary, medical, and audio-visual translation, among others. Each of these branches requires a specific set of language skills and technical knowledge. A translator may choose to specialise in one of these fields to further their professional career, developing a deep understanding of the terms, contexts, and conventions specific to each speciality. This specialisation not only enables them to offer high quality translation services in a specific field, but also gives them the opportunity become established as an expert in that field and stand out in a competitive and constantly evolving market.

The work of interpreters is also in high demand in this country. In the case of interpreting, a distinction is made between simultaneous, consecutive, liaison, and conference interpreting, each with its own specific requirements and techniques. The work of an interpreter in commercial or political meetings, in international business, in a hospital, or in any other setting is essential for effective and unimpeded communication between people of different languages.

These opportunities vary between on-site and remote work, and between working as a freelancer or as part of an organisation or company, opening up a range of options for professionals in the sector.

Legal and sworn translation

Sworn translators fulfil one of the most demanding and specialised roles in the field of translation. This speciality involves the translation of legal documents, such as contracts, court rulings, wills, commercial agreements, and regulatory documents, among others. Translators must have a sound knowledge of the legal systems of the source and target countries, which includes not only mastering the specific legal vocabulary of one language and the other, but also understanding the cultural and legal differences between the two legal systems. Accuracy and consistency are essential in this work, as any error or ambiguity, no matter how trivial it may seem, can have significant legal consequences.

In Spain, sworn translators must be recognised by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation in order to practise as such.

Literary translation

Literary translation involves the transfer from one language to another of literary works, such as novels, short stories, poems, and plays. Not everyone can understand the classics of world literature and produce them in another language with the same intention and style as the original. The literary translator must capture the meaning of the work in question and reformulate it with the expressions and idioms of the target language, but without departing from the message of the source text. It is essential to understand the author’s puns, metaphors, cultural references and other stylistic elements in order to find effective equivalents in the target language.

Literary translators enrich literature from all over the world and cultural exchange through literary works.

Scientific-medical translation

This is the specialised discipline that covers the translation of texts related to science and medicine, such as clinical reports, research articles, medical devices and drugs, among others. In this field, in addition to mastering language skills in the source and target languages, it is necessary to understand the technical and scientific concepts of the medical field.

Audio-visual translation

All audio-visual content such as films, series, TV shows, documentaries, video games, and other multimedia materials must go through a translation process in order to reach the widest possible audience. This is where the audio-visual translator comes into play. They must be able to consider not only the spoken or written text and its cultural expressions, but also other visual or auditory elements, such as gestures, facial expressions, sound effects or, in the case of dubbing, lip movements. There are different techniques in audio-visual translation such as subtitling, dubbing, and voice-over, among others.

A translator’s work and its characteristics

Translation work requires a high level of proficiency in the working languages, both in the source and target languages. The linguistic aspects, traditions, and cultural conventions of each country must also be appreciated in order to identify the cultural differences of the languages being worked with and adapt the translation of the final text to maintain the message and intention of the original.

The salary of a translator in Spain can vary considerably depending on the speciality in which they work. This differentiation also exists between translators who work in a company (in-house), who have a fixed salary, and those who are freelancers (self-employed), who get paid by the word or by the projects they accept, depending on the demand for their services, their area of expertise, and the language combination they offer.

Human translation vs. machine translation

As technology advances, machine translation is continually improving. This leads many companies to use it more frequently, thus reducing the need for human intervention and reliance on translators. However, no matter how much faster a machine may  translate than humans, there are still nuances and issues of style and fluency that only a person can identify. For the moment, machine translation engines have a basic, and not deep, understanding of texts, so they still make mistakes in translating context, cultural nuances, or ambiguities.

In conclusion, whether it is translating from scratch or revising machine translations, the role of the translator is essential to facilitate effective communication, promote knowledge sharing and foster understanding between people who speak different languages. This work makes a significant contribution to strengthening social cohesion, promoting progress, and fostering global development. Therefore, translation remains a relevant and necessary profession in today’s society to build a more connected world.

We hope you have found this information useful. We will be happy to provide you with more details about job opportunities for translators. Do not hesitate to contact us or visit our blog for more information.

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