A cost-of-living crisis, tightening financial conditions across the globe, Russia's invasion of Ukraine, and the lingering COVID-19 pandemic all weigh heavily on the outlook for 2023 and beyond.
The language service industry often finds itself somewhat insulated from economic shifts (given its central role in facilitating the globalization of business), however caution is justified when faced with the looming cloud of recession. While the forces currently shaping the LSP landscape may seem limiting – they can, if harnessed correctly, be just the opposite: a set of tools for moving into the future confidently and successfully. For example, the effect of inflation on the cost of human talent could be approached as a further squeeze on a sector that is already squeezed financially. Or it could be taken as an opportunity to show your best people how much you value them, and an impetus to further explore how technology such as artificial intelligence tools can help humans to produce their best work.
The seller’s market for business development talent could be yet another obstacle on the path to growth. Or you could welcome the fact that this means anyone you hire is choosing your company over the many others clamoring for their attention, and that being a “Great Place to Work” means something to them. You can view offshoring purely as a means to cut costs. Or you could embrace it as a way to create a genuinely diverse, international team of equals. As the saying goes, necessity is the mother of invention. The future of LSPs will be determined by those of us willing to take the conditions we are presented with, and use them to invent a better, smarter, more human way forward, through 2023 and far beyond.
Finally, GenAI will open up new project opportunities for us. We'll be able to seek out larger, more complex projects, pushing back the boundaries of our translation business. This will enable us to meet the growing demand for large-scale translations, while reducing our costs through automation.
In conclusion, I see the arrival of GenAI as an opportunity for the translation industry. It offers considerable advantages in terms of speed, productivity, and expertise, while enabling human translators to concentrate on more complex and creative aspects of their work. By using AI technologies intelligently and strategically, we can continue to provide high-quality “content” that meet our customers' needs and expectations, while reducing our budget and optimizing our processes. This is real added value that we need to seize now.
Read July 2022 statement
Read January 2022 statement