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Our Analysts' Insights

Profiles of Interpreting-Focused LSPs in Times of COVID-19

The COVID-19 crisis has hit interpreting-focused language service providers particularly hard. Those with a mostly in-person offering are experiencing significant drops in bookings. Many are trying to offset this loss by transitioning customers to remote interpreting technologies or promoting translation services. Even LSPs with a focus on remote services are facing some losses due to the cancellation of nonessential engagements in healthcare, emergency services, and courts.
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Caring for the Linguist Supply Chain

In a separate blog post ("AB5, COVID-19, and the Plight of Freelance Linguists"), we examined some of the challenges that freelance linguists face right now on two fronts: COVID-19 and changes to labor law – focusing on the situation in California – that have created difficulties for individuals who work as contractors for many LSPs or clients. In this post, we turn to some of the concrete actions that LSPs, end buyers, and linguists themselves can take to improve the situation of th...
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Global Companies Turn to LSP Rapid Response Teams to Cope with COVID-19

Following online group meetings with Leadership Councils and CEOs representing LSPs of various sizes, CSA Research has been speaking with directors of enterprise localization groups over the last few days to hear their perspective on the impact of COVID-19. They identified two changes in their business requirements – their internal and outward-facing content is evolving to become remote-friendly, and they would like their language service partners to respond to quick-turnaround requests without...
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AB5, COVID-19, and the Plight of Freelance Linguists

The COVID-19 pandemic and uncertainty about California Bill 5 (AB5) and similar laws have created turbulence for freelance linguists. Together, they show both the strengths and challenges that the translators and interpreters who power the industry face. COVID-19 has shown how precarious a position many of them are in, including highly successful professionals. Regardless of whether linguists are employees or freelancers, the current situation demonstrates how interconnected all parties are and ...
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What CEOs of LSPs Are Thinking about COVID-19 and Its Effects

Over the last 10 days CSA Research conducted several online group meetings with its various Leadership Councils and LSP research members, mainly CEOs of LSPs of all sizes. This executive brief summarizes and reports the themes, topics, and questions shared by members during these sessions. We arranged their input in four groups: Uncertainty, Business Planning, Operations, and The View Ahead.
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LSP Leadership in the Time of COVID-19

With so much fear and uncertainty driven by the COVID-19 global crisis, there’s not enough information or solid data to make any reliable forecast about a global industry that serves many geographies, verticals, and applications. What we can say is that some companies will see more business, others no changes, and still others will lose clients or business. In the absence of primary data at this stage, what is certain is that leadership during the COVID-19 crisis is more critically important th...
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Removing the Rashomon Effect from Market Analysis

Wouldn’t it be great if we could eliminate the Rashomon effect from the language services and technology industry? If somehow, we didn’t have to rely on guesses, estimations, or conjectures? That’s exactly what CSA Research does.
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The Love-Hate Relationship That Freelancers Have with Agencies

Translators and interpreters have a complicated relationship with language service providers. They depend greatly on them for revenue, but often just don’t like dealing with an intermediary. In CSA Research’s survey of more than 7,300 linguists, we inquired about the working relationship between freelancers and their LSP customers.
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Post-Sales Support Can Seriously Damage the Customer Experience

You buy a product or service once. What that means is that your journey from prospective buyer to customer can be a long and fraught passage. However, once you own it, the challenge changes to how to use it when you install it or something goes wrong. In our research on non-Anglophone markets, we stress-test post-sales support by putting ourselves in the shoes of people who don’t speak or read English very well but run into a problem. If a buyer in Bucharest is lucky, there may be documentation...
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Direct-to-Consumer: How to Get the Global Piece Right

Consumer and digital marketers have so much to deliver that it often looks as if they’re trying to balance multiple spinning plates in the air. One of the trending initiatives that they must integrate into their strategies is the option of direct-to-consumer (DTC), in which their organizations revert to marketing, selling, and supporting individuals – rather than filtering them through third-party marketplaces such as Alibaba, Amazon, or Rakuten. This is a major shift for many medium- to large...
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