Consistency is an important aspect when we evaluate whether the translation is good or not. So how to maintain consistency in translation has become a concerned subject among translators. In my opinion, there are four ways to assure consistency as much as possible.
Firstly, creating a glossary for the translation. By doing so, we can assure consistency from term level. We can add terms in a Word or Excel text. Therefore, we can refer to the glossary when the same terms occur again during translation. Thanks to the development of Computer Assisted Translation (CAT) tools, we can now use them to store thousands of terms. The most popular tool for this purpose is SDL Multiterm. This tool is very convient and easy to use, you can use all the terms whenever necessary after you add them to SDL Multiterm and you do not have to worried these terms will be lost.
Secondly, using CAT tools. These CAT tools have memory function. They can remember the text you just translated and provide the exact translation when you search the text from them. Compared to the glossary, using CAT tools helps you to ensure consistency from not only the terminology level but also the sentence level, sometimes the paragraph level. CAT tools become more and more popular among translators, translation agencies and clients, as they help the latter to conserve time, money and quality, most importantly, they play an important role in maintaining consistency.
Thirdly, making notes during translation. Sometimes, CAT tools are not available during translation for some restricted reasons. For this instance, we can write down some terms or sentences which are required to notice later in translation. Also, we can highlights some uncertain words. These highlighted parts will remind us to pay more attention to when checking the translation the second time. Furthermore, use xbench to check the translation after you finish the job. Xbench is a useful tool which can figure out the non-uniform parts. You just need to choose some options when you run xbench to perform the task.
Fourthly, communicating more with translators who are performing the same tasks as you do. Sometimes, several translators have to deal with one translation project. In this case, maintaining consistency becomes more difficult as different persons may give different expressions for the same words or sentences. The only way to achive the consistency objective as far as possible is to communicate among translators. Usually, we will create an online chat grop for the relevant translators. So the translators can talk about concerned translation in this chat group. Furthermore, they can discuss some uncertain words, phrases or sentences in the chat group to solve all puzzled problems.