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Valuable Ways Remote Interpreting Can Help Your Business Now


How can remote interpreting help your business? What valuable ways can it contribute to resiliency and growth, especially right now? All of us are experiencing how Covid-19 has upended the world economy. In fact, we have not seen this level of societal disruption since the flu pandemic of 1918. Shelter in place orders, social distancing, personal protective equipment, and masking up have all become an integral part of the new American lexicon. At the same time, the stock market and the broader American economy have struggled to find some sense of placidity in the midst of a pandemic. After the economy took a nose dive in March, it then followed by a more V-shaped recovery. But many prognosticators are still concerned that Covid-19 flare ups will lead to renewed shutdowns and further economic decline. So, what are businesses to do during this time of uncertainty?

Why Are Remote Business Solutions Vital?

Despite small business loans, unfortunately many retailers have been forced to shut their doors and lay off workers. Those that have been more fortunate have seen a steep decline in sales and are struggling to develop cost-cutting strategies. They are also trying to convince consumers they are worthy of their hard-earned dollars. Meanwhile, technology-based meeting platforms like Zoom, have surged in popularity as individuals meet in teams to assemble new pandemic-based plans for growth. But what about businesses that rely heavily on interpreters to provide services to their clients? This includes not only government agencies, but also the medical, government and legal communities. Since on-site interpretation has become a possible health concern, how can businesses in need of translators thrive in a time of social distancing?

woman video call remote interpreting
Remote interpreting enables businesses to still meet client and customer language interpreting needs, despite the challenges of the pandemic. Photo by 74images on Canva.

What Makes Remote Interpreting Unique?

Remote interpreting helps businesses to safely meet the language services needs of their communities. Remote interpreting is a form of interpretation that neutralizes all of the coronavirus-related health risks. Instead, remote interpreting meets language needs virtually through available technology. With the use of easily available smart phones, accessible mobile apps, and high-speed internet connections, a powerful communication cocktail exists. This remote matrix, so to speak, helps businesses to thrive despite the unpredictability of Covid-19.

Types of Remote or Virtual Interpreting Services

At A Foreign Language Service – AFLS, we offer two types of remote interpreting to meet language interpreting needs for businesses, organizations, and individuals:

  • OnDemand© Over the Phone Interpreting (OPI)
  • Video Remote Interpreting (VRI)

With OPI and VRI services, the safety benefits of remote interpreting are clear. All interpreting work can be done in a manner that follows the safety protocols put out by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), as well as city, state and local governments. Since the interpreting is done over the phone, all parties involved are protected from human contact. This negates the risk of contracting covid-19. These types of virtual interpreting can help your business to respond with agility to a complex economic season.

What Are Benefits To Over the Phone Interpreting?

Over the phone interpreting, or OPI, is a convenient, time-saving, and cost-effective. This form of remote interpreting provides a way to access quality language interpretation while still adhering to CDC safety guidelines. With over the phone interpreting, a business can gain access to a qualified interpreter through the use of a mobile app on a smart phone. In addition, this service is provided on demand, so instead of having to wait for an on-site interpreter, access to interpretation can be gained much more quickly. Not only is it convenient and time-saving, but it also costs less than an on-site interpreter. Since over the phone interpreters don’t have to be on site, there’s no need for transportation reimbursements.

Over the phone interpreting, as a type of remote interpreting, helps businesses to quickly access the services of a trained, professional interpreter. Photo by Jacob Lund on Canva.

OPI Interpreting Can Provide Valuable Privacy Protections

A tangential benefit of over the phone interpreting that may not be immediately obvious, is anonymity. Many limited English proficiency speakers belong to communities that are small and tight knit, where everyone knows one another. Although that’s wonderful for community support and encouragement, it can be a challenge when on site interpreters also come from that same community. Clients may find it difficult to be honest about their medical symptoms when the interpreter is their mother’s best friend. Individuals may be reticent to share what they saw in a legal deposition if the interpreter may pass that information onto the community. OPI has the advantage of removing those obstacles.

How Can Video Remote Interpreting Add Value For Your Business?

Similar to over the phone interpreting, there is video remote interpreting, or VRI. VRI is the fancier cousin to OPI. It comes with the same benefits of convenience, time-saving, and cost-effectiveness. However, whereas over the phone interpreters are not able to see the client, video remote interpreting comes with the benefit of visual contact. This provides a distinct advantage because language is not only communicated by the words that are said. Tone of voice, facial expressions, hand expressions, and body language also contribute to the message.

VRI Interpreting Helps Promote Accuracy and Efficacy

Although on site interpreting is the industry standard for being able to interpret all these things, VRI is a suitable alternative. By seeing the client, especially in cases like a medical setting, the interpreter can better build rapport, ease fears, and communicate empathy. This, of course, is invaluable in assisting a person in a stressful medical situation. That individual needs to accurately communicate their symptoms to a doctor. Accurate interpreting is needed not only for a proper diagnosis, but also for informed consent when medical procedures are needed.

elderly couple video call remote interpreting
Remote interpreting, such as virtual remote interpreting, helps ensure accuracy and efficacy for patients, clients, and customers. Photo by Zinkevych on Getty Images Pro

Remote Interpreting Customized To Meet Your Needs

Here at AFLS, interpreting is our business. Whether you need video remote interpreting, over the phone interpreting through a smart phone, or you even prefer to connect by a landline, we speak your language. With an easy to use app you can quickly find a qualified interpreter to assist you with OPI or VRI if you prefer. Our mobile platform is easy to use, our interpreters are qualified and professional, and our prices are affordable. If you need the right interpretation at the right time and at the right price for your business to succeed, we speak your language.

Language Interpreting And Translation Services For Growth

As a trusted leading language service provider, A Foreign Language Service – AFLS provides OPI/ VRI interpreting and on-site interpreting, certified document translation, and localization services to clients around the world. We offer services in up to 400 languages, including high demand ones such as Chinese, Spanish, Arabic, and American Sign Language (ASL). Depending on your needs, we can also provide support in endangered and emerging languages like Basque, Irish Gaelic, and Quechua. In this vital work, we collaborate with a network of 1500-strong passionate, licensed professional translators and interpreters based throughout the world. Our clients include global brands and government agencies, as well as the medical, legal, business, and education communities. At AFLS, we understand the power and importance of language. We know that every language matters. Your language matters. Contact us today for a free quote!

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Thank you for your interest in our services and requesting a no-obligation quote from us! A Foreign Language Service is committed to providing exceptional translation, interpreting and ASL services to our clients. We would love to help your organization with any interpreting and /or translation needs that you may have.

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