Language translators who are tasked with conducting research for a client might consult with the client or co-workers during the information discovery stage of the project. Often certified translators find it is particularly helpful to have someone that they can discuss the project with. It’s also helpful to review the organization of reports and presentations that other translators have produced that are similar to the one that is being planned. Reviewing these reports and presentations can provide useful details by suggesting details the translator will need to prepare the report or presentation. In other cases, previous reports could direct the professional translator to specific sources and websites that might be good resources for facts and figures. Of course, the translator’s own specialized training or knowledge might also provide an added strength during the discovery process. Since your coworkers and other business contacts can be a valuable source of data, you should turn to them when needed.
Since you are tasked with the project, you will need to count on your own ideas that are grounded in your education, training and personal experiences. However, if you have difficulty coming up with data to answer your research problem then you will need to turn to more formalized research. The more formal types of research involve the review of published works that can come from a variety of sources and will build-on your own ideas. This process will entail literature reviews from books, magazines and the internet. Other types of formal research can include analytical research using sophisticated experimentation or sampling techniques that make use of questionnaires, surveys or highly structured interviews of experts in the field.