The hospitality and tourism industry is a dynamic high-tech industry. Digital transformation and technological progress are an integral part of almost all areas of modern life. High-speed Internet, big data, artificial intelligence, virtual and augmented reality, chatbots, blockchain, biotechnology, robotics – this is the “today” of the hospitality and tourism industry.
Various translation technologies keep up with the latest trends. Hotels take extra steps to take care of guests, encouraging them to relax and enjoy their vacation. This offers a more convenient guest experience, resulting in greater customer satisfaction.
Today, no one is surprised by translation technologies during their stay at the hotel before check-in and after check-out. This has become possible thanks to a unified management system that processes guests’ orders in real-time, developed specifically for the hospitality industry.
It doesn’t matter what country you are from and what language you speak: such systems allow guests and employees of the hotel located in different parts of the world to communicate in real-time. With new mobile technology, hotels can develop closer bonds with their customers by enabling them to communicate with their employees in their language. In addition, the overall level of service is improved.
It’s not all that simple
Unfortunately, most of these systems first translate individual words and expressions and then combine them. That is why such translations, as a rule, are replete with grammatical and lexical errors. That is why human translation services are still relevant today because translation is not just about transforming words from one language to another. This is a much more complicated process. Therefore, it doesn’t matter how good the algorithm is: machines have one big drawback – they cannot understand the meaning of the text.
Machine translation problems
Machines cannot transmit emotions
Emotionally colored texts (for example, marketing, and promotional materials) require a unique approach called “transcreation.” Translators need to find a suitable equivalent in the target language and sometimes even fundamentally rearrange the entire sentence, paragraph, or text using words not in the original text to get an appropriate response from the target audience.
In this case, translators must select words and constructions inherent in a particular language and culture. To do this, linguists must understand both languages (source and target) and cultures. As you might have guessed, machine translation engines cannot do this.
Machines cannot use transformations
I will not go deep into the theory of translation. Still, linguists use many specific translation transformations in translation (the number varies depending on the linguistic school and theories). They cover various aspects, from grammar and syntax to vocabulary and semantics. Such transformations are used according to the context, and their correct application results from intellectual work and in-depth analysis of the text.
Artificial intelligence in its current form is not capable of such transformations since complex interlanguage processes with numerous variables cannot be expressed through programmed algorithms.
An innovative way?
Specialists in the field of translation technology are not standing still, developing and improving new technologies that behave like artificial intelligence, the level of which rises as they gain experience. New services learn to recognize and correct errors in the translation itself. People tend to make mistakes, but a machine translator tries to find this error in the target text (this applies to semantic errors, incorrect terms, erroneous and contradictory statements, etc.).
Some machine translators can handle the most common typos. On the other hand, human translators can find and correct such errors during translation.
The future of translation technology
Every day, new technologies cover more and more languages and are available for all platform users. Imagine a guest sending a message in German to an Italian hotel. There, the employee will see its translation into Italian, will answer in their native language, and the guest from Germany will receive an answer in German. Efficiency and transparency of service are what the hospitality industry stakes on.
The hotel’s multicultural staff can use the platform for internal communication, making their work comments in different languages immediately translated. All a hotel employee has to do is choose the language that suits them.
The hospitality industry is international, and all communication barriers must be overcome to ensure maximum guest comfort. And the ability to instantly translate will help with this.
Over to you
The hotel industry is always changing, especially during a time of crisis. Make sure to future-proof your business and continue attracting new guests by investing in these solutions.
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Related article: 4-Step Easy Guide to Hospitality and Tourism Translation
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About Are Morch
Hi, I am Are Morch. Your Digital Transformation Coach that helps hotels create unique and unexpected experiences by freeing up resources to focus on new ideas through value innovation and a growth mindset.