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HR and the role of translation in 2022

By Tarli Cameron | January 17, 2022 | Blog

HR and the role of translation in 2022

In reaction to the Covid-19 pandemic, companies in every corner of the globe have needed to adapt their operations. Businesses have taken the necessary steps to keep their staff safe and services running in a ‘new normal’ landscape.

One of these changes has been to adopt hybrid working, or in some cases, remote working. The days of being ‘present’ in the office five days a week seem like distant memories. Video chats and calls are no longer a novelty but a necessity to keep the virus at arm’s length.


How has this affected the HR function?

The pandemic has shone a light on the importance of HR and its role in reshaping the workplace. This means that over the next 12 months, HR leaders are likely to see their roles evolve. The employer-employee dynamic has been changed and employers may have to deliver on new structures, needs and demands.

The challenge for businesses in general and HR, in particular, will be to ensure the employee experience is not diminished by the changing work landscape.  Company culture should be retained and mental well-being not adversely affected despite the element of distance. Human resources will need to support management in having or developing the right skill sets to support their staff’s mental wellbeing, taking into account employee diversity. Flexibility will be high on the HR agenda, as will cultivating a culture where their staff feel safe to share their opinions and concerns.

Above all, delivering clear and open communication should be the primary focus. In fact, the HR department may well become the communication hub for every business.


How can HR translation support these objectives?

For many multinational companies, English is often the language of choice for internal communications. That said, while English is often the first language of business, it is not always the first language for employees. In fact, less than 10% of the world’s population are native English speakers.

Importantly, we know that people interact better with content produced in their mother tongue, so communicating with employees in their own language takes on new significance. Adopting a multilingual strategy in your HR processes is a way of proving to your employees that you value them.

There are multiple benefits to a multilingual HR communications strategy that includes translating relevant documentation.


Global clarity and alignment

One of the most important points in employee communication is ensuring a cohesive and consistent message is being conveyed. In addition to helping you remove language barriers and avoid miscommunication, translating your HR materials will also ensure that all employees receive the same messaging communications wherever they are in the world.

Whether rolling out a well-being program or sharing company objectives, HR translation will help you to ensure all employees are up to speed and have a clear understanding of what is being communicated to them.


Higher employee engagement

How better to keep your workforce engaged and motivated than to provide company information and training courses in their language of choice.

Talking to your employees in their native languages helps your global workforce feel connected and buy into your culture. Engaged employees bring many benefits to your company, not least communicating their experience of your brand to their personal, social and professional circles.


Increased retention

It is widely acknowledged that training and development contribute to overall job satisfaction and reduce staff turnover rates. What is less widely discussed is the importance of translation in this process. Accepting that people engage better with content in their own language, recruitment and training processes that take place in languages other than English will help non-native speakers to absorb and process the information more easily.


We can help

For three decades, we have supported HR teams in communicating effectively with their employees to achieve their results, in every corner of the globe. If you have identified with any of the challenges we’ve discussed in this article, please get in touch.