SDL Trados Studio 2019 from an LSP perspective
February 12, 2019

SDL Trados Studio 2019 from an LSP perspective

Brad Orfall | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Overall Satisfaction with SDL Trados Studio

Inline is a small LSP that uses SDL Trados Studio 2019 to complete translations into a wide variety of languages for Fortune 500 clients worldwide. The vast majority of the usage is in Spanish for the Domestic US market. The software has dramatically increased our margins, simplified our workflows, and resulted in savings for our clients. The software is powerful and full-featured, although there is a steep learning curve that makes it difficult for new users to get up to speed.
  • The software has an extensive suite of file types that it supports, making working with most client requests relatively painless.
  • The translation workspace is easy to use, although it is very intimidating to new users. Once people get used to and understand what's available, they make great use of its features.
  • The translation memories and management tools allow for efficient use of the translation resources available, and the filters, sorting, and prioritization routines make it easy to pick the correct content from a variety of sources.
  • The software is incredibly complex and perhaps could benefit from a basic vs. enhanced view, where novice users get one view, while experienced users get the full experience and all of the options.
  • The error messages provided don't mean anything and don't explain what to do. Searching online is usually required to figure out what should be done to eliminate the issue. Why not tell people directly what is wrong?
  • The alignment tool was recently updated in 2019 SR1, but it is buggy. I had a hard time aligning files that were easily handled in the prior version of the software. In general, the update is a great improvement in functionality, but it kept giving meaningless error messages that lead nowhere in online searches. I finally found information that the errors were just a bug and to ignore them. While that worked, bugs made it hard to complete the task without crashes.
  • We managed to speed delivery of certain translation and layout projects by several days at times, all while decreasing the out-of-pocket costs, improving our margins, and delivering savings to our clients.
  • We specifically chose a more limited version of the software due to the fact that ROI would be more difficult with more capable versions with vastly more expensive cost models.
  • More work now takes place in-house, and our contractor expense for translators has decreased significantly.
We have tried a variety of other CAT software at times. The problem is that few have the market penetration or critical mass of users that SDL Trados does. It's not that the software is the best out there, it's long term stability and the number of users that is more important. We need to be compatible with our suppliers, so the choice is made on that basis.
SDL Trados Studio is extremely well suited for expert CAT tool users. More novice users will have trouble getting up to speed. I have an office full of employees that constantly ask questions on how to do specific tasks, mainly because the task sequence is not obvious and is only uncovered by rote repetition of the same things. If you learn and apply the same techniques repeatedly, it becomes easier, but it seems the software was designed by software people, sometimes with little thought to the end users who have to figure it out. I don't know that professional training should be so necessary.