Is Working Remotely Your New Normal?

XTRF Academy

With global lockdown, remote work has become a necessity for many businesses. We hope this is temporary, but working away from the office and its support systems now require a big transition in how we operate in our daily business life. The good news is that for language professionals and project managers, this transition can be seamless with XTRF’s cloud-based platform. 

XTRF was designed to help you manage your translation and localization business from anywhere 

In the localization world, managing vendors remotely has been the norm for years. Companies seldom rely on in-house linguists handling language production tasks and remoteness has been an advantage, as projects encompass multiple languages and cultures. But what remains a challenge is managing the multitude of events and people involved in language production. 

Vendor management lies in the heart of XTRF. When XTRF was still just an idea in our heads, we knew that it had to be an application with interfaces available for a variety of roles – clients, project managers, finance and vendors. This idea became our focus in creating a unified experience for our users and customers that would resemble working in a shared space. 

But there has always been a significant difference: the requirement to limit access to relevant aspects of the process for each kind of user. Having this in mind, XTRF was set up in a way that allows it to be a cloud application and a hosted service – positioning it uniquely in the new reality of remote work. 

Connected management at all levels – anywhere, anytime 

With your XTRF account, users at every level can keep your business running, regardless of location. For example, a localization manager can log in at home or from a conference on the other side of the world, open a project, create a quote, manage vendors, send invoices, and review each step of the process. Sales and account management can communicate with prospects and existing customers, creating jobs and resolving issues. And senior management can view reports, including project flow, receivables and payables, and other top-level views into the daily operations of the business. 

No special configuration requirements 

Regardless of your team’s location, their XTRF configuration remains the same – meaning they can access the system and manage projects from anywhere, the same way they would under 

normal circumstances. The only difference is where they access the application. When planning a remote workforce, we do recommend considering giving your remote employees a secure VPN or other more secure access points they can use while traveling or working in public places like cafes. We do not recommend using open, unsecured networks in these circumstances. Beyond these considerations, any translation and localization business or team using XTRF should be able to seamlessly transition to a remote workforce. 

The human factor: adjusting to working out of the office 

Moving to a remote work environment can cause friction in your team. It is important to provide guidance, including helping employees set up systems and home offices, putting in place communications channels like Slack or Skype, and providing some kind of work tracking system if your organization requires one. XTRF’s extensive reporting capabilities offer the ability to build custom reports to track various actions. Perhaps most importantly, XTRF will always look the same for users, wherever they access it from. This means they have a familiar work environment no different than what they would see in the office. They can log in and pick up where they left off, regardless of location. 

Onboarding new remote employees and vendors 

Training new people when an office environment is not available can be a challenge. XTRF Academy was designed to help onboard new users and to help experienced users improve their XTRF skills. It is always available and offers self-directed training via videos and other instructional tools. And now, in the times of lockdown, we’re ​offering it for free​. Because XTRF is an integrated application for the entire translation workflow, it makes it easy to get vendors up and running in your processes, regardless of their location. Your customers can also access tutorials to guide them through project creation, quoting, and process tracking. 

In the new normal, XTRF offers a competitive advantage, including improved customer retention and new business 

When you make your customer’s lives easier, especially in a crisis, it changes the relationship. Existing customers will be more loyal and new customers will demand solutions that automate every translation and localization interaction, on a single platform. The fact that your customers can access their accounts, order projects, and manage invoices, from their home office, offers you a competitive advantage over LSPs without integrated solutions. 

We hope this ‘new normal’ will be over soon and life can go back to ways we are familiar with; however, remote working is the way of the future, and it will be a growing factor for any business. For language businesses, XTRF positions you now for this new global reality.