There is a lot of preparation involved for interpreters who do conference calls. Adequate preparation includes a few different techniques, which will be discussed in this blog post. It is important to know that interpreters cannot simply get on the phone at the time of the conference call and expect to interpret accurately and smoothly.
It is also not recommended that you simply get someone, randomly, who speaks both languages and ask them to interpret for you.
For any formal setting you must seek out an unbiased, professional interpreter who understands the difference between speaking in the first person and the third person. Who knows when a consecutive or simultaneous interpretation is required and when to gently, and off the record, ask the parties to [slow down] speak in short, precise sentences so that interpretation can be done as accurately as possible.
Telephonic Interpreting for Insurance Investigators
Often insurance companies require immediate assistance on the phone with a non-English speaking party whether they are the insured, claimant, witness or client. The call may involve any type of insurance claim, from an auto accident, slip and fall, homeowner’s policy or a Worker’s Compensation claim.
In all the above cases there are specialized terms in the language pairs requested that the interpreter must have mastered in order to make sure the interpretation as is precise and smooth as possible.
In order to develop a proficient vocabulary to do the job, the interpreter is given study material encompassing auto, truck, motorcycle and bicycle parts and an extensive glossary of the parts of the human body and any illnesses or conditions a person may be asked about when a medical history is taken. A general knowledge of the names of industrial mechanics and tools must also be known.
And lastly, it is not only fluency and vocabulary of great importance but also clarity of the speaking voice. An attempt is always made to make sure the interpreters speak without a marked accent and use conventionally accepted English.
If Possible Give Interpreters Relevant Documentation
Interpreters should be given any pamphlets, programs, websites, emails, or any other documentation well in advance. Many conference calls involve specific terminology, for example, that an interpreter will want to become familiarized with prior to engaging in the conference call. If applicable, interpreters should be given a copy of any speeches or presentations that will occur during the conference call. Familiarity with the content of the conference call agenda will greatly help the interpreter to proceed quickly and accurately.
Provide an Optimal Work Environment
Many Spanish conference call interpreters work in-house at interpreting agencies, as Spanish conference calls are very common. In these cases, it is the agency that has control of the environment in which the interpreter works. It is best to provide interpreters with a quiet, distraction-free work space as well as a comfortable chair, a high quality hands-free headset so they don’t have to hold the phone, and a reliable phone line that will ensure clear transmission of the call.