Quality Assurance: Halifax is certified for the EN15038 European standard for translation service management, and for ISO9001 quality management system.
Certifications require an initial audit to ensure that all required systems are in place, with further audits at regular intervals to ensure that not only are the systems in use, but are continuously being improved upon. Halifax is audited by Bureau Veritas, one of the largest international certification companies.
EN 15038 / ISO17100
Compliance with this standard involves a systematic approach to service provision (as with ISO 9001), with continuous improvement mechanisms. It requires regular audits by a certification body. There are also provisions specific to translation such as the choice and testing of translators and the combination of services that ensure a good translation.
For example, a translation conforming to EN15038 is performed by two independent translators. One performs the initial translation while another revises the text, comparing source and target languages for meaning, style, grammar and other aspects. However good a single translator may be, once an error has crept in it may be impossible for the same person to see it – a second pair of eyes exposes mistakes. This also allows a more nuanced treatment of the many different ways in which a single text can be translated. Translator and reviser can discuss the possibilities and agree on the optimal solution for the text in question depending on the client and the intended reading audience.
Certification for ISO 9001 is based on quality management principles such as customer focus, leadership, involvement of people, process approach, system approach to management, continual improvement, factual approach to decision making and mutually beneficial supplier relationships. Using ISO 9001 helps ensure that customers receive consistent, good quality products and services.
EN 15038 is a quality standard developed especially for translation services providers to ensure the consistent quality of their services. It was published in 2006 by CEN, the European Committee for Standardisation (www.cen.eu). This standard is generally accepted as a benchmark. It is being replaced by ISO 17100, and certified companies must make the transition to the ISO standard when their certificates expire.
You can read more on Wikipedia, which has a comprehensive description.
The ISO 9000 series of standards deals with quality management systems. It helps organizations ensure that they meet the needs of customers and other stakeholders, while meeting statutory and regulatory requirements related to the product. ISO 9001 deals with the requirements that organizations wishing to meet the standard have to fulfil.
See more at www.iso.org