In the translation industry, BeLazy is synonymous with supply chain automation. We find ourselves in a very lucky spot: we do not only offer something unique but also something that affects most people in the world of translation and localization. In this post we try to gather the types of jobs that have an interest in using supply chain automation, summarizing why and how supply chain automation, and thus BeLazy is helping their work. Actually, every person who deals with buying or selling services finds value in such automation.
#1: The enterprise buyer
Even if it exists in several companies, “vendor manager” is not a typical enterprise job title. Most companies buy translation from a limited set of language service providers and sometimes also translators. Whenever we address enterprise customers and talk about continuous localization, it is important to understand that continuous localization is not a reality for the vast majority of these companies, but rather a goal they are trying to achieve. The continuous localization promise is an always up-to-date, connected and lean localization.
Typically, there are two of issues that affect enterprise buyers:
#2: The LSP account or program manager
No matter if the LSP is working for an end customer or a multilanguage vendor, the account manager has an interest in introducing supply chain automation, exactly because of the reasons above. Supply chain automation improves turnaround times, which helps drive more revenue as customers choose you over other vendors, and increases your profitability as you save on the fixed employee (PM) costs attributed to each and every project.
As a matter of fact, some of our customers have reported that they managed to turn around projects. Automation helped them to bring back profit on projects that were causing them a loss and which they were considering to stop working on.
As an account manager, you don’t have to fully automate everything if you don’t feel comfortable that way. You can still incorporate your quality check or other manual steps. Supply chain automation is only automating what you are willing to automate, and you should not cut out what adds value.
#3: The LSP vendor manager
Generally speaking, project managers find it frustrating having to wait hours for vendors to approve and take a translation job. In an ideal world, they would like to see vendor availability and willingness to work the very moment they offer the job, especially if it is small, regular and urgent. While this is not yet possible, supply chain automation minimizes the waiting time. Vendor managers can agree with vendors who are using supply chain automation to set up auto-approval rules and email-based automated synchronization. If configured correctly, new jobs can be accepted as quickly as within a minute, even when nobody is in the office. It is in the interest of the vendor manager to get their vendors up and running with supply chain automation.
According to the measurements made by several top 20-LPSs, vendors work best within certain work ranges. If the amount of work they subcontract increases beyond the limits of this range, delivery failures increase exponentially. For this reason, gearing up a vendor is always a challenge! Not only their project management, but also their vendor management needs to be improved. Vendors who apply automation gear up better as they have more time for meaningful work. If a vendor is already applying automation to their workflows, we suggest that you start to increase their workload between 10-25% and measure the delivery results.
#4: The translator
In our current offering there is nothing – yet – for translators and reviewers, but in our view, there are important reasons why a translator should be interested in more automation.
What can automation do for them?
#5: The financial controller
Colleagues doing financial control usually have to double-check all data entry versus the customers’ data. If automation brings in the customers’ data into your own systems, the chance of mistyping a number in the project identifier or the project sum is drastically reduced. This speeds up the financial team’s work, as they don’t have to manually check for human errors.
#6: The IT manager
The majority of the people who get in touch with us have some IT background, often they are the IT managers in the company they work for. Automation has traditionally been an IT task, however, we believe that automation capability is proof of a well-working process. IT managers can use publicly available supply chain automation functionality – i.e. BeLazy – to reduce the number of scripts and bespoke solutions running at their premises, decrease maintenance costs and benefit from the infrastructure that a solid provider gives. For an IT manager using technology like BeLazy is similar to moving from internal scripting to a real cloud solution — with the same kind of benefits.
#7: The Project Manager
We have intentionally placed the project manager at the end of this list, given they are the only ones who need to make a significant change to the way they work. Based on our experience, project managers have a fear of losing control over the projects they are responsible for, which makes sense. Our findings show, however, that gradual deployment of automation helps project managers transition better. They need to be actively involved in identifying how automation can help them, what automation steps they are comfortable with and which are those they are not (and why). Addressing all these questions make project managers understand what an important part they play and how much added value they can offer to the company. We have found that project managers who take the plunge:
Can you think about other personas that might benefit from using supply chain automation? We are all ears. If you’re interested in putting this into practice: