Augment Translators with AI: A LocWorld Recap

by Drew Evans
4 Minute Read

Alessandra Binazzi has seen what strong localization programs can accomplish and knows what it takes to get there. After all, as the Head of Global Localization at ASICS Digital, she understands how to grow a global brand and expand into new locales and regions. 

Recently, Binazzi sat down with Lilt’s Co-founder and Chief Scientist John DeNero at LocWorldWide42, the newest chapter in LocWorld’s conference series. This year’s virtual conference focused on engaging global users and the importance of the user’s experience. 


Moving Beyond Acceptable Quality

To kickoff the conversation, DeNero talked about the current landscape of machine translation and localization, what it’s missing, and how it’s evolving for the future. And while machine translation has come a long way, its raw output still leaves room for error. 

That’s why many companies turn to Machine Translation Post-Editing (MTPE), but while a human linguist is now involved in the process, there are still quality issues. The linguist is only fixing what is already broken and, as a result, the translation sounds like the original machine translation. Ultimately, companies aren’t looking for acceptable quality. They’re certainly not looking for delayed projects due to those quality issues. 

The human-in-the-loop machine translation system, on the other hand, actually improves over time with each translated word. The linguist accepts or rejects a suggestion, which trains the system and improves its accuracy. The outcome of this process is increased translator efficiency (not having to fix the same mistakes over and over) and higher translation quality over time.


Human-in-the-Loop: In Action

Binazzi saw the results firsthand when she decided to bring Lilt onboard to help with ASICS Digital’s localization efforts. The digital ecosystem, in charge of e-commerce, fitness applications, global digital marketing, and more, was spending too much time translating product descriptions. 

To continue growth, ASICS aimed to add two new locales: Polish and Portuguese. To get these languages up to speed, they needed to localize four seasons worth of product descriptions, or about 4x the normal amount of content. For a traditional localization process, that wouldn’t be possible - they were already lagging on copy, so how could they quadruple the normal output?

Instead, they decided to partner with Lilt, and the results were immediately clear: a 70% cost savings, a 60% improvement in turnaround time speed, all while maintaining the same quality as the human translators


Looking Towards Innovation

The team at ASICS Digital is still working towards the future and is making sure that they don’t remain complacent. They’re looking to continue optimizing processes internally so they can focus on improved response times and smoother product launches, and turning to more automation and innovation so they don’t have to worry about the little things. 

“Lilt checked a very important innovation checkbox for us, and we’re very proud of that,” Binazzi said. “We want to continue to innovate, and we look to Lilt to provide more of those solutions in the future.”

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If you want to watch the full panel from LocWorldWide42, check out the discussion on our YouTube channel here. Want higher quality, consistency, and deliver speeds? Augment your translators with an adaptive, human-in-the-loop localization workflow by requesting a demo today.