Interpreting is a key service in this globalized business world, where one can happen to talk on the same day, or even at the same time, with people of broadly diverse origins and languages. But what interpreting modes and services can an agency provide?

Many different interpreting services exist in order to satisfy all possible needs. A good interpreter agency should be able to rely on skilled professional interpreters, fluent in the languages offered for interpreting, as well as to provide such services based on its customers’ actual needs.

From simultaneous interpreting in a booth – the most classical interpreting mode – to new services, such as phone interpreting – a new solution developed for brief preliminary interviews from all parts of the world – SB can provide the broadest variety of interpreting services. Read on for more information!
Perhaps the best known interpreting service, it consists in translating while sitting in a booth. The interpreter listens to the speakers talking in their own language in headphones and, at the same time, translates into a microphone to deliver the message to the participants in their headphones in their own language. Simultaneous interpreting is a complex, demanding activity (the interpreter, or simultaneous translator, needs to listen, understand, translate, and talk at the same time without ever losing track of the original speech) and calls for high professional skills. International association rules provide for engaging one simultaneous translator for a maximum of 60 minutes, two for a maximum of 7 hours. An additional interpreter is required for longer assignments. The Simultaneous Interpreting service is provided using Simultaneous Translation Systems.

In this type of interpreting no technological instruments are required except an ordinary audio amplification system. The interpreter sits beside the speaker, listens to his/her speech and, after each phrase, while the speaker pauses, translates what he/she said to the audience. There is no need for the kind of technical equipment used in simultaneous interpreting, which makes consecutive interpreting significantly cheaper. On the other hand, it doubles the duration of the meeting (each phrase is said twice, first by the speaker, then by the interpreter translating it) and therefore no single interpreter can translate continuously for more than 4 hours. For longer assignments, an additional interpreter is required.

Chuchotage (whispering) is a term indicating that the interpreter “whispers” the translation of the speaker’s words almost simultaneously in the ear of the listener(s) (maximum two or three). If the listener needs to answer a question, the interpreter translates consecutively for the audience. This is a very demanding interpreting mode, and a chuchotage interpreter can translate continuously for a maximum of only two hours. For longer assignments, an additional interpreter is required.

Group interpreting is a kind of hybrid service, half-way between chuchotage and simplified simultaneous interpreting. The interpreter standing beside the speaker listens and translates his/her speech simultaneously, speaking into a radio-microphone set to the same frequency as the listeners’ receivers. This approach is indicated for brief restricted meetings held in locations that are not suited to accommodate a traditional simultaneous interpreting system for technical or space-related reasons. The interpreter’s working time is the same as for chuchotage.

Interpreting for business discussions is probably the toughest part of an interpreter’s work. It takes place under special circumstances, often at lunch or at dinner, usually in the one-to-one mode, and requires a professional translator capable – obviously – to understand and convey each concept in the language of the listener, as well as to perceive even the subtlest cultural nuances that can make a huge difference in a negotiation. For this type of service, the interpreter can be engaged on a half-day or a full-day basis.

Phone-based interpreting is the new service that allows anyone, based anywhere, to rely on a professional interpreter to communicate with counterparts speaking a different language. Very simple and convenient, this type of interpreting only requires a phone to allow two or more counterparts to knock down all language barriers. It

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