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A New Role at Argos: Vendor Quality Specialist

Because of our rapid growth over the past year, Argos Multilingual has decided to create the role of Vendor Quality Specialist. We’re proud to say that the first individual to take on this role and its responsibilities is Dariusz Obłąk, who will be tasked with facilitating quality-related communication with our vendors and supporting our linguists in the process of catching up with the technical advancements our Linguistic Quality and Innovation (LIQUID) team is developing. We interviewed Dariusz to get his thoughts on the new role and learn a little more about what he’ll be doing on a day-to-day basis.

What is your story with Argos so far?

Dariusz Obłąk: I started in the Linguistic Quality and Innovation (LIQUID) team as a Linguistic Specialist for life sciences accounts, then shifted to freelance cooperation to find time for other linguistic projects. Now I’m back full-time in the internal team as a Vendor Quality Specialist while still being involved in my previous language leading initiatives.

What will you be doing in your new role?

DO: I’ll take care of linguistic quality follow-ups with vendors, onboardings, and certifications. That will involve working closely with our Quality Data Analyst to monitor quality trends and identify training needs among vendors in collaboration with Training Specialists. Furthermore, I’ll support the migration of LQA to a dedicated tool that will include training and user support, while also taking charge of the linguistic aspects of the LQA process. Finally, I would like to bring various developments in Argos-owned tools to the attention of our vendors while providing regular communication on behalf of the department, and integrate the approach to vendor linguistic quality together with the Vendor Management team.

Can you tell us a bit about linguistic follow-ups? What kind of situations typically generate them?

DO: Linguistic follow-ups result most frequently from client feedback or internal quality data analysis. In order to find the root cause of a given issue and undertake preventive actions, a linguistic analysis is brought into play and all its aspects are discussed with the vendors before we come up with a final solution. It might happen that a linguistic discussion is initiated during the final verification stage and a follow-up might also be necessary. The aim is to find the most suitable solution and prevent quality issues from occurring or re-occurring. There might be issues related to terminology and vendors struggling with number of glossaries required, QA checks and a need to amend them to reflect inflexion, process-related knowledge requiring insight into other languages of a given project, or a host of other possibilities.

Why was this role created?

DO: To detect training needs, share process and language related knowledge via a centralized point of contact, provide feedback on linguistic performance, to discuss successes and challenges, and to improve linguistic quality among vendors. The vendors are fundamental to the success of localization, so feedback management can help individuals feel valued and remind them that we’re all working toward shared goals.

How do you think having a dedicated Vendor Quality Specialist can facilitate our collaboration with vendors?

DO: Interacting and collaborating with end-suppliers will help by changing the perspective from project-based linguistic quality to a broader view that reflects both positive and negative aspects. With that in mind, any action to improve linguistic quality can help vendors provide higher-quality work. Adding a human touch to the linguistic quality process might help make people more aware that linguistic quality is not only about numbers, but also about people.

What do you think will be the most challenging and rewarding aspects of your new role?

DO: I guess they come in pairs, as big challenges give the best rewards. The first challenge on my list is supporting LQA migration to a dedicated tool, as I understand that getting familiar with a new tool might be a bit overwhelming to our vendors at the very beginning. The second one will be working as a quality liaison for new suppliers. I believe that investing time in training and support for new suppliers and doing things right the first time will undoubtedly translate into better linguistic quality.

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