The new face of the language industry after the storm
What will the world look like after the pandemic?
Will life go back to the way it was before, or will a different kind of reality await us?
What major changes will we need to face?
The COVID-19 emergency has catapulted the world into a surreal situation, in political, economic and social terms. For the first time in modern history, humanity has found itself having to face an invisible and impalpable enemy that has turned our way of conceiving and living reality upside down.
In the midst of such a profound crisis, it is difficult to provide answers and impossible to achieve certainty.
However, we believe reflection on our industry — multilingual communication — is in order, as is a discussion with colleagues from all over the world, in an attempt to gauge overall sentiment and define our own.
To be prepared for the future, and to flag a reference point that can help us navigate this historic moment, both as a language industry company and as a Benefit Corporation.
From the industry’s webinars to the virtual talk shows we’ve followed during lockdown, one clear, undeniable truth emerges: the importance of multilingual communication in response to the needs of a globalized world. Today, even more with everyone confined to their own homes, the power of words and communication in transcending all barriers is of inestimable value.
Lockdown has had a devastating impact on some industries such as tourism, yet international communication has actually intensified and become even more necessary at this time of crisis. Rightly considered to be an “essential activity” by the Italian Government, communication also includes translation, as a factor enabling inter-linguistic and inter-cultural communication, which in the COVID-19 emergency often helps to save lives.
It goes without saying that the language industry is permeated by technologies like no other. Localization consists of 80% of IT and is driven by continuous development of neural networks and Artificial Intelligence. It is one of the most digitalized markets in the world and by virtue of its level of maturity, it is adaptable and resilient in the face of this crisis.
At Way2Global, smart working, process automation and digital communication are acquired realities and good practices which have been implemented for a number of years now. Thanks to early adoption of digital technologies as a result of the fourth industrial revolution, today we can collaborate with linguists from all over the world, using cloud platforms to share processes and resources with professionals and to interact with clients.
Therefore it comes as no surprise that in the face of COVID-19, we have moved fast to activate all our digital communication channels and have continued to engage in distance work since the start of the pandemic.
This is why, in spite of a global crisis in which all certainty has crumbled, we remain positive. Beyond the clouds looming on the horizon, we see a bright future, guided by change.
“Tough times await us, but people are inventing new things, they’re seeking out new markets, experimenting and taking steps: This is why the future will be positive. All crises bring opportunity, in Chinese it is written in two characters: one means opportunity and the other danger.”
Marco Trombetti, CEO of Translated
The aftermath will be a chaotic moment, but equally rich in expectation. What will this mean for the language industry?
Undoubtedly, just as in numerous other industries, working from home has proven to be a winning model, one that is destined to boost trust in technology. This will probably be coupled with increasingly rapid development of automation, for enhanced speed, fluidity and security.
Viewed from such a perspective, crisis becomes a detonator that speeds up and digitizes automation processes. However, the entire community must cooperate to create new business models; all stakeholders need to be involved and empowered. Only then will the crisis become a positive lever for change and generate a new concept of work, economy and the future.
At Way2Global we have always aspired toward this scenario. We see technological development and the dawn of artificial intelligence as the extension of human capabilities. In our vision as a Benefit Corporation, digitization is strategic leverage for affirming new business models, innovative industrial policies and a new work ethic. Our company culture has always used Industry 4.0 as a driver of change, development and social innovation.
To the same effect, as a Benefit Corporation we want to believe that this crisis will accelerate change toward a new concept of capitalism; a sustainable and regenerative economy, focused not only on profit, but also and above all on creating values for people and the planet.
“As a communicator I am convinced that to awaken the mind, speaking loudly is not nearly as important as speaking about strong content. This virus is an invisible, silent enemy, yet it has sent us a devastatingly powerful message. It’s up to us to pick up on it, interpret it and above all decide how to react in response to this desperate call. At Way2Global we chose to behave differently long before COVID-19, embracing Sustainability as our mission. The difference is that now we’ll be increasingly less unusual and increasingly more the norm.”
Martina Pianezzola, Marketing & Communication at Way2Global
We have all learnt so much from these months of seclusion, fear, dramatic human and economic loss. It has been a significant lesson of collective life; we are ready to restart in the right way, in a better and different way. A reality in which collaboration supplants competition, so that we can be guided by values rather than greed. A new, fair and sustainable world, where respect for the planet and its forms of life becomes the basis for harmonious economic development that brings common good.
“The dawn of a new, human-scale economy is the guiding purpose of our mission as a Benefit Corporation. We must all work together to help rebuild a new, more sustainable normality. One that excludes no one. Because no one can save themselves, by themselves.”
Laura Gori, Founder & CEO of Way2Global