The US-based language service agency Alboum Translation Services implemented Plunet back in 2011. Over the last ten years, the company has grown significantly and quadrupled the number of Plunet user licenses. We wanted to know how Alboum managed their business growth, how the last year affected their work and their focus on nonprofits, and what they plan for the future. Chief Marketing Officer Hillary Berman has the answers.
The last year has been quite rocky and the Corona crisis has affected the stakeholders of the translation industry differently. How has the last year been for you with regard to your everyday work with nonprofits?
We are grateful that we not only survived the COVID-19 pandemic, but also thrived. As the two main sectors that Alboum serves are public schools and public health organizations, we were very busy! We translated documents such as school closure announcements, availability of COVID testing and food distribution sites, and remote learning materials, in addition to our clients’ more typical projects. We also pivoted quickly to move all of our interpretation services online, and put systems in place to meet the increased demand.
Have you gained new work related insights due to the crisis and its effects on your company?
Yes! Plunet enabled us to scale our client-facing operations to keep up with demand. We definitely learned the importance of implementing efficient systems behind the scenes to ensure our administrative processes keep pace as well.
Which role did Plunet play in the last year regarding your management of the crisis?
As our team worked overtime to support clients’ urgent needs, Plunet helped us keep on top of all of our projects. With clients in multiple time zones and the evolving nature of the situation, we often had team members covering for one another. Plunet allowed those covering to keep account managers in the loop on their clients’ projects, even if another team member initially facilitated the request.
Why did you decide to choose Plunet in the first place and have the application areas of the business and translation management system changed over the years?
We were looking for a system that could grow with us as our company expanded. We started out simply tracking projects and invoicing. Over the years, we have implemented additional modules as our business needs evolved and added users as our team has grown. For example, we now take advantage of the Properties feature to categorize contacts and report on business trends by industry and lead source.
What effect has Plunet had on your business from 2011 until now?
While Plunet is not directly responsible for our growth, it provided the backbone to keep our projects organized as we have grown.
Which additional modules are you using and for which purposes?
QualityManager: We rolled this out in the past couple of months and are already really excited about the ability to capture feedback in an organized way. When we were smaller and worked with fewer account managers and translators, it was easy to keep project successes and feedback fresh in our heads or share via internal messaging. With QualityManager we can organize this information so that it’s available and accessible to any member of the team when they need it.
InterpretingManager: As the interpretation side of our business has grown, this module has allowed us to quote and track interpretations in a comprehensive way, covering all of the elements needed, including equipment for when we’re actually together again!
Do you have a favorite Plunet feature and if so, which one?
We are eagerly awaiting the rollout of the Plunet QuickBooks online integration. As soon as it is available, we plan to use it to streamline our invoicing and accounts receivable.
Which long-term goals do you want to achieve with Plunet?
We’d love to see Plunet roll out e-mail automation. We currently integrate some of our Plunet processes with an e-mail marketing platform to engage with clients, but would love to have it all in one application.
About Alboum Translation Services
Founded in 2001, Alboum Translation Services is a certified woman-owned business based in Arlington, Virginia. The agency exclusively serves nonprofit and mission-driven organizations and provides both translation and interpretation.