Translation, Terminology and Interpretation

A. Key services

We can help you meet your various language-related needs 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We translate ultra-specialized reports, extremely sensitive documents and tweets, and we revise translations. We also provide other services, such as conference interpretation, language advice and the development of glossaries specific to your organization.

Translation and Other Language Services

  • Translation services in both official languages, in Canada's Aboriginal languages and in over 100 foreign languages PRIORITY SERVICE!
  • Revision services, including professional evaluation and quality assurance
  • Personalized services: translators on site, in your offices.
  • Translation in highly specialized fields: economics, law, environmental sciences, medicine, biology, engineering (civil, electrical, mechanical and industrial), IT, technology, social sciences and the humanities
  • Secure handling of protected and classified documents
  • Guarantee of quality and satisfaction with the service provided
  • Network of language professionals across Canada

Terminology Services

  • Standardization and dissemination of terminology in various public service fields and integration of this terminology in TERMIUM Plus®, the Government of Canada's terminology and linguistic data bank
  • Development of customized glossaries and vocabularies, and revision of glossaries and vocabularies produced by client departments and agencies
  • Development and dissemination of products that improve the quality of communications in both official languages:
    • Language Portal of Canada, the first national website that showcases Canadian expertise in the language field
    • Linguistic Recommendations and Reminders
    • Bilingual and multilingual glossaries and vocabularies (all offered free of charge)
    • Writing tools
  • Answers to your terminology and linguistic questions
  • Participation in the work of terminology committees


  • Interpretation services in official languages, in Canada's Aboriginal languages and in foreign languages at various events: intra- or inter-departmental conferences, federal-provincial-territorial minister's meetings, international summits, and bilateral or multilateral talks between heads of state or governments.
  • Interpretation services in American Sign Language (ASL) and in Langue des signes qubcoise (LSQ)
  • English and French lip-reading interpretation and deaf-blind tactile interpretation.

Client Contact Centre Services

Client Relationship Management

  • Effective engagement
  • Reliable communications
  • Monitoring client satisfaction
  • Issues management
  • Strategic planning and service agreements
  • Program oversight

B. Featured Initiatives

We are transforming and creating new services to better meet our clients needs and provide the best value for money. We are always on the lookout for new trends in language technologies to help our clients meet their official languages obligations in an ever-changing environment. On The Go!

The Government of Canada's first language-related mobile app

Developed by the Translation Bureau, this mobile app gives you access to TERMIUM Plus®, the Government of Canada's terminology and linguistic data bank.

TERMIUM Plus® is the flagship product of the Language Portal of Canada, a showcase for Canadian expertise in the area of language and a one-stop shop for information on language and writing, language games, writing tools and a host of other resources on various aspects of English and French.


  • Quickly find the English and French equivalent of a wide range of terms in various fields.
  • Download it free of charge on your iPhone® or BlackBerry® and access it on all smart phone platforms on the Web.

Translation Bureau's Transformation

Transformation initiative seeking to modernize the Bureau and create a solid foundation for the future.


  • Four pillars of efficiency.
    • Procurement reform.
    • Consolidation of office space and expansion of telework.
    • Development and adoption of translation-related technologies.
    • Simplification of administrative processes.
  • Improved client experience.
    • Standardized quality standards throughout the GC.
    • Reduced turn around times.
      • Improved efficiency through use of technolinguistic tools and process automation.
    • Simplified On-line Ordering System.
    • Improved secure infrastructure.
    • Simplified pricing.

C. What's coming

The Bureau is developing a new service management concept across the organization to expand its current role as a centre of excellence in translation by offering a full service management option to departments and agencies that are prepared to obtain all their translation services needs from one common centre.

D. Ensuring value for money

A new pricing strategy to simplify our processes

The Translation Bureau is taking another step toward attaining its objective of becoming a more nimble organization. It is offering client departments a simpler and more transparent rate schedule, one that aims to respond to our clients' requests, streamline internal processes and increase efficiencies.

  • One single rate for official languages translation: This single rate will make it easier to process general and specialized texts because we will no longer have to determine the applicable rate.
  • A 60-minute minimum billing charge: As a result, the Bureau can expect to reduce its administrative costs.
  • An hourly rate for multilingual services: Reduce overhead by simplifying the billing process.

Why choose the Translation Bureau?

  • Our services are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week (24/7).
  • The utmost confidentiality when processing your protected and classified documents: the Bureau has custom-built secure rooms for just this purpose.
    You can even send these documents electronically!
  • A Canada-wide network of language experts in specialized fields. For example, do you need help in:
    • Economics and law
    • Environmental science and biology
    • Industrial engineering
    • IT
    • Civil, electrical and mechanical engineering
    • Medicine and technology
    • Humanities
  • One of the biggest term banks in the world: over four million terms. Created and kept up to date by our team of terminologists, TERMIUM Plus® is a large reservoir of corporate memory that helps in the standardization of terminology within the Government of Canada.
  • 100% quality guarantee: if you are not fully satisfied, we will re-do the work at no cost to you.
  • Peace of mind: Because you know that the best language experts will be meeting your needs.

Tips to keep your translation costs down

  • Plan your translation ahead of time: A 35% rush premium applies when the request deadline is less than 24 hours or when service delivery requires work
    outside of regular office hours.
  • Bundle your short requests since the minimum period for paid services is 1 hour
  • Even if your request is out of the ordinary, all you have to do is provide your special instructions. For example:
    • Sometimes all you need is a summary.
    • We can also translate your document orally, by telephone or in person.
    • We can even customize your message for specific audiences.

E. Service Standards, Results and Targets

We have exceeded all 7 targets for translation, terminology and interpretation services! Staff dedicated to client service and excellent collaboration with clients, accessible services, our close follow-up on all requests and ongoing innovation are among the factors contributing to this result.

Table Summary

The Table on Service Standards, Results and Targets for the Translation, Terminology, and Interpretation service category shows service targets and results for 2013-2014, and service targets for 2014-2015 for the following services: Translation and other linguistic services; Terminology standardization services; Interpretation; Client Contact Centre services; Client relationship management. The table also indicates if the results are available by client in 2013-2014.

Translation, Terminology and Interpretation Target
Available by Client Target
Translation and Linguistic Services
Meet the agreed-upon delivery deadline of each project as defined in the service requests. 95%Indicates that the target has increased or the result has improved from the previous year 96% 95%
Terminology Standardization Services
Respond to terminology queries and requests within one business day. 95% 99%   95%
Post terminological fiches in TERMIUM Plus® without errors (i.e. in compliance with standards and methodological procedures in use at the Translation Bureau). Footnote * 95% 96%Indicates that the target was met or surpassed   95%
Provide interpretation services for all requests that qualify under the Translation Bureau's mandate. Footnote ** 95% 98%Indicates that the target was met or surpassed   95%
Client Contact Centre Services
During business hours, acknowledge receipt of emails received in the Translation Bureau's inbox and return missed calls (voicemail messages) before close of business (5:00 p.m. EST). 95% 99%Indicates that the target was met or surpassed   95%
Client Relationship Management
Acknowledge clients' inquiries within one business day. 95% 97%Indicates that the target was met or surpassed 95%
Respond to clients' inquiries within three business days. 95% 98%Indicates that the target was met or surpassed 95%

Indicates that the target was met or surpassedIndicates that the target was met or surpassed.
Indicates that the target has increased or the result has improved from the previous yearIndicates that the target has increased or the result has improved from the previous year.


Footnote *

Previous wording: Disseminate records in TERMIUM Plus® that are consistent with the quality standards in effect at the Translation Bureau.

Return to footnote referrer *

Footnote **

Previous wording: Provide interpretation services for all requests that quality under the Translation Bureau's mandate according to recognized international standards.

Return to footnote referrer **

If you are a government client and would like to obtain the results on service standards for your own department (when such information is available), please contact the Translation Bureau.

We take our service commitments very seriously. If you have any concerns about service standards for suggestions on how we could improve our services, do not hesitate to contact us at

F. Addressing shortcomings and client issues to increase satisfaction

Example 1: New pricing structure TRANSPARENT!

You wanted pricing to be simpler and more transparent. We heard you and have simplified our rates. For example:

  • We have established one rate for official languages translation.
  • A single rush premium will be applied regardless of the day of the week.
  • A more transparent hourly rate will replace lump-sum billing for your multilingual translations.
  • A 60-minute minimum billing charge is now in effect.

Example 2: Interdepartmental working group CLIENT-CENTRIC!

In response to your expressed desire to better understand how other government departments are managing their translation programs and to play a larger part in shaping the Translation Bureau’s future, we plan to continue holding meetings of the Client Working Group on Translation Services (CWGTS). Made up of representatives of 15 departments and agencies, this working group provides a forum for consultations, for sharing best practices in managing the translation program within the Government of Canada, and for making recommendations to the Translation Bureau on strategic priorities, client satisfaction, service delivery processes and other common service issues.

Example 3: New simplified interface for sending service requests to the Bureau CLIENT-CENTRIC!

You have often told us that the Bureau’s On-Line Ordering system was not user-friendly and that you increasingly required estimates before proceeding with your translation requests. We have taken note of this. To provide you with a simple, user-friendly option for creating a translation request, the Bureau will soon be launching a pilot project for a new, simplified service request interface. This new interface will reduce the number of questions asked by the client advisors about translation requests, be more transparent and create an automatic estimate for “simple” translation requests. The pilot project will be launched in the near future with three CWGTS members; the full roll-out will take place sometime thereafter.

G. How satisfied are you?

The Bureau invites its clients to share their comments through its ongoing “Your opinion” survey found on its website. The following results were compiled between April 2013 and March 2014:

  • 89% overall satisfaction with the translation services provided by the Bureau.
  • 86% satisfaction with quality of translation services.
  • 85% delivery within agreed timeframe.

Source: Ongoing client satisfaction survey (Your opinion), 2013-2014.

H. For more information on Our Translation, Terminology and Interpretation Services