Localization Basics: What is a Translation Management System (TMS)?

Last Updated October 14, 2021

A Translation Management System supports complex translation and localization tasks.

Localization and translation projects routinely involve multi-person, multilingual teams located across the world.

A translation management system (TMS) brings their different functions together to make it feel as if they’re working side-by-side.

A TMS facilitates the whole process. It makes the workflow smoother, translation memory management easier, and terminology coherent across all platforms and documents.

Let’s take a closer look at the main features of a translation management system.

Workflow Management

Translation and localization projects are complex as it is, and can get even more complicated if you’re using different language service providers for different types of content.

A TMS helps the process run more efficiently and, as a result, reduces your costs.

Additionally, a TMS automates processes, manages documents, and facilitates communication between the different team members.

If you’re working with a multilingual content management system (CMS) to publish your website content, a TMS can automatically grab new content and assign it to translators so that your multilingual audience stays up to date.

Translation Memory Management

Translation management systems centrally maintain a database of previously translated phrases and fragments, commonly referred to as a translation memory.

If your translation volume is high, translation memories will save money and time. They also help maintain consistency as the team will lean on previously translated material.

A TMS maintains the memories centrally to be accessed in real time. The process is much more streamlined in comparison to offline computer assisted translation tools.

Terminology Management

It’s critical to maintain and make use of a terminology database to further ensure consistency in branding across regions and languages.

Like translation memory does with individual words, terminology databases store and save translations of common terms and phrases used for marketing global brands.


Like any other business process, companies want to know how much work has been done, how much money has been spent, and how things stand in comparison to planned outputs.

A TMS gathers all this data with ease since all work is managed centrally through the same system.

Remember to factor future gains into the equation. Localization of an e-commerce website can cause your potential number of customers to rise exponentially, for example.

That’s one of the many reasons why localization is well worth the investment.

Integrated Machine Translation

Most modern translation management systems offer API connectors for popular machine translation providers.

You may not be considering machine translation now, or maybe it is not a good solution for the content you translate today, but having the ability to easily add machine translation to your workflow when needed is always a nice benefit.

In need of localization services?

Summa Linguae Technologies is a leading provider of translation and localization services for top technology companies like yours.

Contact us to find out how we can help you expand into new markets.

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