Many companies have an Intranet and an Extranet in SharePoint Online, open to customers, suppliers and, of course, their own employees. Most of these companies sell in several countries, buy from a wide variety of suppliers and their employees are from different countries and nationalities.
What if we want to communicate with all of them in a clear and direct way? Better to do it in our own language, right?
This is where the buts come:
- Do I need to create content in all languages?
- Will I need translators for all of them?
- How can I ensure that the content is published in all languages at the same time?
These are some of the questions asked by many companies that need to offer their content in multiple languages. Perhaps, a priori, the solution may seem trivial, and the answer is usually Solomonic: “We will communicate in Spanish (or in our language) and in English.”
What if there was an automated solution that would allow us to automatically translate all the content we want?
This is the solution that we have developed from Itequia: automatic translation of SharePoint Online content through the use of Azure functionalities. An automated solution that with minimal effort and cost and taking advantage of Azure and Microsoft SharePoint Online features, would allow us to automatically translate the content of our Intranet / Extranet into as many languages as we want, allowing us to get closer to our customers, suppliers and employees.
Automatic translation of Sharepoint with Azure
Microsoft SharePoint Online allows us to configure our site in different languages without needing additional add-ons. This is what we call multi-language.
We just have to configure our site to indicate which languages will be available and who will be the people in charge of the translation of that content that we are generating.
Thanks to this feature of SharePoint Online, once the page has been created in the main language of our site, we will be able to create the different pages in the target languages. These new pages are copies of the original page, waiting for their translation by the people indicated in the multi-language configuration.
From Itequia we set out to go further, therefore, we decided to extend this functionality. In this way, translators, instead of translating an entire page, only have to review the translation of the page, a page that has been automatically generated when creating the content using a microservice developed in Azure.
What resources do we need from Azure?
Broadly speaking, only 3 Azure resources are necessary to be able to quickly carry out automatic translation:
- Connection to the Microsoft Cognitive Services Translator service, a service included in our Azure subscription, which will allow us to translate:
- To and from more than 100 languages
- Application of functions that will contain the function in charge of receiving the content of the page, making the call to the Translator service and inserting the translation into the destination page, already translated.
- Logic application, through which the creation of a translated page is automatically detected in SharePoint Online and is responsible for calling the above function to translate it.
The process is as follows:
Once we have created this microservice, the creation and translation of the page will be practically simultaneous; pending, if we wish, the revision of the translation by the persons indicated in the multi-language configuration.
What is the result of the automatic translation?
Frequently asked questions | FAQ
My company already uses various Azure services, what is the cost of using this configuration?
The pricing of these elements in Azure will vary depending on the use we made of them, although it must be a very, very large use, almost impossible to achieve, to exceed the maximum included in our Azure subscription.
Am I limited to the source language of my content being unique or can I choose it freely?
Microsoft Translator allows us to automatically detect the language from which we want to translate; so we will have the freedom to create content in different languages and have automatic translation done to the target languages we want.
Most companies tend to create content with a very specific format and style, based on their style guide. Will the translation keep the original format?
The answer is yes. We are fortunate that Microsoft Translator accepts text both in plain format and in HTML format, so it maintains the format that we have given to the text in the translation results.
Another important question is, in what language can I implement this new function?
So far our solution developed for the automatic translation of SharePoint Online content through the use of Azure functionalities, an automated solution that with very little effort and minimal cost, will allow our company to automatically translate the content of our Intranet / Extranet, into as many languages as we want, helping us to get closer to our customers, suppliers and employees.
Oriol Fernandez Moreno – Software Developer at Itequia