The Ultimate Guide to Video Conferences, Online Calls, and Remote Meetings in Multiple Languages

Do you want to run a successful video conference in multiple languages, but you're not sure how to do it in an unfamiliar setting? Not to worry, because we've got you covered!

Holding multilingual and multicultural virtual meetings is a challenge. With everything that's going on in the world, companies worldwide have no choice but to adapt. And fast! If our long experience in providing simultaneous interpretation taught us anything, preparation is half the battle. So without further ado, check out our guide to video conferencing in multiple languages.

How to set up your conference tool for a multilingual meeting

Thanks to constant technology development, virtual conferences can be as productive as their in-person alternative, while online calls can be easily set up for multiple languages.

To enable language interpretation in your meetings, before hiring professional remote interpreters, you have to set up your tool accordingly. Whether your video conference will take place on Zoom, Microsoft teams, or another similar platform, make sure you're adequately prepared. For example, to enable Zoom simultaneous interpretations for meetings and webinars, you should contact their Support and follow along. On the other hand, Microsoft Teams offer a step-by-step tutorial to help you hold a multilingual conference.

Once you're well equipped and the interpretation feature is enabled, the host of the meeting will be able to introduce a designated interpreter into the meeting allowing smooth communication and understanding between all participants. Once the conference starts, attendees will have the option to choose their preferred language and choose to listen to either speaker or the interpreter.

How to plan and organize a multilingual online call

To organize a multilingual online conference, you'll need to choose an adequate tool that supports remote simultaneous interpretation. It would then be best if you informed the attendees beforehand that the meeting will be held in multiple languages. Email them the meeting details, so they know how to choose the language they prefer when joining the call.

Once the meeting starts, the participants will have the option to select the preferred language, and the platform will connect them to the interpreter. Your interpreters will take it from there, allowing you to focus entirely on your meeting.

Six essential tips for the speaker working with an interpreter

Running a virtual call alongside interpreters takes some getting used to. Here are six essentials tips for the speaker working with interpreters to ensure a smooth conference call.

  • Brief the interpreters beforehand. Make sure you arrange a pre-meeting with your interpreters to discuss the details. It might be a good idea to share your presentation and terms you'll use with them before your conference to give them time to prepare. The more information you give them beforehand, the better!
  • Don't make pauses to help the interpreters. Despite what you might think, making pauses to jump in and help the interpreters doesn't help them at all. Quite the contrary! It ruins the natural flow of your presentation and their interpretation, endangering the quality of your online meeting.
  • Do make a pause when you refer to a specific page. When you want to refer to a page from your materials, give all your participants time to find it, including your interpreters.
  • Speak clearly and into the microphone. During remote meetings, you may forget to speak into the microphone, so the attendees won't be able to hear from you. Make sure you enunciate, speak clearly, and try not to come too close to the mike.
  • Avoid listening to the interpreter while you talk. Some bilingual speakers are tempted to listen to the simultaneous translation, but this is not a good idea, especially if you're not trained for that type of activity.
  • Speak at an average pace, and don't rush it. Try to be as natural as possible while you speak. Aim to maintain a regular speed so that everyone can follow along.

Handling Q&A sessions like an expert

Including a Q&A session in your remote meetings is always a great idea - especially for virtual calls held in multiple languages! It gives your attendees the chance to ask questions, clear up doubts, or share their views. The bottom line is, Q&A allows open discussion, which is always welcome, so even if your meetings are not in-person, you should still try to make room for a Q&A session.

Online Q&As can be just as useful as their traditional alternative. As long as you prepare in advance and choose the adequate tools, you'll quickly adapt to this new interaction format. So how do you handle Q&A sessions professionally? Here are a few tips.

Firstly, don't forget to set aside enough time for your virtual Q&A session, preferably towards the end of your online call. Answering questions usually lasts a lot longer than intended, so it's better to dedicate a specific amount of time, as well as to inform your audience about it ahead of time.

Also, explain the conference tool to your audience so they can submit questions successfully. As opposed to the traditional setting, attendees won't raise their hand if they want to ask you a question. That's why you explain at the start of the meeting how the Q&A session is going to be organized. Please encourage them to submit or upvote questions as the meeting goes on.
Make sure you prep the interpreters in advance so they can keep up during the online call. It would be best to brief them beforehand because they'll get more ready to answer the random questions that might arrive during the meeting.

How to get an interpreter for your online meeting?

Your video conference will be as good as the quality of interpretation. That's why you should get a professional translation agency with proven experience in providing remote simultaneous interpretation.

Trusted by the world's largest companies, Language Buró can help you organize multilingual virtual meetings. We can provide you with a network of trained linguists who can deliver high-quality remote simultaneous interpretation on your preferred web conferencing platform.

Apart from Zoom language interpretation, Webex, and Microsoft Teams simultaneous interpretation, we offer remote interpretation services for other worldwide known tools. The list of available web conferencing tools is endless: Skype, ON24, SpotMe, Accelevents, BlueJeans, GoToWebinar, Adobe Connect, Intrado, GEVME Live, WTV, Facebook Live, Youtube Live, and Workplace Live.

Whether you're organizing a multilingual video conference, online webinar, or a remote meeting, look no further than Language Buró! Get in touch with us today to receive a free interpretation quote.