Customer Success Story: CMS and TMS Integration at Waters

Business Needs

“Our team was asked to implement a worldwide knowledge sharing program to improve efficiency and effectiveness of over 2,000 support technicians in 27 countries, and also provide a Customer Self-Help portal. We identified our requirements for success as:

  1. Knowledge capture needed to be done in the local language of the author;
  2. Knowledge had to be made available to the rest of the world in their local language in as close to real-time as possible;
  3. Knowledge needed to be “fluid” and knowledge workers are encouraged to improve each piece of content as needed (again, in their local language and in real-time).

The only way we could accomplish this was to have a connector that would capture all new and/or edited content, in multiple languages housed in multiple instances of cCMS, prepare, schedule and manage the translation process, then re-package and import content into multiple language sites. This would have been impossible without the help of Spartan Software and their development team.”

-Marc Noble, Program Manager, Knowledge Centered Services, Waters Corporation

Our Solution

Waters needed to automate content handoffs between its CMS and TMS. This is a typical situation in enterprise localization. Usually, a customer will purchase a CMS connector from a TMS vendor, if one is available. In this case, Waters contacted Spartan because their TMS vendor does not have a connector.

A connector is more than a mechanism for passing content back and forth between a CMS and a TMS. The connector’s first task is to identify new and updated content for translation. As part of the content identification process the connector must take into account how the content is structured and represented in the CMS as well as all the necessary metadata required for translation. In addition, exported files must be pre-processed before the TMS can accept them for translation. Likewise, translated content must be post-processed before it can be imported back into the CMS. Finally, the connector needs to provide the customer visibility into the status for tracking and reporting purposes. Without automation, significant, costly human resources will be needed to manage the handoffs through various scripts and spreadsheets. Unfortunately, this is a common situation in many enterprises.

Spartan built and deployed a CMS to TMS connector for Waters in 2017 to automate their content translation process.

Return On Investment

We have been tracking the usage data for ROI analysis since the launch. The diagram below shows the manual effort the connector has saved in terms of Full Time Employee (FTE) headcount.

Waters launched this initiative by translating their support knowledge base from English to two target locales in November, 2017. We observed a 15.8 FTE savings during the initial launch and enabled Waters to meet a tight publishing deadline. In other words, the launch would have required another 15.8 people to achieve these results if there were no automation. In addition, Waters realized a 19.1 FTE savings during a re-translation period after updating the CMS templates in September 2018. Overall, Waters achieve an average savings of 5.9 FTE per month after the launch.

If you are struggling to meet your business goals because of lack of translation automation, we can help! Please contact me at yan@spartansoftwareinc.com.

Happy New Year!