Time really does fly!
This year marks fifteen years since I first founded COMUNICA.dk translations back in 2007. As I sit from my desk and look out over the office, I can hardly believe how much we have grown and developed over this time. It has been an incredible journey and a real privilege to share my passion for languages with such a fantastic and dedicated team.
Together we have created a busy and creative translation agency which I am very proud to have had a part in – and so as we celebrate this amazing milestone, I would like to take this opportunity to look back on some highlights from the last fifteen years.
Broad beginnings and finding our feet (2007 – 2012)
Comunica began as more of a language house than a translation agency. In the early days, we offered language teaching as well as translations to both private and corporate customers. Around 2008, we became a supplier to the world’s largest translation agency and before long we were their primary vendor for the German language . As time went on, we grew our database of freelance translators in order to meet the high level of demand from both our big partner LSPs and a growing number of direct clients.
These were exciting and fast-paced years when we were learning a lot and really finding our feet. It wasn’t always easy, but we felt like we were really moulding our company into something concrete and defined. We were identifying gaps in the market and positioning ourselves to fill them and to offer a quality service which there was a true need for among our ever growing roster of clients.
Building our brand and setting down roots (2013 – 2018)
In 2013, we decided to close down the language school side of our company and focus completely on our successful and fast-growing translation business. In order to build our profile, we began attending international industry conferences such as NTIF and LocWorld in order to really get our name out there and to begin building bridges and making connections in the industry. These were the crucial founding stones of our future development as both a brand and a player in the translation sector.
This sea change in approach was also followed by a few big milestones. In 2016, a dream of mine came true as we moved into our purpose-built offices in Fuengirola , Spain, which were perfectly configured to meet the needs of a busy translation agency. Their bright and cheerful red and white colour scheme was designed to match both our brand identity and our mood as an agency – always colourful, uplifting and welcoming to everyone who sets foot through the door, whether physically or virtually. At 170 m2, they offered us plenty of space to spread our wings and continue to grow.
In 2018, we made a big investment in our IT department. Juan Jose Ramos came on board as our new IT manager in charge of providing IT support to our ever-growing team, which by this stage encompassed both project managers and in-house translators. Juanjo, as he is known affectionately to us around the office, helped us to programme and set up some new and innovative tools which haven proven essential to our competitiveness in the industry.
One thing we soon learned was that having the latest technology is of the outmost important and so bringing Juanjo on board was one of the best decisions I ever made in the development of Comunica. He is still an essential part of the team today and thanks to his input we are all adept users of the latest industry tools.
Translating through the pandemic (2019 – 2022)
2019 was a pivotal year for us – in March we participated at the Globalization and Localization Conference (GALA ) in Munich and we became a member of that association later in the same year. Things were on the up and up, but little did we know what was lurking around the corner.
The first wave of the pandemic hit Spain hard and our lockdown was severe. Social contact was completely scaled back for three long months, but luckily we had our strong bond as a team to help see us through. We kept in touch through daily chats on Slack and on Zoom and found that good team work was crucial during those challenging early days as our workflow began to dry up amidst so much uncertainty. This meant a degree of financial challenge for the business which we had to work hard to address, but going into crisis mode also helped to strengthen yet even further our bond as a team.
We made a memory wall to express the feelings we had during that difficult year when things were so uncertain. But looking back on the pandemic from the other side, I can also say that it was a positive time when we grew and evolved considerably. We built our resilience and we welcomed some new members to the team. Before long, demand was so high that we were able to bring two new PMs and a Sales Manager on board. Our transition to remote working also went off smoothly and gave us greater flexibility as a business.
The next fifteen years
We are very pleased to have survived the pandemic – and not only that, but to have grown our business along the way. The last year has seen yet further changes as we introduced an innovative CRM system called XTRF into our workflow in order to streamline our processes and make them both more efficient and more adaptable. We have also seen the return of brighter days – in September we threw a fantastic end-of-summer event to celebrate our work during the pandemic and in December we had our first Christmas Dinner together in two years.
At this juncture, we are incredibly pleased with the strong translation agency we have built together, which is supported by a fantastic team and very proud of its sharp and clear identity. Here at Comunica, we know very well who we are, what we do and where we excel. It took us some time to find our niche, but we are now well recognised within the industry as a boutique translation agency for the Nordic languages that delivers quality-assured and creative results time after time after time.
Looking ahead over the next fifteen years, I see much more growth, development and indeed success on the horizon. And I am excited to continue this journey together with my wonderful colleagues, translators and clients who have made these last fifteen years such a joy to experience.
Here’s hoping you’ll be a part of our story too as we begin our next chapter!