To certify or not: Staying competitive as a small LSP

Is being part of the national certification association paramount to success? Will ISO certification guarantee business growth? Here is what you should consider before investing time and money in standard certification.

Text by Daniel Malament Afaf Steiert


To certify or not: Staying competitive as a small LSP

Image: © Timur Arbaev/

Language service providers (LSP) today operate in a self-regulated market that is structured through regional, national and international standards. Adhering to these standards is awarded with a set of certifications that remain pivotal to the business development of an LSP as it aims to either grow or retain a portfolio of clientele. This certification system originates from Europe and the U.S., where standards were first developed as these large economies worked hard in order to realize their vision of a global economy. To remain profitable in a globalized world, LSPs today need to meet not only national but also internationalized standards.

Driving factors

To understand how standardization became a pervasive reality across all industries, we must remember two historic developments: the industrial revolution and the European project.

First, the industrial revolution paved the way ...