Opening the file
If you are asked to work on a translation in Trados, you will be sent a ‘Project Package’. To open this in Trados, double click the file. Further instructions here:

Once the ‘Project Package’ has been opened in Trados go to: ‘Projects’ > double click Project > right-click the file > ‘Open For Translation’

‘Segments’ are each row in Trados that the translation has been split into. ‘Segment status’ is shown with symbol located between the ‘Source’ (English) and ‘Target’ (translation) column.


Repetitions are automatically populated based on your previous translation; therefore please ensure that you ‘Confirm’ every translation as you finish each ‘Segment’. A handy shortcut for this is ‘CTRL + Enter’. This changes the segment status from ‘Draft’  to ‘Translated’ (you can also right click the segment number on the left-hand-side to change this status).






Only segments which are confirmed as ‘Translated’ will populate future repeated segments.

Translation Memory (TM)
A Translation Memory is a file containing all previous translations for a client, which were completed in Trados. Segment statuses showing as ‘100%’ or ‘CM’ mean they have been fully translated previously. It is not necessary to stick to the TM if you believe there is an error or if the translation could be improved. Fuzzy matches (‘99%’, ‘89%’ etc.) show previous translations that are a close match to the selected segment and in the ‘Translation Results’ it will show how this segment differs from the TM.


The ‘Review’ tab in the top Ribbon is a great tool for consistency. Search for a word or phrase here and Trados will filter and show only ‘Segments’ containing the search term(s).


If you keep on top of the ‘Segment Status’ and change them as you translate, you can also filter out ‘Segments’ with a certain status. If you would like to revisit a ‘Segment’, it could be useful to change the status to ‘Draft’, so you can easily revisit these segments later; however, do bear in mind that ‘Draft’ segments will not populate future repetitions.

Concordance Search
Whilst translating, click ‘F3’ whilst highlighting a word or phrase in the ‘Source’ or ‘Target’ column to show how you previously translated it. This will also search the Translation Memory, which means you can check whether this term has been used before and how it was translated. (You can also right click these words or phrases to start ‘Concordance Search’.)

To add a comment highlight text, or click in a segment > right click > ‘Add Comment’. Please use this to pass on any messages to the proofreader or Project Manager – this could be notes to research you did, or an explanation for why you chose to complete a translation a certain way.

Always periodically save your work by clicking the ‘Save’ in the top left corner.

Return Package
Once complete and saved, go to ‘Projects’ > right click the ‘Project’ > ‘Create Return Project’. Further instructions can be found here:

We are very familiar with the software and happy to help. Trados can take a little while to get used to, but should greatly improve your translation experience. There are many tips and tricks that can be employed in Trados, so if you’re wondering whether it is possible to do something in Trados – ask us, we may know!  :-)

There is full documentation on the SDL Trados website here:

Proz also supplies detailed information and there are lots of answers to common questions in the forums: