The interpreting market is a diverse and complex sector within the language industry. There are different modes — consecutive, simultaneous, and whispered interpreting — and different modalities, i.e. onsite, over-the-phone (OPI), and video-remote interpreting (VRI). There are different types of interpreting, like medical, legal, community, and conference interpreting and all of them come with their own requirements.
At the moment, we count 75 virtual interpreting technologies (VIT) on the market. Some are meant to be used at conferences, some by end-users traveling abroad, some are only suitable for web conferencing.
The United States is the largest interpreting market in the world. Almost half of the interpreting providers on our ranking of top players in the world are from the US and have a combined revenue of USD 932.4 million.
The Paris Peace Conference in 1919 was a historic moment in many ways. The Treaty of Versailles marked the official end of World War I and if that wasn’t enough, it also established the League of Nations (later the United Nations) and the International Labour Office (ILO).
The UK market is the second largest localization and interpreting market in the world. It is defined by several large language service companies, a handful of mid-sized players and over a thousand smaller or specialist companies competing to meet client needs. Nimdzi and the Association of Translation Companies (ATC) have combined their efforts to provide a comprehensive overview of the language industry in the United Kingdom.
We estimate the market for interpreting services in 2019 at USD 7.6 billion. This includes core services such as onsite interpreting, over-the-phone interpreting (OPI), video remote interpreting (VRI), video relay services (VRS), sign language interpreting, conference interpreting, equipment rental for interpreting, and related services.
The World Federation of the Deaf estimates that there are around 70 million deaf people in the world. When we think of equal access for deaf people, we probably think of more extreme scenarios, such as medical and legal settings. But what about everyday needs and real inclusion? For example in education and tourism.
There are 351 languages other than English (LOTE) spoken in US homes and over 25 million LOTE speakers. In the US, the nationwide certifications that apply to medical interpreters are the National Board of Certification for Medical Interpreters (NBCMI) and the Certification Commission for Healthcare Interpreters (CCHI).
A recent survey by Nimdzi revealed that almost 35 percent, or every third interpreter, had to either leave the profession, take a prolonged leave of absence, or stop taking certain assignments due to their struggle with vicarious trauma.