🌍Not Lost in Translation: Meet Pille Lamp, Bondora’s Localization Expert

Today, we introduce you to Pille Lamp, our 40th Bondorian in the Spotlight. She speaks 8 languages, loves cats and nature, and will conquer linguistic bugs wherever she goes.

Read on to learn more about the intricacies of her daily tasks, what she loves most about working in marketing, and how she’s embraced being our legendary one-woman-localization-band.

Pille’s inspirational life motto: ‘Better safe than sorry. I’m a mom, you know 😜’
Pille’s inspirational life motto: ‘Better safe than sorry. I’m a mom, you know 😜’

The Bondorian Spotlight #40 — Pille Lamp

👱‍♀️Bondorian since February 2018

💬Role: Localization Lead

📣Team: Marketing

Pille’s journey at Bondora:

When I started at Bondora, there was no solid localization process. So, I had to roll up my sleeves and find the most suitable translation management platform, translation agency, and freelance linguists.

As a result, we have 23 wonderful and talented linguists who help our customers across Europe invest with us in their chosen language. My love goes to you! 💙

I also worked closely with our developers to create our internal translation tool. There have been times when I’ve wished I could clone myself to manage everything. However, with some developments and more automated processes, we’ve reduced manual intervention. This has allowed me to stay as a solid and proud one-woman band 🦸

Home office, sweet home office

Since 2020, I’ve been primarily working from home 🏡

I’ve set up a comfortable office corner and enjoy it a lot. It saves time as I skip commuting, and I also consider this my contribution to a smaller ecological footprint 🌍.

Still, I visit the office once or twice a month to partake in our fun office events and create better connections with my fellow Bondorians.

Pille’s typical workday

☕My mornings start with a massive cup of coffee with oat milk (one has to think about the cholesterol, 😅). I then dig into the latest emails, chats, and to-do lists.

Typically, several tasks are related to getting something localized, resolving linguistic bugs, responding to translation queries, and looking up phrases in our glossaries or translation memories to make quick fixes.

🤓 I’m a language nerd, so I can’t help reviewing our Estonian content and polishing it, but I also need to check other languages I speak to see if they are correct. I have learned English, Finnish, Russian, German, Norwegian, Danish, Swedish, French, and some Latin and Icelandic. It’svery useful since we have 24 European languages available for our investors.

Ensuring our localization partners are not flooded with tasks is vital. I need to prioritize tasks for them and set reasonable turnaround times. And I work closely with our developers to test and agree on the best translation tool solutions.

My work also includes several technical aspects, like understanding how our translation management platform interacts with our internal systems, how files are being parsed, how to read and fix HTML, to what extent we can trust our translation memories or AI translations, how to deploy localizations to our testing or live environments, etc.

People who don’t work in localization are usually surprised by how technical and complex my work can be 🥴

Pille’s cat, Fanta, ensures she takes a much-needed break every now and again 🐱‍💻
Pille’s cat, Fanta, ensures she takes a much-needed break every now and again 🐱‍💻

What’s the most rewarding part of your job?

I’m content when I see that our automated workflows save everybody’s time and all the cool features our translation management platform offers to assist the localizers, including the AI.

🤩 I’m ridiculously happy when I get localizations ready ahead of time, and they’re written well.

And what makes being in the Bondora Marketing team awesome?

Our team is open-minded, fast-acting, fun, supportive, and smart. I work with the best professionals in the market. It’s a dream team, for sure!

How did you find your way into localization?

Languages are my passion. But I can’t say it’s been my childhood dream to become a polyglot or work with languages.

After uni, I worked in the hospitality field and sales. But thanks to a wonderful turn of events, I worked at the Court of Justice of the European Communities, which opened the door to translations for me.

That valuable experience in linguistic project management paved the way for me to Skype, where I joined the localization team. Both these extremely useful and educational experiences made me brave enough to become Bondora’s single localizer.

How do you ensure consistency in messaging and brand across different languages and cultural contexts? 

✍️ First, one must have a top-notch English copywriter (cheers to our beloved Rita), along with our style and brand book.

🗣️ Second, we have a pool of local linguistic advocates who know their language and country specifics. They do the final proofreading of all our texts.

🌐 Third, we occasionally do another round of reviews among our employees whose country of origin and mother tongue are the markets we operate in.

What’s the most difficult language to localize into, and why?

Some languages have interesting grammar rules about plurals, and others have very long words and sentences, like Polish, Russian, and French.

English is a short language. So a button with text like ‘Invest now’ looks nice and short. But then, in French, it’s a longer ‘Investissez dès maintenant.’ So, the copywriter and designer must consider how English looks and other, longer languages. (Here, we can use pseudo-localization, another cool topic.)

What is your best investment advice?

💰 Start investing with your first salary.

And if you’re a newbie, start with simpler investment products like Bondora’s Go & Grow. (I work in marketing, it’s encouraged to do a bit of promotion 😉)

It’s super easy to use, and the return rate is 6.75% p.a., which has been consistent at this level since we launched it in 2018.

And now, let’s get to know Pille on a personal level!

What are some of your hobbies? What do you like to do in your free time?

📚 I love to read, and I tend to read a lot during stressful times and snitch night hours for reading.

🚶‍♀️I try to find time to take a daily walk and get some fresh air; in warmer seasons, I do small bike tours in the neighborhood, forests, and the seaside.

🎭 I also share a hobby with my husband – we are amateur actors in our village’s acting troupe.

Acting as a Court Lady (and later as a Dust Brush) in ‘The Beauty and the Beast.’ Urmo Lamp is on the left, Pille is in the middle, and Katrin Pebsen-Zachrau is on the right.
Acting as a Court Lady (and later as a Dust Brush) in ‘The Beauty and the Beast.’ Urmo Lamp is on the left, Pille is in the middle, and Katrin Pebsen-Zachrau is on the right.

What are your favorite games to play?

I’m an old-fashioned woman who plays board games only, which we do now and then with our family.

Our favorite is an Estonian card game called “The Man Who Spoke Snakish”; it’s simple and fun.

Bacon: yay or nay? 

Do I dare tell? 🤭

What’s your favorite TV show/podcast?

Game of Thrones was a TV show I could have binge-watched if that was an option back then, but it led me to its book series I binge-read.

I also liked Ozark and Downton Abbey, and just recently, I watched Reindeer Mafia, a Finnish crime series with a dash of dark humor.

What’s your favorite kind of music?

I like music from the times when I was young(er).

🤯 Oh gosh, I feel old and nerdy now.

But actually, the best music to my ears are the voices of nature, like forest rustling, waves on the seashore, birds chirping in my garden, etc. 🍃🐦🌊 🌳

Cats or dogs?  

I’m a cat person, 🐈 and our cat, Fanta, keeps us amused at all times. She recently learned to parkour on the wall, and she’s a super sleeper who can doze off in bizarre poses.

Our cat Fanta is practising parkour poses in her sleep.
Our cat Fanta is practising parkour poses in her sleep.

What superpower would you like to have and why?

Wouldn’t it be awesome to make people non-violent (both physically and mentally), abolish the lack of food, and wipe away pollution? Imagine a world like this? 😇

Thank you for following Pille on her incredible Bondorian Spotlight journey!

Tune in again next month to read another episode of The Bondorian Spotlight and meet our 41st Bondorian!

P.S. If you want to become our next Bondorian, head to our Careers Page to check out our open positions.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are that of the individual and not Bondora’s official view.

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