We often hear people tell us that they enjoy what Smartcat does both with its product and for the industry but their customers want them to use another CAT tool. As this seems to be a recurring theme, we decided to set the record straight once and for all:

Smartcat is NOT just a CAT tool

There are at least three ways you can use Smartcat if your customers won’t budge when it comes to which CAT tool to use. Let’s take a look.

1. Using Smartcat with other CAT tools and CAT-specific formats

First of all, Smartcat fully supports the industry-standard XLIFF specification, including the various vendor-specific modifications such as SDLXLIFF or MQXLIFF. Smartcat even supports higher-level abstractions such as SDL Trados packages. All you need to do is upload your files with Smartcat, work on them — with all the usual perks such as real-time collaboration and the built-in marketplace, — and then download the result and send it back to your customer.

And even if you don’t want to use Smartcat as a CAT tool, it’s still worth using it as a translation management system. Take Trados or memoQ: You might enjoy their CAT capabilities, but how user-friendly are they really when it comes to tracking projects?

What if you have several project managers and want to keep track of everything in one place? Or if you don’t want to use any CAT tool at all, i.e. if you’re working with a transcreation or a purely DTP project? If your answer in these cases is to create an “Excel TMS” and try to keep everything under control using a spreadsheet, things might get messy fast.

With Smartcat, you can easily create “container” projects for external jobs, whether it’s something you want to do in another CAT tool, or any other non-translation project that you need to keep track of.

Also worth mentioning are Smartcat integrations, which will allow you to build a continuous localization process for all kinds of content management systems and repositories you or your customers might use.

2. Hiring Smartcat Marketplace freelancers for non-CAT work

If you have projects that involve services other than translation and that you don’t already have freelancers lined up for, you can find them right on Smartcat. There are plenty of desktop publishers, transcribers, and project managers in the Smartcat Marketplace that will be happy to help you out.

For example, here’s how you can assign a DTP job:

The specialist will receive an invitation to the project with the task description. Once they accept and complete the task, they will upload it to Smartcat, where you will be able to access and keep track of it.

3. Paying vendors via Smartcat payment automation

Finally, whatever CAT tool you use, or even if you don’t use one, you still have to pay people, right? If you’re currently making individual payments, you’ll likely run into scalability issues very soon. We already wrote about the importance of payment automation, but, in a nutshell, it can help you grow your EBITDA by up to 50%.

So even if you don’t use Smartcat as a CAT tool or a TMS, the payment automation features are worthwhile on their own. With Smartcat, you’ll only have to pay once — the total amount you owe to all your vendors. The platform will distribute it accordingly to your payees, wherever they are located, whether they are individuals or companies, and using whichever payout method they prefer. (Read more about Smartcat payment automation here.)

The bottom line is, you don’t need several tools to manage all your projects. At Smartcat, we want to make things as simple as possible for you. And we’re adding more and more TMS features with every release, so more fun to come.

Stay tuned! 🐙