Creating a dashboard for Translators Without Borders


Translators Without Borders (TWB), a non-profit that aims to close the language gaps that hinder critical humanitarian efforts worldwide, was looking for a way of organising information relevant to understanding their workload, distributed across different systems. This information includes the number of words that need to be translated, and other relevant data related to their projects, user roles, or timeframes. The goal was to provide TWB’s different internal and external stakeholders, as well as the users of TWB systems with structured and easy access to information relevant to their work or interaction with TWB. The focus was specifically on capacity management, to increase transparency of the progress of translation work in relation to specific projects or partners. The system landscape is heterogenous, so one of the challenges was to provide a coherent overview for relevant information spread across the system landscape.

The Approach:

Since the stakeholders for the proposed dashboard work in different, remote locations, and the users have varying roles (e.g. external, internal), we therefore decided to conduct several  interviews with stakeholders with different roles, to get a precise idea of their needs. The gathered pool of information was then structured and prioritised. In the next phase we developed proposals based on the available knowledge on the situation. The result was an interactive prototype, which was used during several iterative meetings with TWB to specify details of the dashboard.


During development it was again important to stay in close contact with TWB, to build a product that is well adapted to the environment and needs. An agile approach, with frequent presentations to the client, helped optimise the result. Fundamental in ensuring good progress during the development phase is an experienced team, capable of handling unexpected difficulties in the infrastructure and specification. Thanks to to well-defined requirements, these difficulties were easily overcome.


TWB is now aware of the work that has been done on one page, the work that has to be done, overdue work, and continually updated with the corresponding list of relevant tasks. A set of filters allows easy access of work relating to certain external or internal stakeholders, in a specific timeframe, or for specific types of work. The TWB team now have a simplified process for the monitoring of their projects and thanks to improved visibility can now assign project work with a higher degree of efficiency.