OMI Logo for webpage print only
Site Map   |  Accessibility   |  Contact us
Go to whole of WA Government Search
Template:   Night   |  High Contrast

Western Australian Language Services Policy 2014 and Guidelines
Working with a telephone interpreter

Before the assignment

  • Determine whether the subject matter to be discussed can be appropriately dealt with by telephone.
  • Organise appropriate equipment and a suitable room.
  • Ensure that you are in a quiet environment with minimal noise and other distractions.
  • If you have the client with you, ensure that appropriate handsets, speaker phone or dual handsets are organised.
  • Allow adequate time for the interpreting to take place.
  • Be clear about the information to be provided or sought before beginning so that this can be communicated clearly to the interpreter.

During the interview

  • Introduce yourself to the interpreter.
  • Brief the interpreter about the aim, context and situation for the telephone call.
  • Let the interpreter know if you have a:
    • single handset telephone
    • dual handset telephone
    • conference telephone.
  • Describe where you are, for example, counter, office, hospital ward.
  • When beginning the conversation, introduce yourself and the interpreter to the client and explain what will be discussed.
  • Ask direct questions and speak in short sentences. Avoid using colloquialisms, idioms, technical language and acronyms.
  • Speak clearly and at a moderate pace.

Completing the interview

Clearly indicate to all parties when the session is complete.

Provide the interpreter with an opportunity to debrief following the interpreting session, particularly if the matter has been complex or sensitive.