Alfa-Bank Kazakhstan is a mid-sized bank that has been operating in Kazakhstan for 25 years. Their main strategy for the next years is focusing on digital products and promoting their iOS and Android apps. Currently, they serve over 300K regular and 100K digital clients.
One of the biggest problems for Alfa-Bank was their inability to serve and target a Kazakh-speaking audience or foreigners. Their app had no localization, all texts were maintained in Russian, which resulted in a loss of opportunities and a significantly smaller market share.
Moreover, localization management is a hassle for developers. Alfa-Bank’s developer team was forced to manually maintain and populate the localization strings. Without a proper translation management system, it was impossible to delegate the work to product managers.
Last but not least — developers were prone to allow grammar mistakes, which led to the whole process becoming even longer due to the endless revisions necessary.
""Outsourcing" almost all copywriting and localization workflow to product managers helped us boost development speed." Azamat Kalmurzayev, Mobile Development Lead
After the problem with localization was identified, the Alfa-Bank team started to look for a solution. One of the options was deploying and maintaining their own translation and localization services using the Serge+Pootle from Evernote.
During the implementation and maintenance cost analysis, one of the colleagues from another company had mentioned Lokalise. The Alfa-Bank team checked out the platform and decided to abandon the plan for developing an internal translation service. Lokalise offered a powerful tool packed with features, and provided an escape from all the hassles and headaches of maintaining the internal solution.
"Integration into our Git flow - this is the biggest YES for us"
Currently, Alfa-Bank has already implemented two Lokalise projects, but plans to add more in the future. The localization workflow became fast and simple: the copywriter populates all languages, while developers export iOS and Android localization bundles and integrate them into their application repositories.
Some of the most-used features by the Alfa-Bank team:
"Soon we will be moving to a higher tier subscription, because other bank divisions have shown a great interest in Lokalise"
Our current workflow in Lokalise: when a copywriter populates all 3 languages, we trigger a CI pipeline, which exports iOS and Android localization bundles and integrates them into our application repositories. We use a separate github public repo to push/version all localization files. Pretty simple.
Lokalise has a very user-friendly interface, the filters and tags are extremely helpful in keeping everything organized and the in-line editor which synchs in both directions is a very neat little tool. Even just being able to attach screenshots to provide context has been a huge timesaver. Overall, Lokalise does exactly what it's supposed to do and the constant development has improved the software already so much over the time I've been working with it. However, the most noteworthy thing is the outstanding customer support that deals with questions and issues in record time.