CIOL Conference 2020: A chance to learn, build links and shape our success together


Surrey Translation Bureau (STB) was proud to not only sponsor, but also exhibit at CIOL’s first two-day conference, previously known as Members’ Day, at BMA House in London on 6 and 7 March 2020.

The CIOL conference was a fantastic opportunity for STB to branch out and meet new translators and other language professionals, and gave our six STB staff members in attendance the chance to listen to some fascinating talks.

The motto of the two days was ‘CHALLENGE, LEARN, SUCCEED’ and that’s exactly what was represented in the talks on offer. From the changing world of languages to Brexit, and from specialising as a legal translator to slowing your pace in order to increase resilience, there was something to be taken from each session to help us all succeed.

The same motto could be applied to STB’s presence at the event. Some of the linguists challenged our processes, however we were able to reassure them with our ISO certifications in translation services (17100:2015) and quality management systems (9001:2015). Many simply wanted to learn more about the company, providing us the opportunity to boast our over 35 years of experience within the industry, and all the extras that we provide our freelancers, such as free access to our eCPD webinars and a yearly freelancer event for training and networking. We love our freelancers here at STB, pride ourselves on excellent communication and also enjoy the odd selfie or two! It’s through such collaborations that the WHOLE industry can succeed.

As Ann Carlisle, chief executive of CIOL and IoLET said when opening the event, “we are all part of the profession, so it’s time that we start to build links between us” and this is definitely something that was achieved at the conference. Hayley Harris also discussed in her talk how the ‘translation business’ includes buyers/users, translation agencies (such as ourselves), academics, teachers and students, professional bodies (such as CIOL) and, of course, translators, and emphasised how we all need to work together to shape the future of the translation business. STB is keen to communicate and build links with all the members of the translation industry, as can be seen from our frequent collaborations with universities across the country, the internships that we offer, our attendance at events such as this conference and our continued effort to maintain fantastic working relationships with both our clients and our freelancers.

Given the success of the CIOL Conference 2020, it’s safe to say that we’re already looking forward to attending next year’s event!