At the end of April, we had the pleasure of exhibiting at Med-Tech Innovation 2017. It was an excellent event with knowledgeable and entertaining keynote speakers and visitors attending, not just from the UK and Ireland, but from as far afield as the USA and Thailand.
From the conversations we had with delegates, it definitely felt like there was a focus on how they could maximise the opportunities the current climate was presenting with regards to exporting medical devices.
Currently the UK imports more Medical Technology than it exports; 8 billion imports to just 6.1 billion[i] of exports. This is particularly surprising when you consider that the UK is the 2nd largest employer[ii] in the European medical technology industry.
Delegates were also rightly cautious when considering what investment would be required for them to maximise their exporting capabilities. We had numerous productive conversations on the role language and culture play in the success of global trade and how significantly they should feature in their plans.
Exporting is a significant investment for any organisation, but even more so if you are a small to medium sized business, of which over 80%[iii] of the medical device industry are. However research has shown that organisations which have made the conscious decision to invest in professional language services achieve a far higher export to turnover ratio[iv]. So it was great to see these companies factoring this in, particularly with the complex communications such as Instructions for Use that need to be translated in the medical device market.
The theme of launching medical products into new markets was also picked up by the keynote speakers at Med-Tech Innovation. Of particular interest was the presentation by Linda Moon from BSI’s QMS team, who demystified the changes that ISO 13485:2016 will bring about for Medical Device manufacturers.
We will be building upon the insights, presented by Linda Moon, via a series of podcasts which will focus on the EU requirements for translation for exporting manufacturers. We will be releasing these in conjunction with Procorre, a global consultancy who specialise in supporting medical organisations.
Watch this space for more information!
[i] The European Medical Technology Industry in Figures 2015
[ii] The European Medical Technology Industry in Figures 2015
[iii] Medical devices – The current landscape in the UK (Laing & Buisson, Berwin, Leighton, Paisner)
[iv] Research from the Common Sense Advisory shows 72% of overseas customers would rather buy products that provide information in their own language. With 56% saying language is more important than price.