What is your role at Certification Experts?
SL: I started 3.5 years ago as a legal intern, and now I am a compliance expert and business developer. I am responsible for product certification, managing our digital environment, expanding our German office and settling into the German market.
Why did CE expand to Germany and what is the Berlin office all about?
SL: Germany is one of the largest economies in Europe and is at the frontline of the automotive, engineering, and electrical industries. Since product safety is integral to these industries, we found our expertise in the fields of product compliance and CE marking to be highly relevant to the German market. Many of our requests originate from Germany, so setting up offices there was also a way to improve our services to existing clientele. We chose Berlin because it is a cradle of development: as one of the biggest tech cities in Europe, it holds a lot of opportunities. Our digital team is also based here and we are busy developing the latest Certification Experts products.
What can we look forward to in the coming months?
SL: Lots! We launched our webshop two months ago, which we will be adding new products to. The webshop is an exciting new approach for us: there is a high demand for templates, guides and courses for specific industries, and we wanted to create a place where customers can easily access such products online. We currently offer Safexpert products for automated risk assessments and plan to add new products about occupational safety in the coming months.
Our Certification Academy is also set to launch later this year, which will provide courses and showcase certification processes so that our knowledge can be shared with a broader audience. Finally, the digital team will continue to optimize our customer journey. Time is highly valuable in the certification process, and we want to minimize delays so that products that comply with global safety standards are on the market as soon as possible. The easiest way to reach this is through optimizing our digital environment.
What are some other goals for 2020?
SL: We want to be of assistance in as many industries as possible pertaining to CE marking and product safety. The world of safety is ever evolving, and with constant changes like Brexit making legal frameworks more complex, we continue providing up-to-date information about how this affects different players in the field of product compliance. When the UK leaves the EU, producers who want to continue exporting to the UK will need an authorized representative, and Certification Experts will act as an AR for the new UKCA regulations which will replace the European CE framework. Another foreseeable development is that the Chinese market will continue to grow. Together with our team in Shenyang we are working to have exporting processes between China and Europe worked out as smoothly as possible by the end of 2020.
What do you enjoy most about being based in Berlin?
SL: Germany is renowned for its emphasis on product safety. Living in the German capital allows me to stay up to date with cutting-edge advancements in the field of compliance in various industries. The startup ecosystem and freelancer world is very interesting when expanding a company because it’s a great place to connect with new people and come up with new ideas. The overall mindset of the city also motivates me: I like the edginess and rawness to it, but also the beauty that it has.