The road to Convergence: a backstage peek

October 25, 2018 Susan Hilliar

James Caan CBE with Susan Hilliar at Convergence EMEA 2017

Through the spinning doors of the InterContinental London – 02, over 1200 of attendees made their way into the building for the first day of Cornerstone Convergence EMEA 2017, the annual client and partner conference, which has been running now for 10 years. The foyer was filled with the smell of fresh coffee and pastries as the attendees chatted in over 30 different languages; the likes of ‘Welche Sitzung gehst du als nächstes an?’ and ‘Il me faut un autre espresso!’ were heard in the expo hall as the first day of the conference began.

Throughout the 2-day event, attendees had access to a depth of topical presentations, client breakout sessions and of course, the infamous Convergence Client Appreciation party. The two-day event went quickly, but for those that were planning it, those two days took many months to prepare. The road to delivering Convergence is a long but rewarding one! Have you ever wondered how the year’s biggest event gets put together, and what do we do behind the scenes to make Convergence a success year on year? Wonder no more and read on!

Starting the engine

This year we’re expecting 1,500 attendees and with this many HR professionals and business executives expecting a great two days, the planning starts early. In fact, this year we started back in January 2018.

We’ve already had dozens of meetings and hundreds of calls to refine all of the details for the day, totalling approximately 220 hours of planning. During these meetings we discuss everything from which client speakers will be presenting to the type of food that will be served at the client appreciation party (get excited, the food this year is going to be delicious!). This year, we have over 50 speakers, travelling from across the world — in fact, one client speaker will be making a 5,453-mile trip from California to London. It’s looking like this year is going to be our biggest Convergence yet!

Lights, Cameras and Action!

Did you know that there are 5 cameras, over 200 lights, 10 microphones and 27 screens set-up across the venue in order to capture each and every important moment? Making sure all of these work simultaneously is quite a task, but we love a challenge and it’s always paid off with the great comments we receive as part of our feedback survey.

During the event, all our Cornerstars are constantly on the move. Whether they’re hosting a breakout session, giving the key note or manning the swag shop, Convergence is a team sport and we love every moment of it.

A social affair

During Convergence the social media sphere is certainly alive and kicking but there is also a lot of socialising going on inside the expo hall. As any previous attendee will agree, everyone must be kept fuelled to keep up with the excitement of the event. And what better way to stay alert than over a nice cup of coffee. Last year, our coffee cart served 2,400 coffees, from espressos to extra strong mochas — most of them were served the day after our party, I know lots of us needed caffeine after a long night of dancing.

An extra touch

Convergence EMEA brings together thousands of HR and talent professionals and executives from across many industries to discuss the biggest issues, trends and technology in the workplace. Our key notes, breakout sessions and networking opportunities all aim to educate and encourage innovation within companies to maximise how they manage and develop their workforce. One of my highlights from last year was to welcome top business man and TV celebrity James Caan CBE as one of our guest speakers. James discussed the importance of talent for every organisation and how people are the essential fuel for businesses. He also did a book signing at the end of the event!

Planning Convergence EMEA takes time, focus and meticulous attention to detail, but the end result is always fantastic. We’re excited to show you all what this year’s event has to offer, we have a lot of surprises up our sleeve!

See you soon.

View Convergence 2018 event details at

Follow Convergence 2018 on Twitter at @CSOEDEMEA or search #CSODConf18. You can also reach us on Facebook or Instagram.

About the Author

Susan Hilliar

"Some of the best stories come from the most unlikely sources – always be curious, always ask questions” ​​​​​​​ Susan Hilliar is Head of Public Realations at Cornerstone OnDemand, as a corporate communications professional she works with Cornerstone’s clients across Europe.

Follow on Twitter Follow on Linkedin More Content by Susan Hilliar
Previous Article
How to avoid the most common pitfalls of AI in recruiting
How to avoid the most common pitfalls of AI in recruiting

Recently I was contacted by a recruiter who invited me to apply for jobs within the communications industry...

Next Article
Are smart contracts a clever solution for HR?
Are smart contracts a clever solution for HR?

New technologies are constantly arising and being used across all industries and sectors. In a previous blo...