Logistics 2030 – People make the difference

Logistics is a complex interplay between flows of goods and information in intelligent networks. People are and remain the key to their success and reliability. The maxim “Logistics is People Business” has many faces—in DACHSER’s overall strategy as well as in the everyday life at the family-owned company. 

Teamwork is part and parcel of logistics quality. Picture: Detlef Majer

They’re already waiting in the warehouse. Today is “M.I.T.einander Day,” a kind of “Together with the Team Day.” Every two months, the project team at DACHSER’s Kornwestheim branch near Stuttgart brings a few pub tables and a pinboard to the branch and talks to the employees. And it does so at every operational level: sometimes in the offices, sometimes in the warehouse, sometimes in cargo handling, sometimes in the external warehouse in Vaihingen an der Enz. In the program’s German name, the “M.I.T.” stands for “Mitten im Team,” roughly “in the midst of the team.” However, it’s also the first part of the word “miteinander,” meaning “with each other.” In this way, the program’s title contains clues to its objectives.

The Kornwestheim branch is one of the larger hubs in the DACHSER network. Covering an area of 91,800 m², it comprises three building complexes plus the warehouse site. “It’s not easy for the 530 or so employees to keep track of everything that’s happening at the branch,” says project manager Lena Herion. The 27-year-old is part of the newly formed seven-person M.I.T.einander team, as is her colleague, HR manager Manuel Scimone. “With this campaign, we want to give employees from the different departments the opportunity to talk to us regularly about current projects, news, and actions at our branch and in the DACHSER network,” Scimone explains, “and we want to engage in direct dialogue with them.” And it’s working: Herion reports that participants’ initial reticence has long since turned into a very lively exchange.

In 20 minutes, everything’s out in the open—from the constantly dripping coffee machine to occupational safety, from company health care to the big picture in logistics processes with new IT possibilities. “The depth of conversation is fascinating,” Herion says happily. “There’s a takeaway for everyone, every time.” Employees who have the day off or are working remotely aren’t left out: the M.I.T.einander team creates a video especially for them covering the topics of the event. This allows everyone to ask the team questions or make suggestions afterward.

“The strength of our organization lies above all in our network of people who share a passion for logistics. And that goes for all levels: from management to trainees, from commercial employees to logistics operatives, as well as the drivers who ultimately give our performance a friendly and professional face every day,” explains DACHSER CEO Burkhard Eling. “Nothing in logistics works without people. Our employees are and will remain the key to our company’s success.” This idea is embodied by a strategic focus program at DACHSER called “Logistics is People Business,” or LiPB for short. It finds expression both in large global projects such as the introduction of an HR system and in many local initiatives like the one in Kornwestheim.

A global HR strategy

To promote the strategy and drive its take-up throughout the company, LiPB Program Management was created under the leadership of Silke Schöpp. Together with her team, she focuses on four strategic fields of action: Employee Experience, Collaboration, Learning & Development, and Corporate Culture.

“We asked ourselves what makes DACHSER an attractive employer today and what will keep it attractive tomorrow,” Schöpp says. “No one knows this better than those who experience the company in all its facets every day from the inside and who actively help shape it. We have fantastic employees all over the world who can make a valuable contribution to the entire network.” Communicating and exchanging ideas brings together perspectives from different countries and areas of the company. “It’s a win-win for everyone,” Schöpp says. 

Find out more about the four strategic fields of action of Logistics is People Business in the cover story of DACHSER magazine issue 04/23.

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