Value Added Services – the carpenters from DB Schenker

Logistics is much more than the transportation of goods from one place to another, storage and transhipment. Additional services such as further processing, finishing or packaging make logistical tasks even more exciting. With so-called value added services, logisticians are increasingly responding to customer needs.

DB Schenker offers such special services in Stuttgart: two carpenters design customized packaging for the freight in their in-house workshop. The customers are from the automotive industry or mechanical engineering. Their systems and machines usually exceed the dimensions of standard packaging.
For a car manufacturer in southern Germany, for example, the carpenters created special transport containers to transport engines. Each container held an engine, which was secured with the help of wood, straps and storage bags. This way, the engine was not damaged, and at the same time it could not slip during transport.

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Many freight items can only be transported safely with such precisely adapted containers or on unusually dimensioned pallets – especially when it comes to large and heavy systems. “For many of our customers, this offer is very important in order to be able to export internationally,” says Bernd Zusneid, operations manager at the Air Cargo Center in the office for contract logistics / SCM at Stuttgart Airport.

Training makes you independent

DB Schenker wants to continue to be able to offer such services in the future and is continuing to expand its joinery. “But we found that it is very difficult to get qualified craftsmen,” says Zusneid. “That is why we decided to train the staff ourselves so that we would not be dependent on the fluctuations in the labor market.” That is why DB Schenker trained a carpenter for the first time.

For this, however, the logisticians first had to meet the requirements – after all, it is a classic craft job. “I had to pass a special exam for this,” says Mohamad Hamade, who heads the carpentry. After demonstrating his many years of professional experience, he attended a qualification course and finally took the exam to become an instructor. In addition, the logisticians had to win another carpenter’s workshop as a cooperation partner, which would provide the trainee with more practical knowledge.

Up to four requests for packaging a week

The right trainee was also quickly found: Simon Mack became aware of the company at a training fair – and somehow it sparked immediately. The training lasted three years. After the successful examination in summer 2019, Mack found himself in his joinery – as a certified carpenter. “It’s about reacting quickly and precisely to the sometimes very complicated requirements of customers,” says the 25-year-old. He is proud when a really large piece of freight is transported out of the hall in the self-made packaging. “That is fun. I’m happy at DB Schenker.”

“Is the logistician becoming a carpenter? DB Schenker trains carpenters in Stuttgart in order to be able to offer customers additional services. DB Schenker. #ValueAddedServices. #Logistics“

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In the meantime, the office with the joinery has established itself as a reliable partner for companies in the region. The office has 30 employees who offer customers logistical solutions. Logisticians receive three to four inquiries per week for special packaging. There is still a long way to go for the team and their carpenters Mohamad Hamade and Simon Mack.