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DB Schenker celebrates 150 years globally and 60 years in Australia

DB Schenker

DB Schenker’s Filippa Rusec, Chief Commercial Officer for Australia & New Zealand speaks to MHD about the logistics company’s 150th anniversary celebrations, its Australian 60th anniversary, what it’s accomplished in the past 10 years (particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic), its sustainability goals, and where it’s headed in the next 10 years.

DB Schenker, the German-headquartered logistics provider is celebrating its 150th anniversary this year with festivities across continents, and a global employee challenge to support charity projects. 

It says it aims to advance business and lives by shaping the way the world connects. It adds it also aims to shape the industry’s future through innovative, digital, and sustainable solutions. 

The theme for DB Schenker’s jubilee anniversary is “150 Years Elevating Lives.” The logistics provider says throughout the year there will be an internal employee competition connecting all colleagues across countries and continents. 

“2022 is a big year for us,” Filippa Rusec, Chief Commercial Officer ANZ at DB Schenker, says. “It’s marking 150 years of DB Schenker globally, but also 60 years in Australia.”

She notes the Elevating Lives global challenge will help the company’s employees keep physically and mentally well, with the aim to donate $1.5 million euros to charities.

DB Schenker’s employees can count their steps and track further sporting and mental activities via a dedicated smartphone app. 

“For every kilometre that we move – and that’s tracked in this team app – every quarter we donate,” Filippa says.  

DB Schenker explains how it will donate to carefully selected charities that relate to its commitment to the UN Sustainable Development Goals, as it records its employees’ sporting and mental achievements. 

During the first quarter of the year, all donations went to WeForest, an environmental protection organisation, which supports tree planting, forest conservation, and further local sustainability projects in Brazil and Ethiopia. 

DB Schenker says upcoming charity projects will include ocean and air protection, as well as social initiatives. 

“If the last few years have shown us anything, they have highlighted just how adaptable we can be as an organisation,” Filippa says. 

“We have faced hugely reduced flight schedules, labour shortages, severe supply chain bottlenecks – all during a global pandemic,” she adds.

DB Schenker will donate to Ocean Conservancy during Quarter Two and to humanitarian and air-related charities in quarters three and four. 

“We’ve also got prizes on the challenges throughout the year,” Filippa says. “And every employee will be receiving a thank you gift from the company.”

She adds that she can’t reveal what her gift will be, but that she can’t wait to receive it. 

These anniversary milestones will also be celebrated with staff and customer events around Australia and New Zealand. 

BECOMING THE WORLD’S LEADING LOGISTICS PARTNER

Filippa says DB Schenker is striving to become the world’s leading partner in logistics. 

“With 2022 marking 60 years of DB Schenker in Australia, we have a deep understanding of the industry here and will continue to work to meet the needs of our customers today as we move towards the future,” she explains. 

Filippa notes the past 10 years at the company have been paramount. 

“We’ve had to adapt to the changing industry and the changing of our customers and their end customer needs,” she says. 

“We’ve had to change as a business to adapt quickly and become increasingly agile. And part of that has included a lot of advancements in technology, structural changes, and process changes. 

“We’ve seen our customers’ supply chains evolve, increasing the income derived from the B2C market, and reducing the emphasis on traditional brick-and-mortar customers. 

“So, this has seen great growth in our contract logistics space, which has led us and allowed us to be creative in offering solutions for them.”

She says DB Schenker has recognised over the past decade that information is equally important with the company using digital platforms such as Connect 4.0, which has helped it to keep its customers informed, and to make the delivery process completely transparent. 

DB Schenker
DB Schenker has leading customer-facing platforms that allow quoting, booking, tracking, as well as reporting easily, transparently, and successfully.

She adds that the working environment has changed, too, and this has prompted DB Schenker to offer new ways of working this year. 

“We want our staff’s time in the office to be spent together and working in ways that suit them,” Filippa says. 

She notes DB Schenker’s newly renovated open plan Head Office is a fun environment for its employees where they can enjoy themselves while collaborating and have face-to-face connections. 

“We’ve also moved from traditional office space roles to be able to work remotely, and the traditional nine-to-five expectations have changed not only for us, but for our customers,” she says. 

“Our customers want information to be made readily available – hence the reason why we’ve invested a lot of time and resources into our digital platforms.” 

DB Schenker says the company has leading customer-facing platforms that allow quoting, booking, tracking, as well as reporting easily, transparently, and successfully. There are a number of other initiatives introduced as well. 

“We can now do virtual warehouse tours, so our customers here in Australia and New Zealand can tour any of our warehouses and sites around the world,” Filippa says. 

“Our dedicated local and global digital and innovation teams have a lot of exciting projects in the pipeline, and we are excited to share with our customers how we can continue to support them in new ways.

“We are continuing to focus on innovation, increasing our capacity to support fast changing market developments, adding automation, and leveraging new technology.”

Filippa says she wants to acknowledge the frontline workers who have been labouring throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. 

She adds that this was a challenging and rapidly changing environment for them, and that they – as essential workers – kept supply chains moving to ensure products were on store shelves and at people’s doors. 

“Each decade we’re constantly evolving to improve and meet customers’ needs,” she explains. “And I can say that I’m proud to be part of the DB Schenker journey and look forward to what is ahead.” 

DB Schenker is expecting to face new challenges over the next decade; however, it says it will continue to stand strong, united, and resilient to meet and exceed the expectations to its customers. 

“We understand that agility and responsiveness are important to meet the demands for our customers, with focus on digitalisation to drive efficiencies and productivity to supply chains,” Filippa says. 

“The world is more connected than it ever has been, and our end customers have higher expectations than what they used to, and rightly so,” she adds. 

“Companies are expected to manufacture faster, deliver quicker, have flexibility in mode solutions, and providing timely updates, all while having the social and environmental impacts at the forefront.” 

SECURING SUSTAINABILITY

Filippa explains how sustainability is at the forefront not only for DB Schenker, but for its customers, too. 

“We’ve made great inroads in this space using sustainability and sustainable building standards,” she says.

“Our Brisbane site has solar power panels, daylight harvesting and translucent panels, and we’re also using grey water sites,” she adds.

She says more will happen in an Australian context as DB Schenker implements some of its European sustainability initiatives here. 

“We recently signed an agreement so that all our ocean freight less-than-container loads (LCL) globally are using biofuel, meaning a net carbon zero-emission on a well-to-wake basis for our LCL segment,” Filippa explains. 

“We also have an array of multimodal solutions driving reduced Co2 emissions. We are working towards being carbon neutral by 2040. 

She says more will happen in an Australian context as DB Schenker implements some of its European sustainability initiatives here. 

“Expect to see continued innovation and improvements from us. We were pioneers 150 years ago globally, from 60 years ago in Australia, and we will continue to advance businesses and lives by shaping the way our world connects.”

For more information on DB Schenker, click here

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