The 2017 member survey confirmed the attractions of regional events for participants. Almost all members are aware of the meetings of the regional Chapters, and many of them regularly attend these events – and are extremely satisfied with the opportunities this provides for information and communication across the country.
It is thanks to the honorary Chapter Chairs and their excellent contacts that BVL members – and frequently also their guests – have the opportunity to look behind the scenes and enjoy the hospitality of companies, universities and other logistics-related establishments. These contacts are underpinned by longstanding regional networks and a high level of personal continuity and engagement. In recognition of their ten years in their honorary office, six Chapter Chairs were presented with the BVL badge of honour and a certificate in 2017 – Frank M. Schröer (North Hessen), Prof. Diane Ahrens (Eastern Bavaria), Johannes Doll (Eastern Bavaria), Oliver Wittig (Rhine), Prof. Otto Jockel (Rhine) and Frank Freitag (Schleswig-Holstein).
There's really only one reason for members not to regularly take part in the company tours, presentations, workshops or roundtables, and that is lack of time. Which is a pity, as the topics and formats are so diverse and wide-ranging. In 2017, the 28 Chapters of experienced logistics managers, the 25 Student Chapters, the Young Professionals network and the eleven international Chapters once again staged around 300 events – from Schleswig-Holstein to Allgäu/Lake Constance, from Southwest Saxony/Upper Franconia to Saar/Rhine-Palatinate, from Korea to Poland, and from Singapore to the USA. 2017 saw the founding of the Chapter Korea-Seoul, where two BVL Representatives had been promoting the interests of the association since 2015. Representatives were newly appointed in Vietnam and in Iran.
The Chapter Chairs in Germany and around the world are also well connected with each other. They meet up once a year to exchange ideas and experiences, and to develop a strategy for the future together with the BVL Board and the personnel from head office. The 2017 Chapter Management Meeting was held in the Thuringian capital of Erfurt at the invitation of the Thuringia Chapter. Attendees discussed ways to further intensify the exchange between regions and also talked about the cross-border benefits of the Chapters. One idea is to set up specialist groups focusing on specific topics. And one thing became clear: different generations have a different take on the concept of "networking". While the younger members strongly favour virtual networking, their older counterparts still prefer meeting others in person. The overall conclusion of the meeting was that the range of tasks that lie ahead for the association and its honorary and full-time employees is extremely varied.
Six out of 300 events in 2017
Korea-Seoul The second Korean-German Logistics Conference took place at the beginning of June in Seoul. The event was prepared by the Chapter in cooperation with the Korea Maritime Institute, the Saemangeum Development Agency and the German-Korean Chamber of Commerce. Stephan Auer, Germany's Ambassador in the Republic of Korea, opened the conference, which was attended by around 150 participants, and called for a more intensive exchange of ideas and even closer cooperation.
Baden-Württemberg Around 200 participants came to the third "LogistikManufaktur Baden-Württemberg" in mid-July. Audi in Neckarsulm hosted this year's event, following Bosch and Festo in previous years. Following a tour of the plant complete with in-depth information and explanations, the discussion revolved around the topics of digitalization and Industry 4.0. The event was jointly organised by the BVL Chapter, the Intralogistics Network Baden-Württemberg and the German Engineering Federation (VDMA).
Lower Saxony On March 21, Stephan Wohler, BVL Advisory Board member and Management Board member IT and Logistics at Edeka Minden-Hannover Stiftung & Co. KG, welcomed around 40 members and guests from the BVL Lower Saxony Chapter to Edeka Service GmbH in Lauenau. Following a presentation on the organisation of processes in the field of retail logistics, the visitors had a choice of two expert-led tours – the fleet park or the dry goods warehouse.
Students This April in Erfurt, it was already time for the eighth Central German Student Conference, which took place at Erfurt University of Applied Sciences. The event was organised by the Thuringia Student Chapter. Around 80 attendees experienced a mix of ten presentations by graduates, who outlined the findings of their outstanding theses, and two outings. The discussions looked in greater depth at the theoretical content and the impressions gained during the event.
Young Professionals the "fireside chat" format for the younger generation of BVL members already working in the sector has now become well established and is not restricted to the colder months of the year. On August 31, the Young Professionals network issued an invitation to visit the BPW Innovation Lab in Siegburg. The industrial loft was the perfect setting to discuss topics relating to digitalization and innovation – and to ask questions about what the industry expects from career starters and young professionals.
Ladies in Logistics The first "Ladies in Logistics" event in the Ruhr region took place on September 14. This event was hosted by the Henkel company in Düsseldorf and proved very popular with the more than 25 participants. "Ladies in Logistics" is designed to appeal to women but explicitly does not exclude interested men from the events. The focus is generally on the career path of a female logistics manager whose example can encourage young women to pursue a career in logistics.