When the leading transport logistic fair closed its doors on June 7, one thing was abundantly clear: the event had set a new record, with 2,374 exhibitors on the exhibition area, which now covered ten halls rather than the previous nine. In total, the fair attracted around 64,000 visitors from 125 countries to the Bavarian capital.
BVL was once again among the exhibitors and employed its newly designed trade fair stand in Munich for the first time. The new, fresh look with a wider palette of colours was very popular with the guests. In its role as a partner of Messe München, BVL was also involved in the accompanying programme and organised special-topic forums. The forum on “Women in Logistics” appears to have hit a nerve beyond the confines of the fair, and the full rows of chairs underlined the high level of interest in this topic and the need for discussion. One attendee took the opportunity to ask the panel for concrete tips for her future career planning. At the end of the forum, she said that the event had given her great encouragement.
In the forum entitled “End of Globalisation? Outlook for International Trade”, Dr. Christian Grotemeier, Managing Director of BVL.digital, presented the findings of a survey focusing on trade tensions. The survey is part of the “Flows and Tolls” project in cooperation with transport logistic. During the forum, Matthias Magnor, COO Road & Rail at Hellmann, said he is convinced that changes in globalisation will create new opportunities for both freight transporters and logistics service providers. BVL.digital was also one of the guests at the forum on “Rail Freight Transport: Challenges for Policy-Makers” organised by the Association of German Transport Companies”, where Grotemeier presented the findings of a survey on rail transport.
The image of logistics was also a topic at the fair. The BVL focus group of the same name discussed the benefits of “employer branding” in the effort to combat the skill shortage. It was also at the transport logistics fair that the “Wirtschaftsmacher” initiative launched its “Logistics Heroes” image campaign“.
Analysis: women in logistics professions
The fact that women are still not particularly well represented in logistics is not a matter of skills or qualifications. It’s more a question of corporate culture whether or not women are attracted to the jobs that logistics entails. And there are still a lack of role models. These are the findings of BVL based on a member survey and one-on-one interviews conducted on behalf of transport logistic. The session “Male Preserve?! Opportunities for and with Women in Logistics” on the Wednesday of the fair explored this topic in greater depth.
Due to its steady growth and the increasing integration of high-quality logistics services in the value added chain of trade and industry, the logistics sector offers a wide range of career opportunities for both women and men. Today, women who work in logistics are mainly to be found in traditional office jobs such as controlling, purchasing or personnel. At the same time, “female” traits and skills like flexibility, focus on standard of service, systematic goal implementation, teamwork, efficiency, decision-making competence and conflict management are ideal for people who make strategic decisions and take on lead roles in modern organisations. Yet it is apparently difficult for women to decide in favour of a job in logistics, and “logistics manager” would therefore appear to be an almost unheard-of career aspiration for half of the population. This is not necessarily surprising, as there are very few role models for female career paths in logistics. The greater visibility of women who have made successful careers for themselves in the field would encourage others to also consider the sector as an option – in keeping with the motto “If she can see it, she can be it”.