Frauke, plant manager of Baumer hhs GmbH in the city of Krefeld, is giving an insight in her tasks, daily challenges and the chance to actively shape the Baumer world:
Would you get us an idea of your job as plant manager?
As plant manager, the divisions development, order fulfillment, IT, quality management and project management come under my responsibility – I am, so to speak, the "Secretary of the Interior" at Baumer hhs GmbH. Together with the "Secretary of foreign affairs" who is responsible for sales and customer service, as well as the managing director, we form the management of Baumer hhs GmbH.
My working day characterizes by aligning operations and our strategic goals, e.g. how we streamline and digitize process flows, make decisions in steering committees, gather information in team meetings, track key figures, identify and initiate measures for improvement as well as how to lead and coach the five managers I am responsible for.
So to say, I am given an end-to-end overview on the entire value chain and our processes, from product design to manufacturing on to delivery. My main goal is to establish process-oriented, efficient working ways at Baumer hhs GmbH that are fast, lean and yet flexible enough to meet customer requirements in the best possible way. I see my responsibility in asking questions in order to understand contexts and to set impulses in the design of our processes and products, e.g. for in digitization of business processes and supply chain or for the development of digital services.
I am intensively dedicated to elaborating on strategies. Within my responsibilities I ensure that everything will go right in the implementation stage: that we get the right products at the right place in the right time and of the right quality and at the right cost. What has been a particular success and highlight for you so far?
A major success was that we brought process understanding into the organization. Being a developed mid-sized company, many things used to be done on request and rather spontaneously. Baumer hhs now is aligned to exponential growth and committed to implement such growth. Having streamlined extended processes while increasing productivity and production output by 15% is a real success to me.
Furthermore, building teams and watch them evolving positively, finding the players confronting changes, outgrowing themselves and revealing hidden strengths was particularly exciting for me. Being part of an excellently working team and having done my contribution – that’s what I'm really proud of. What are your daily challenges?
Facing new, diversified and interesting challenges every day – starting with strategy meetings in the morning on to HR topics, process development, make or buy decisions, certifications, audits, discussions with local economy promoters or even deciding on this year’s Christmas tree decoration and setup. As plant manager, you're a kind of "Jack of all trades".What is your personal motivation?
The Baumer hhs employees are incredibly motivated and give their best all day, and every day provides potential to make the good even better. Our motivated, committed employees, our customers and our products are my main motivation. On top, my multi-faceted activities give me the chance to learn every day, all this with great freedom in decision-making.How would you describe your approach of leadership?
To me, leadership means individual response to colleagues in a peer atmosphere full of trust in them and their work, and to put them on track to find solutions themselves by asking the relevant questions. We set out together to achieve results – corporate and personal ones. For doing so, we set our goals to enable everyone to perform to the best of his ability. Joint success is celebrated as a team. Personally to me, leadership means collecting regular feedback and keep on working actively on myself.What do you think is special about the products and the Baumer hhs environment?
Baumer hhs GmbH is world leader in glue application systems for the folding carton industry. In other words, every day you hold something in your hands that certainly was glued or checked by our systems – from pharmaceutical packaging to cereal boxes on to shipping cartons of large online companies. Our systems are precisely tailored to the needs of our customers. As a result, our product range provides very diversified levels. The challenge is to implement the lean methodology even in such extremely varied processes. We have to comply with the Baumer Group development standards, e.g. in terms of utilities, IT architecture or legal compliance. In parallel, we are "exotic" within the Group because both our product range and customer approaches are different from the "blue" Baumer world.
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