Transport planning: are you up for a new challenge?


From A to B: optimal transport planning is a world-class challenge. Samskip is not an “average” transport company, but a multimodal shipping company involved in the entire transport process, from start to finish. Transport planning in a multimodal environment: do you have what it takes?

The connection between transport planning and road transport is easily made. Samskip combines trucks with barges and rail modalities. The dynamics of these modalities is what makes transport planning such an interesting job.

Transport planning

‘A day without planning, is a day wasted'- A saying which definitely applies to transport planning. Our planners are the beating heart of our organisation. Agreements with customers are completely worthless if there are no means in place to make them happen.

“Factoring in checks is absolutely essential; you can do so by gradually sharing information, rather than doing so all at once.”

Each team has its own priority: from truck planning in Rotterdam and intermodal transport from and to Switzerland, Austria and South Germany, to barge transports between the Netherlands and Germany and rail transport to and from Italy. Forming part of a planning team like this means you will have your own route and you will try to plan the modalities to the best of your abilities. This requires specific knowledge, which you will continuously keep up to date. After all, transport must always be one uninterrupted process.

This makes it hard to cover each other's work. You all have your own routes and your own contacts. It's a major challenge to master other people's new schedules.

Connecting is key

The lines within an organisation like Samskip are longer and so are the links. Multimodal transport requires collaboration with colleague planners and other departments, such as Customer Services, in order to handle requests as quickly and cost-effectively as possible.

Even though you will not have direct contact with customers in your role as a planner, you will communicate on a large scale with drivers, transporters and colleagues from other national and international branches. You will be mainly in contact by phone or email, but sometimes you will also get to meet face to face. This will enable you to get to know each other and accomplish more.

“It's great to have contact with drivers from different transport companies. They are my drivers, driving part of my route. And you are the one making this happen.”

– Marcel Wijsman (Transport Planner)

Just like a puzzle

Transport planning is like jumping into the deep end; you will learn on the job and gain experience while planning. You will be coached and, if you want to be challenged even more, you can attend different training courses. You will be learning something new every day and this will make the job more challenging.

“Looking at what I've achieved in a year: I haven't been bored for a minute. It's truly amazing and you'll literally go from one thing to another.”

– Jordi van der Neut (Transport Planner)

In a world as unpredictable as transport, there is no such thing as perfect planning. Just like a row of dominoes will fall if you remove one, your planning will also shift as soon as delays occur. Factoring in margins can only go so far; most of the time you will just have to react quickly and find the best solution. You can compare it to a trade floor, where everyone is raising their hand and shouting. A bit chaotic, but very stimulating for many. Sometimes you will find the ideal combination of modalities. Though, the puzzle pieces won't always perfectly fit.

Working for Samskip

Transport planning is dynamic and challenging. It's fun, but it can also be emotional. A balance can be created through a joke; after all, there must be room for some light relief. Our height adjustable desks, plenty of healthy snacks and a nearby fitness centre all contribute to a healthy work environment.

“You'll be given the freedom to do the job how you see fit, offering you the opportunity to give the job your own twist. You'll be working with an amazing team, achieving the best possible results.”

– Bjorn Verheij (Transport Planner)

The Transport Planning department is one in which you will have a great deal of personal responsibility. You will get to meet other departments during outings, tournaments, and drinks. Allowing you to get to know each other in a different manner.

Whoever thinks transport planning is the final stop couldn't be more wrong. There is plenty of room to develop yourself at Samskip. If you have the ambition to grow, you can do so both horizontally and vertically.

Transport Planning is a puzzle; planning consists in putting together the jigsaw piece by piece until optimal planning has been created. No well-defined plans, but creating an insight into your best possible strategy. Forget about rules, forget about Sudoku: are you ready to plan your own route at Samskip?


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