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  • On location with……… Michel Stekelenburg, President CSCMP Benelux Round Table

    Same as many other organizations, the Benelux Round Table of CSCMP has been challenged by COVID-19 and consequences in our daily lives and business. An interesting 2020 program with physical conferences and workshops suddenly had to be turned into a virtual set of events with a completely different focus. Who are the people behind this organization and network? Through a series of interviews, the Board of the CSCMP Benelux RT will be introduced and will tell about their passion and energy for supply chain, its developments and the CSCMP. 

    Michel Stekelenburg, President of the Benelux Round Table, has the honor to kick off!

    On location………

    Michel is born and raised in Rotterdam, at the heart of the logistics center of The Netherlands. Through his work and interests, he has a very international focus and seen already quite a few places in the world. It is therefor no surprise that Michel picked The Van Nelle Factory in Rotterdam as the location for this interview. This location is one of the Dutch’ predominant industrial monuments, where Van Nelle has been producing coffee, tea and tobacco and held strong trade relations with Dutch-Indonesia for centuries. That said, the Van Nelle complex really can be seen as a historical signature for The Netherlands and more specifically, Rotterdam in developing a strategic position when it comes down to international trade as well as the Port of Rotterdam establishing itself as the main hub for the European region.

    Who is Michel?

    Michel is a highly energetic worker, who truly believes in dedication, loyalty and transparency. A born networker, who loves sharing his knowledge and expertise to support others in achieving their goals. His main drivers are to connect and explore, how being able to add value by collaboration and creating win-win situations. After being an active member for a number of years, Michel joined the CSCMP Benelux RT as a Board Member back in 2017 and took over the role of President in 2019. In this role Michel’s primary objective is – supported by a team of passionate industry professionals – to further grow and professionalize the Benelux RT and focus on strengthening our position in the Benelux as the preeminent worldwide professional association representing nearly all industry sectors, government and academia from 67 countries. Social and empathic, who lives by the phrase ‘carpe diem’ and loves spending quality time with friends and family, as well as actively practicing different sports, like running, tennis, cycling and swimming. With that same drive and passion Michel heads the sales operations as Director Strategic Accounts EMEA at project44, the predominant leader in the Supply Chain Visibility Platform Technology industry, supporting carriers, LSPs and shippers in further digitizing their global end-to-end logistics processes, focused on boosting efficiency, reducing cost and creating a more competitive edge.

    What are in your view current opportunities and threat perspectives in supply chain?

    When zooming in on the latest trends in the Supply Chain Industry of today, Michel sees lots of opportunities. First of all, the SC industry is rapidly transforming from a silo- towards a more data driven industry. Collaboration is the new standard, a transformation primary driven by digitization focused on further improving the Customer Experience and the need to further optimize business processes to reduce cost and increase sustainability. This offers companies a unique opportunity to differentiate themselves and to better serve its clients in today’s Delivery Economy. On the other hand, this also comes with a certain amount of risk, whereas many companies are struggling how and where to start. Consequently, it is key for organizations to first develop a concrete Digitization Road Map to identify, which business areas will benefit most from digitization and to create a clear view on the costs vs benefits before getting started. This should be the starting point to start the digitization journey with key milestones to ensure a smooth adoption of new technologies. Last but not least, we also need to take into account that global disruptions – such as today’s Corona crisis – is not the first and certainly won’t be the last disruption having a significant impact on global supply chains.

    What role does the CSCMP Benelux RT play in these supply chain perspectives?

    The CSCMP Benelux RT operates under the umbrella of the CSCMP HQ, located in Chicago (US), and acts as one of the 80 roundtables globally connecting Supply Chain professionals with fellow industry professionals all over the world. By doing so the Benelux RT focuses on sharing the latest industry insights from both a Benelux, European and Global perspective by organizing groundbreaking industry events (e.g. webinars, roundtable discussions, conferences, etc). Besides organizing local events – with a strong focus on the Benelux region – and always striving to offer a global industry perspective and promoting the CSCMP Benelux RT as part of a global association, we regularly organize international industry events together with one of our fellow CSCMP RT’s (and/or global partners), where we invite international speakers to share their industry experts insights!

    How does the CSCMP Benelux RT distinguishes itself from other supply chain industry organizations?

    The CSCMP Benelux RT, founded back in 1999, has established itself as the leading Supply Chain networking organization in the Benelux with the primary objective – together with its partners – to offer an accommodating platform to connect with and share knowledge and industry insights to its members. Going forward and based on the CSCMP Benelux RT’s ambitions over the years, we are proud that the initial Benelux RT founders Jan Willem Proper, Jeroen Bolt and Sven Verstrepen are still active members of the Board and the CSCMP Benelux has evolved in being one of the most active RT’s in Europe. As a result, the CSCMP Benelux RT had the honor of hosting 2018’s CSCMP Annual European Conference at the Rotterdam WTC. Being part of the global CSCMP network, the Benelux RT is extremely accessible, whereas it operates as a non-profit organization and organizes lots of free and/or low-cost events, offering our members a unique platform to connect, educate and further develop themselves and others!

    Why should people and organizations associate with CSCMP?

    As a Supply Chain Professional (or Young Professional) it is extremely important to continue developing yourself and invest in creating a strong business network to support you in your career. That said, the CSCMP Benelux RT is the ideal accommodative platform providing you access to a global network of logistics, transportation and supply chain professionals, all willing to connect and support our members in any possible way. Additionally, the CSCMP Benelux RT regularly organizes groundbreaking events, addressing the latest trends from the industry and sharing valuable insights which significantly adds value in your growth as a SC professional.

    Next ‘On Location……’ Jochum Reuter, VP Membership.