The huge ships are both the most interesting and the most challenging aspect of his job. Olaf Sander has been responsible for seaborne handling at Container Terminal Burchardkai (CTB), the HHLA terminal with the most mega-ship calls and highest capacity, since January 2018. At peak times, this means a lot of work for Sander. You can read about the work here:
After Sander completed his training as a maritime goods inspector in Bremen in 2000, he worked as a tallyman in all of the Unterweser ports before he came to the North Sea Terminal Bremerhaven in 2007. For personal reasons he chose to move from the river Weser to the river Elbe in Hamburg in 2015. He joined HHLA as a shift leader at CTB, and he looks back on this decision as one of the best decisions in his career.
The tall man with the shaggy seaman’s beard from Lower Saxony particularly enjoys the camaraderie with his fellow employees. And he has plenty of opportunity to enjoy their company, being responsible for approximately 450 employees. In order to memorise all their names and faces quickly he attends all group meetings and regularly works the night shift. “A functioning system and high-performance technology are important, but the people are the most interesting aspect of my work.”
He has to assign the personnel available in such a way that the largest ships in the world are handled both reliably and efficiently, “all while the facility is continually expanded to deal with rising peak loads,” adds Sander. “One interesting aspect of the job is the steady stream of unplanned events to which we have to respond quickly.”