Meantime Blog


News, views, insights, and musings from the Meantime teamon the world of PR, logistics, and Royal Greenwich

Embracing the paradigm shift in air cargo with KLM’s Kester Meijer


We need you to challenge our thinking and invent 21st century logistics in a responsible way.

Meantime Communications’ successful campaign #MeantimePR last month gave us the opportunity to have a conversation with the accomplished and experienced Kester Meijer, a member of the KLM Cargo management team. Kester works at KLM Cargo as Director Operational Integrity, Compliance & Safety.

In our Q&A Kester shares his insights on air cargo, especially on compliance and safety, and talks about how the industry is facing a positive paradigm shift.

Q: What is the one thing that you wish people would talk more about in the air cargo industry?

A: Trust! We all are proud of being a relation-based industry and yet operate in a very siloed manner. If we really want to make the air cargo supply chain future proof, the public and private key stakeholders and experts should discuss how to leverage the sum of all relations to tackle the mutual challenges ahead. We are attempting to solve ‘our’ proprietary piece of the puzzle and that hampers progress. Of course, there is sensitive data but not everything is sensitive and sharing it in a truly open way would lower the mistakes and grow the reliability of the networked supply chain. Let’s begin with trust and then decide what we cannot share, instead of the other way around.

Q: If not the air cargo industry which industry would you have chosen to have a career in?

A: I started out in IT, moved to supply chain and I am now active in the Compliance & Safety side of our industry. I am fascinated by these three themes coming together in an era of building eco-systems combined with blockchain, AI and IoT tech.

That aside, I would probably want to be a world famous chef with my own illustrated cookbook!

Q: What has been your biggest learning in the time you’ve worked in this industry?

A: It is all about the people and how we shape our relations. The other aspect is knowledge. If one is able to recognize the other person and his/her expertise we can have a fantastic time and create excellent solutions for our customers.

Q: What has been the biggest challenge working in the compliance and safety side of the air cargo industry?

A: The continuous changing geopolitical scenery and tension, where we all are facing an increasing number of contradicting regulations, including the potential severe impact of a small mistake within the huge volumes we are moving.

As for safety, recently we witnessed the Nobel prize in chemistry being awarded to three scientists for their work in developing lithium-ion batteries. I just wish there was more focus on the safety side of these products and battling manufacturing, selling and shipping (by air) of these counterfeit lithium batteries.

Q: What advice would you give the next generation looking to enter this industry?

A: Join! Do not hesitate! It is an amazing industry with fantastic people, and so much needs to be done… so you can make the difference! And we need you to challenge our thinking and invent 21st century logistics in a responsible way.

 

Kester Meijer has extensive knowledge and experience in Air Cargo Supply Chain Logistics, Compliance and ICT. He strongly believes our industry is in an era of a paradigm shift, where Data, Artificial Intelligence, Internet of Things and Blockchain will provide new ways to collaborate and connect. The future of Smart Borders and Air Cargo is to pre-check everything upstream and ensure a smooth shipment journey.


About the author

Rose Ann Francis

Rose Ann was born the year Halley's Comet visited our solar system for the second time. A Jane of all trades, she got a Masters in Biotechnology and pursued a career in marketing & communications. After excelling as an editor and an advertising executive she is now expertly navigating the world of social media.


Meantime Blog


News, views, insights, and musings from the Meantime teamon the world of PR, logistics, and Royal Greenwich

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About the author

Rose Ann Francis

Rose Ann was born the year Halley's Comet visited our solar system for the second time. A Jane of all trades, she got a Masters in Biotechnology and pursued a career in marketing & communications. After excelling as an editor and an advertising executive she is now expertly navigating the world of social media.