From Fuerstenau into the whole world
Meurer service technicians in action
They wear a kind of uniform – blue with red letters. They are qualified. They provide installation support and they maintain, and they do it all over the world. High-quality machines and precision tools are their domain. Home-base staff provides for coordination and supplies. But they do not belong to any international special unit of the army. Neither were they committed by the Bundestag. They are rather acting on behalf of the meurer company, the specialist for final packaging systems based in Fürstenau. That’s the company those experts work for.
One thing at a time, though: Since 1969 meurer has been producing final packaging machines, selling them in Germany, Europe and overseas. "The quantity of orders is especially rising in non-European countries", says Hartmut Kamper, the company’s service manager. This is easy to explain. According to him, those countries are on the path towards economic growth. Asian countries in particular are booming. But also countries from the Arabian region or from South America such as Brazil are increasingly ordering those machines “Made in Fürstenau”. The machines travel the world – together with their mechanics, called service technicians. Those experts install the high-tech machines, run them in and train the staff of the ordering companies. The service technicians also maintain the machines and repair them if necessary. Service is essential, service pays.
The meurer people are qualified industrial mechanics, electrical and electronics installers or mechatronics engineers. Further training at meurer prepares them for the job abroad. “In the beginning our technicians do not travel unaccompanied”, assures Hartmut Kamper. According to him, a service technician only takes over jobs if he feels up to it.
In the meantime, the colleagues at home attend to logistics. While part of the staff makes travel arrangements such as visas, flight tickets and hotel accommodation the other part of the staff sees to the shipment of machines and spare parts which have to reach the country of destination bang on time so that the technicians can do their job. As we all know – time is money. The coordinating office at meurer is available 24 hours a day and 7 days a week – ensuring around-the-clock availability for the service technicians and of course for the customers.
“We also keep in touch with the Federal Foreign Office and observe the travel advices when making the travel arrangements for jobs abroad” explains Sylke Schröer, travel coordination manager. According to her, a company doctor supports professional health advice, assesses the vaccination need and hands out first-aid kits.
Last but not least there are the cultural differences. In order to spare the technicians any mistakes they are taught all necessary rules of conduct – specifically tailored to the country in question. “The customer might provide the technician on site with an advisor who will also help in behavioural questions”, says Andreas Thele, the service department’s chief technician. However – minor mistakes will absolutely be tolerated as the customer really does appreciate the technicians’ presence on site, according to Andreas Thele.
And what does the technician’s everyday life abroad look like? Of course, first of all they have to do their job. But there is still time for the country and its people. Due to the fact that the meurer people work together with the locals they often gain insights that mostly remain hidden for tourists. So an international soccer match between Vietnamese and German technicians is what might happen, as well as joint trips and sightseeing in Brazil or romantic relationships finally leading to a marriage. In any case the technicians will bring home one thing: extraordinary experience. Whether it is about left-hand traffic, exotic food with underestimated spiciness or about different dialects.
Moreover the meurer service technicians point out that they value the autonomous kind of working and the daily challenges. A high level of organisation, professionalism and personality is required. The service technicians agree that each colleague will enormously broaden his horizon like that, from a professional and a personal point of view.
By the way: new colleagues are always welcome. In times when there is a shortage of skilled workers meurer is interested in keeping young talent. In return they offer high-quality training and insights into new worlds, according to the staff.
Every packaging machine is an indivual solution for end-of-line-packaging.
meurer service technicians take care about whole lines of secondary packaging machines, from installation to maintenance.