The sales department of a. hartrodt in Sydney (Australia) has recently been under female leadership: Sales Manager Christine Durnall has been heading the sales team at the headquarters of the Australian national company since mid-April 2021. Previously, Durnall worked for an international logistics company in Sales and Key Account Management for almost five years. The mother of three has a Bachelor's degree in Economics and has been familiar with the operational freight forwarding business for 20 years. At a. hartrodt, she pursues a "strong customer focus" and wants to "generate focused new business with improved efficiency". In Australia, a. hartrodt has 160 employees at five locations.
Lockdown since mid-June
Due to Corona, however, Durnall's start at a. hartrodt turned out differently than expected. Since mid-June, the Sydney metropolis of 5 million people has been in lockdown which will extend at minimum until the end of September. "Our office remains open with skeleton staff, and our 7,000-square meter warehouse is also operational," Durnall says. She usually enjoys meeting people who appreciate her sense of humor. "Building relationships on the phone or over Webex is more difficult," she thinks.
LCL consolidation service as alternative
Durnall also sees opportunities in the pandemic: "At the moment, people can be willing to change their service provider more quickly." She attributes this to many issues, such as a lack of container equipment or capacity bottlenecks in sea and air freight. "As an alternative to the unpredictable full container market, we specifically offer LCL consolidation service which can keep freight moving," she points out. a. hartrodt Australia is strongly positioned in the Food & Beverage sector handling wine exports, a range of food imports, as well as Industrial machinery, retail and other key import commodities. Through professional experience in Europe and the USA, Durnall knows Australia's import requirements come with peculiarities: "Australian Border Force can be more complicated; and, especially in the current climate, there are less carrier options serving the Oceania market."
While Durnall expects industry problems to continue in the medium term, she hopes Australia's economy will pick up by the end of the year. As a long-term goal, she wants to "significantly grow the branch" and develop her team.