Plantion’s fresh faces
Plantion has plenty of experienced, long-time employees. Even so, our site in Ede is home to an increasing number of ‘millennials’: young, ambitious employees who have a fresh take on things and want to use that to contribute to Plantion’s growth. This time, we’re talking to Mariska Maasse (22) and José Willemsen (28).
What do you do at Plantion?
‘Kristel Nijenhuis used do all of the Personnel & Organisation work on her own. A new hire was sorely needed, hence why I was hired. I started in March 2019, working three days a week. My position was newly created, so it still takes some figuring out every now and then, on Plantion’s side and mine. I mostly handle time registration, the logging of hours. Things do get messed up from time to time, and it’s important for us to keep on top of it, because this has repercussions for people’s pay checks and for security. After all, you want to be able to always know exactly who is in the building at any given time. I also handle payroll administration, including drawing up employment contracts and handling the administration for temporary hires. On top of that, I serve as a point of contact for all employees for their questions regarding P&O. Now that I’ve started finding my way, I’ve also begun taking on other projects, such as Plantion+, the organisation’s internal education offering.’
What were your expectations of working at Plantion when you started?
‘I had two interviews before I was hired, which made me feel very comfortable. The atmosphere was very friendly – I could tell from the way people interacted with one another. After the first couple of days at work, I could tell that my initial hunch had been correct. Plantion is a great place to work. Everyone makes time for one another and keeps an eye out for one another. It’s a big building and there’s lots of employees, but I’ve still gotten to know lots of people in a short amount of time, much faster than I’d anticipated. Everyone is very involved, which makes it easier to get things done together and keep moving forward.’
‘THE VARIED WORK MAKES IT INTERESTING’
What does Plantion have to offer for your career?
‘The very varied work makes it very interesting for me. I like working on administrative stuff, but also talking to people, being part of working groups and collaborating on thinking of procedures. There are plenty of improvements to be made – we’re a little old-fashioned in certain areas. For example, we would do well to do more things digitally, because it’s just easier and more efficient that way. But of course, we have to make sure that everyone in the organisation is able to keep up with those digital developments.’
What are your duties?
‘I am part of the administrative department, where I provide support for relationship management; whenever there are registrations, deregistrations or other changes, I am responsible for processing them. I also handle the administration of our member capital and the Danish trolleys, and am involved with a number of projects as trainee. This allows me to learn how things are done in other departments and get to know the organisation on a broader level.’
What are you involved in?
‘One example is the working group I am involved in that aims to maintain the auction clock’s position. The role of the clock is changing and remote buying is becoming more popular – in short, demand is changing. We try to figure out improvements that can be made on the supply side of things, and things we can do to service our buyers better. I look at things from a business operations perspective and see the bigger picture by always being critical and continuing to ask questions. For example, a co-worker and I came up with the idea to start working with progress reports.
Who do you learn a lot from?
‘I work with Manon Janssen, the financial manager, a lot, and learn a lot from her. She always thinks a few steps ahead. This is very helpful, such as for the Transport project, which I am heading. We will be looking at how we can take care of more of our buyers’ needs in the transport stage. This project is still in the early stages, so it’s great to be able to spar about it with Manon every now and then. She’ll ask me, ‘Why are we doing this, and what is it that our buyers are really asking for?’ If you keep those kinds of things in the back of your mind, the final result ends up being better.’
‘MORE STEERING BASED ON DATA, LOOKING TO THE FUTURE’
What other opportunities do you think there are for Plantion?
‘Plantion has a great deal of information at its disposal, which you could do a lot more with than we are currently doing. Looking to the future, we should be steering based on data a lot more, as opposed to on the gut feelings or knowledge of our employees. There’s a lot to be gained in the field of data gathering and automation.’