Alex Potter
Process Analyst

Other Areas of Expertise

Alex is part of a team tasked with analyzing and streamlining processes across Thermotraffic. And in his view, the only way to do that is to visit the sites, talk to the employees and experience those processes for himself.

My background is in Mechanical Engineering and I gained a Masters in that subject from Strathclyde University. After graduation, I worked for a boutique consulting firm in London, on a project to reduce bureaucracy and streamline processes for a major car firm.

Dynamic application

I joined Thermotraffic, in July 2023. I was attracted to the role because it gave me an opportunity to apply my mechanical and engineering knowledge to the improvement of our cold store operations. Broadly speaking, this involves analyzing customer and service level profitability and developing ways to maximize operational efficiencies via warehousing automation. I also examine pricing situations and try to quantify services that are not easily quantified, such as labour-intensive processes and electricity use.

The best way to approach this is dynamically, through on-the-ground experience. So, I have visited all our cold store sites in the UK and performed all the warehousing tasks myself, from unloading the trucks to picking. I talk to employees and management to get their views and to learn about their problems.

Integrating best practices

All our sites are different and it’s interesting to see the various ways in which they approach processes. A key part of my role is to identify and learn about best practices, then integrate them across the company as we restructure and harmonize our component parts. Within that effort, I want to make life easier and safer for our cold store operatives. They work in challenging conditions of -20 and it’s important that we make things more comfortable and rewarding for them.

I am part of the Business Transformation and IT department. My focus is our UK cold stores, but my colleagues in the Netherlands are looking at other business processes. We work together and I visit the Netherlands regularly. Thermotraffic is a diverse company I enjoy the cultural differences and experiencing different foods and customs when I travel.

Access to learning and development

Of course, I didn’t know anything about logistics or cold stores when I joined the company. However, the opportunity to learn the subject was another factor that attracted me to the role, especially as Thermotraffic encourages extra-curricular personal development. In particular, the company makes it easy to access a vast range of courses via online resources.

To learn more about the sector we also visit cold chain logistics events. For instance, I attended a major event in Liverpool with my manager and management from the Netherlands where we saw presentations on dynamic warehousing systems. Events like that provide a deep dive into the industry in a short time and a great way of getting to know industry figures.

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