Christian Jabs works in Sales & Supply Chain Management. Together with his team, Jabs ensures that Materials Services customers have all the materials they need in the right quantities at the right time and in the right place. And preferably in a highly efficient manner. And of course the CO2 footprint should be as low as possible. To this end, the segment has founded a start-up, thyssenkrupp Materials DataflowWorks, which is developing the solution further and is currently preparing the market launch.

Sounds complicated. Jabs clarifies: "We are working together with our customers on the world of tomorrow. We network wherever we can. We design processes collaboratively and transparently so that we are able to maximize all potential along the supply chain." And that is only possible with modern and, above all, digital technologies.

One of these technologies is the product pacemaker®. It consists of an artificial intelligence (AI)-based solution that can use historical data to make accurate predictions about potential demand. The historical data is based on requests and transport routes from customers. "Here, humans and top technology machines work hand in hand," says project manager Jabs. The solution can thus lead to significant resource savings.

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High-bay warehouse at Materials Services

However, this optimization is not just about economic benefits and the availability of materials, the expert explains. "In addition to inventory optimization, our goal is primarily to reduce our customers' C02 footprint," Jabs explains. Thanks to integrated AI, pacemaker® has many advantages: "We can predict future demand, incorporating past values. The system is updated on a daily basis so that a continuous and automated learning process can take place," says Jabs. pacemaker® is not only being used by some internal customers, but is also to be marketed as a stand-alone product for external customers. The focus is to be on the automotive and aviation industry markets that are close to existing customers.

For Jabs, it is clear what logistics work will look like in 50 years: transparent, digital and innovative! Artificial intelligence plays a major role in this in his eyes, but the expert also makes it clear: "AI is only as good as its data basis. Humans set the direction, and the machine learns." The fear that the advancing digitalization and development of intelligent technologies could displace jobs is therefore unfounded in his view. "Humans will have to continue to orchestrate everything in the future," says Jabs. "The art of dealing with data will become increasingly important." That's why the expert sees jobs in the future especially where complex data sets need to be handled - for example, as data scientists.

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