Meet Our People: Customs Support IT and Customs Consultant Jaap van den Boogert
In our series #WeAreCustomsSupport, you will meet the people behind Customs Support. We value our colleagues and the work they do. In this series, we will interview the people that are always ready to assist you and help you import or export your goods without worries. Next up in this series is one of our latest hires: Customs Support IT and Customs Consultant Jaap van den Boogert.
Who are you?
“My name is Jaap van den Boogert. I was born, raised, and educated in Rotterdam. I still live in Rotterdam with my girlfriend Miryea and our dog Dexter.”
What did you do before you joined Customs Support?
“Straight after graduating at the Shipping and Transport College in Rotterdam I started working at a freight forwarder in the Waalhaven (Waal Port) in Rotterdam. We arranged the transportation of outsized cargo. I learned to be flexible and adapt to changing circumstances. It was actually the first time that I came into contact with Customs Support, who were their primary customs partner at the time. After two years I set up a new 4PL provider specializing in shipping perishables. A year later I started working for another forwarder specializing in oil & gas logistics. While all of these roles were challenging and instructive, I missed an environment that was innovating and disruptive. I joined Shypple, an online forwarder doing just that, as operations manager. As Head of Operations I maintained 20% month over month growth, while expanding and stabilizing the platform.
So you already knew Customs Support?
“Yes. I came into contact with Customs Support at the start of my career when I needed advice on one of my shipments and since that time they have moved with me as a customs partner to every other company I joined. I liked the direct approach and the short lines of communication. I got to know both the company and the people better and better, and finally decided to join the company when I saw an opportunity that was perfect for me.”
What is your new role at Customs Support?
“I am an IT & Customs Consultant. I will be working on improving and expanding Custom Support’s online customer portal and other projects bringing Customs Support into the next phase of digitization. Digitization of customs processes will mean a change in the way some customers are working. I will help them with the transformation of their processes, increasing their efficiency and streamlining their processes. And I won't be doing that alone, but together with the IT team.”
What do you like most about your job?
“I like building and improving, and that is an important part of my job. Implementing a new platform across Europe, onboarding many different customers and working with many different people and different cultures. Scaling digital operations.”
What does a typical day for you look like?
“About 30 percent of my time is scheduled for meetings with customers, our teams, management, or other stakeholders inside or outside of Customs Support. About 40 percent of my time is dedicated to developing, improving, designing, and structuring the new platform, working on roadmaps and onboarding new clients. The remaining 30 percent is operational daily business, answering questions and solving issues.”
What is one of the biggest challenges?
“My personal challenge is always to outgrow my role and learn and execute new tasks. Maybe that sounds like a weird thing to say at the start of a new job, but I want to keep growing. Customs Support is a fast-growing organization and has an international focus. Both of these characteristics are great for someone like me. Great opportunities for growth.”
And what if you are not at work?
“I love taking my beagle Dexter for a walk, and I’m an avid runner and road cyclist. We live in an apartment, so we don’t have a backyard. To compensate for that we got an allotment closeby and I love spending time in our garden we created there. When the weather allows it you can find me there reading a book in my hammock.
I also launched a new personal project last year, which I have called Oudio, which combines the words Oud (Dutch for Old) and Audio. The project is about helping older people record something they want to leave behind for future generations. This can be anecdotes from their personal history or life lessons they want to pass on. I interview them and create recordings for them to share with their loved ones.”
What a beautiful idea! Final question: why Customs Support?
“I already know Customs Support for over 9 years. They were always a big help and had excellent service. I enjoyed working with the people that I encountered over the years and always appreciate the “roll up your sleeves and get cracking” mentality.
Also, I finally get the chance to work at a company that sells its own service. At a freight forwarder, you usually don’t own the services you sell, which makes it so much harder to improve and develop them. I’m very much looking forward to the opportunity to improve and develop our own services.”