For SCHOLPP’s international fitters, no distance is too great. All over the world, they transport and install machinery and plant that are key to keeping industrial companies moving. In addition to expertise and professionalism, this also requires a great deal of passion, open-mindedness and leadership skills on the ground. One of these international movers is Jens Kielmann from Chemnitz.
There are routines in Jens Kielmann’s daily work that are always the same – coffee in the morning, checking emails, talking to the rigging foreman, discussing and coordinating the goals for the day, driving to the construction site. But that’s where the predictability ends. Whether Chemnitz-born Kielmann will spend the next few weeks in the hot desert sands of Saudi Arabia or in the cold expanse of North America can rarely be planned in advance over the long term. “I love that variety, not knowing what’s round the corner. That’s what’s so exciting about my job,” explains the 36-year-old as he recalls his first assignment abroad.
That was in Marseille in 2011. The trained mechatronics technician traveled to the Mediterranean coast in France with two rigging foremen and two fitters. Kielmann remembers: “There was a ship in the dry dock there that had been wrecked at sea. The electric drive including the rotor – that’s the part of the engine that moves the propeller – had to be completely replaced. To do that, we set up a hydraulic lifting gantry. It was a fantastic job and incredibly interesting for me.” Although they were unfortunately not able to spend the night on the ship, the French port city still offered ample distractions to pass the time after work. “The variety with constantly new challenges, equipment and colleagues with whom you have to find smart solutions, that’s right up my street – and it still is today,” Kielmann enthuses.
At work around the world
Since then, Jens Kielmann can be found wherever machines need to be dismantled, relocated, installed and set up again. First as an apprentice, then as a skilled worker, later as a fitter and now – after proving himself many times over – as an electrical site manager. His focus is not only on expert installation, but also on the well-being of his staff – because the working conditions are sometimes not for the faint-hearted.
“In the Arabian desert, not far from Mecca, you can get a bit hot in August,” Kielmann remarks with a smile, adding: “The project there involved the assembly and electronic wiring of a flight simulator for the Eurofighter. Technically, it was really interesting, but it was a real test of stamina. And the differences between local mentalities and cultures are often a challenge in themselves. Keeping an eye on all that is part of my job as site manager.”
“I know where I come from”
This was no different in his many assignments all over Europe, in China, the US and Singapore. He often spent months leading international teams of 20 people from five nations who communicated with each other in English. For all his cosmopolitanism, however, the likable Chemnitz native has always remained close to home: “I love traveling the world and seeing challenging projects through. But I also know where I come from, where my friends live and where I always like to go back to.”
Once the pandemic is under control, it’ll be time for Jens Kielmann to set off again on a new mission: into the desert, into the cold, or wherever work takes him.