Dispatcher's job is one of the most dynamic in the port

The Port of Klaipėda has something magical and attractive in itself. It is a space that is associated with constant movement, engaging tasks, continuous development and, above all, unique professions. One of these is a data entry operator, also known as a dispatcher. We talked about the subtleties of the profession with one of the dispatchers at Malkų Įlankos Terminal, UAB (futher - MIT) - Iveta Kelnerytė. 
- How did your professional career start?
I come from a small town in Pagėgiai, where I grew up and finished my education. Back then, I had no idea or vision that my career path could be related to Klaipėda, let alone a seaport. However, as life happened, I started my job search in the western region of Palanga, where I was looking for seasonal summer work. As my sister lives in Klaipėda, she offered me to stay with her after my seasonal job, so I started looking for a job in the port city and saw a job advertisement for a data entry operator (dispatcher) at the Malkų Įlankos Terminal. I took part in the selection process and was offered to join the team at MIT.
- What was your start and first impressions at the loading terminal?
Although there was a lot of new information in the early days, it was a smooth start to the company. The team was friendly, helped me to understand more about the job and the responsibilities and answered any questions I had. I admire the fact that the company is open to welcoming young people who are still trying to get a foothold in the job market after finishing their studies.
The loading terminal itself took my breath away, because it was like something out of a movie, with lots of action, all sorts of cargo, road transport, large ships and an unfathomable amount of space. Also, the machinery with which my colleagues at the terminal were working was unprecedented, so I was very surprised by the size of the cranes, the amount of machinery and, most importantly, the people who were working on it, because they seemed to be operating it in a very simple way, which would have been impossible for me to operate.
- Could you briefly describe the job functions and responsibilities of a data entry operator?
This is the person who is responsible for issuing arrival/departure permits for customer transport to/from the terminal, registering the arrival and departure of cargo by heavy road, entering data into the system for cargo arriving or departing by rail wagon and for cargo loaded by ship. He is also responsible for the daily production of reports both internally and for customers and for working directly with the incoming road transport drivers.
- The impression is that the data entry operator is in a constant flow of events.
Yes, that is correct, because the dispatcher's work is intense. For example, on average, we receive and handle around 150 to 200 incoming and outgoing vehicles at the terminal every day. In addition to registering the vehicles in the system, we are also in active contact with customers who come to the terminal because they have various questions about where to take the goods, which warehouse to go to, etc. It is good to see that in the three years of work, the MIT has got to know most of the drivers who come to the terminal, so the cooperation is fast and with mutual trust.
- What skills and qualities are necessary for success as a dispatcher?
You must be able to coordinate a variety of activities quickly and simultaneously, which means you must be responsible, attentive, meticulous to detail and keen to communicate. It is also very important to be able to work well with various computer programmes.
On the other hand, my example proves that, even if you have no professional experience, if you want to improve, you can learn anything. The profession of a data entry operator is not a medical profession, where it is vital to have a full knowledge of human anatomy, because human life depends on it. You may not know everything at once, but it is important to remember that there is a team of colleagues around you who can always be consulted.
- How long does it take to train a person with no experience to become an independent data entry operator?
It all depends on a person's receptivity to knowledge and his or her inner ambition to quickly learn the subtleties of the profession. I started working on my own after a month and a half, but I had both feet firmly on the ground and was able to work confidently on my own after 4 months. Although it must be borne in mind that even today, after 3 years as a dispatcher, I still have questions that I don't have answers to. However, it is important to know where to turn to when you have a question and you will always get an answer that will increase your level of knowledge even further.
- How do you manage to relax after a busy day?
Working days vary from calm to very dynamic, so my inner mood also varies from wanting to go home and rest or, conversely, to get in my favourite vehicle, the car, and go wherever I want, because I love to drive. I find the best way to relax behind the wheel is to travel by car in different seasons to different places and countries.
- Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
I see myself very clearly growing and developing together with the wonderful team at MIT in five years. I really appreciate that the management of the MIT believed in me and allowed me to gain professional knowledge when I did not have it. Therefore, young people who dream of working for a port company without any professional experience should be brave, curious and inquisitive, because this is where the opportunities and prospects for the future are.
<< Return | Date: 2024.06.28

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