Director Global IT at Bizerba
Bizerba is a familiar name within the food industry, offering customers in the industry, trade and logistics a globally unique portfolio of hardware and software around one central value: weight.
Products relating to slicing, processing, weighing, cashing, checking, commissioning and labeling are just some of those on offer, and that’s without going into the German firm’s consulting, maintenance and training services.
But behind every good company is a competent IT department, and behind every competent IT department is a strong leader.
At Bizerba, this responsibility falls to Prof Dr Christian Hürter, the company’s Director Global IT.
Dr Hürter joined the company just over two years ago, in February 2021, having served for three years as Managing Director at ZIP Software – which he co-founded – prior to its acquisition by the Würth Group.
Before that he was a Managing Director at Heinrich Schmid and spent time as a Senior Consultant and Manager at Mercedes-Benz.
Over the last five-and-a-half years, his professorship has seen him teach budding businesspeople about process management in small and medium enterprises (SMEs) at Baden-Wuerttemberg Cooperative State University, in Stuttgart, on a part-time basis.
Digital transformation part of Bizerba DNA
Evidently, key to Dr Hürter’s role at Bizerba is to try and respond and adapt to rapidly-evolving business requirements.
He highlights sustainability, digital transformation and the digital skills gap, which he refers to as the “war for talent”, as just some of the biggest challenges to overcome.
“We are seeing some important changes around us and I think it’s important that, in IT, we are grasping what’s happening on the market,” says Dr Hürter. “We have influences like sustainability which is just taking off and that is something we need to take care of everywhere in the company and of course in IT, too.
“We have this war for talents that is definitely affecting us in the IT organisation; we need to continuously ensure we have the right capabilities and stay ahead of our competitors in the market.”
Bizerba’s push for digital transformation falls under its I&T operating model, which has been coined by Gartner to describe that the scope extends beyond the boundaries of the IT organisation.
While digital transformation may once have been a department in itself, Dr Hürter says it must these days form part of an entire company’s DNA.
Bizerba in recovery mode
Dr Hürter does not shy away from the fact that Bizerba has been in recovery mode, having suffered a severe cyber attack last June.
However, the experience served as an opportunity for the company to learn and ‘build back better’, reinforcing its global infrastructure.
In fact, Dr Hürter grows discernibly excited when the topic of security is brought up, admitting it is his “favourite” part of the job.
He uses the analogy of security being like a fence surrounding Bizerba, with a need to ensure it reaches the same height all the way around.
Dr Hürter concludes: “Our duty in IT is to ensure we have the same fence height everywhere in the company, and it’s the duty of the Chief Information Security Officer to inspect the fence.”
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