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Chief Operating Officer (gn)

  • Referenz: 399767
  • Vertragsart: Permanent
  • Gehalt: Competitive Salary Package

  • Ort: Germany / Home-Office

The Company

General Setup

Historically the CWS Group consisted of 4 businesses (divisions) Hygiene (HYG), Workwear (WW), Cleanrooms and Fire Safety that were run under the CWS Group umbrella and a CWS International GmbH legal entity. Whereas Fire Safety and Cleanrooms were mostly “stand-alone” in terms of operations setup and legal entity structure, Hygiene and Workwear had multiple interdependencies (e.g. common legal entity structure, common logistics backbone, partially common laundries).


HYG Business Model

CWS HYG is a route-based B2B business that rents washroom dispensers/mats (e.g. soap dispenser) to over 300k customers in over 15 countries. In a rental contract, the customer pays a certain fee for the dispenser and for weekly/bi-weekly delivery of consumables (soap, toilet paper, cotton roll). The value chain of CWS HYG evolves around sales (sales team sells the rental contract to a customer), technical service (team mounts the dispenser on the wall), laundry (mats, hygiene boxes, cotton towel rolls are washed and repaired), service logistics (a service logistic driver delivers consumables or clean mat/towel roll from over 150 decentral depots to the customer and stores them in a dedicated place), customer care (if customer has requests, complains, questions a customer care team is available for process these). In principle, the backbone of the company is the logistics & supply (first-level logistic from central warehouse to decentral depots and second-level from decentral depots to customers) with over 1850 FTEs out of the overall 3500 FTEs in HYG. The laundries are the second operational backbone with approx. 500 FTEs. Running an excellent service logistics organisation is crucial for customer satisfaction – delivering “on time in full”. Running this very large cost base (200m€ cost) efficiently is crucial for profitability.
CWS HYG operates in a matrix organization. The regions (DE, NL/SW, BE/Lux, CH, AT/CEE/IRE) are directly responsible for sales, customer care and service logistics (2nd-level logistic = last mile). The divisional functions have certain direct responsibility (e.g. laundries, central warehouse, product development) but mostly act as excellence functions.

The Role

We are seeking a dynamic and results-driven Chief Operating Officer (COO) (m/f/d) to join the Executive Member Board, leading the operational functions and driving the implementation of strategic goals. The COO will play a pivotal role in managing and optimizing service delivery processes, enhancing customer experiences, and ensuring operational efficiency across all areas of the company.

Key Responsibilities

  • Establish an efficient optimized depot footprint according to best practice from companies with similar setup (depot network optimization according to logistic-specific KPIs)
  • Design and implement best-in class and automated logistic processes within the depots (depot of the future) including technical specifics (technical and “flow of goods” layout e.g. ramps, commissioning, picks…), automation (of e.g. commissioning picks, loading and unloading of vans), service-specific software tools (service driver applications that optimize tours, tools navigating where washrooms of customers are, track and trace of the future to avoid loss of goods) and logistic-specific lean methods
  • Leading the development of an efficient service and logistics organization
  • Migrate to e-fleet and e-fuels requiring strong expertise in existing and future technologies as well as knowhow in implementing (availability of charging stations, optimized tour planning to reflect reach of e-vehicles…)
  • Guidance for the introduction and use of digital tools and AI in service and logistics
  • Operational Leadership: Provide strategic direction and leadership to international operational teams, aligning them with company objectives, including areas such as supply chain, logistics (service), and procurement
  • Process Optimization: Evaluate and continuously improve operational processes, workflows, and systems to enhance efficiency, reduce costs, and overall effectiveness
  • Maximizing the variabilization of the currently existing fixed costs in service and logistics
  • Service Excellence: Foster a culture of service excellence, focusing on consistently delivering high-quality, customer-centric solutions
  • Cross-Department Collaboration: Collaborate closely with other senior executives to promote cross-departmental initiatives, ensuring seamless communication and alignment
  • Team Management: Lead, develop, and inspire a diverse team of operational professionals, creating a modern, collaborative, growth-oriented work environment
  • Risk Management: Identify potential operational risks and implement risk mitigation strategies to ensure business continuity and compliance with industry regulations
  • Innovation and Growth: Identify opportunities for innovation and expansion of our service offerings, contributing to the company's long-term growth strategy
  • Supplier and Partner Management: Develop and maintain strategic relationships with suppliers, vendors, and partners to optimize service delivery and enhance customer satisfaction

The Profile

  • Bachelor's degree in Business Administration, Operations Management, or a related field
  • Significant experience in a senior operational role, preferably in a service-oriented environment
  • Proven track record of optimizing operational processes and enhancing efficiency
  • Strong strategic thinking skills, with the ability to translate visions into actionable plans
  • Excellent leadership, communication, and interpersonal skills to inspire and motivate teams
  • Experience leading complex projects and teams
  • Solid understanding of financial principles and budget management
  • Results-oriented mindset with a focus on measurable outcomes
  • Proficiency in relevant software and tools for operations management
  • Fluent German and English language skills


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