Career stories

Johanna Harjula, mechanical designer

Johanna graduated as a mechanical and production engineer from Lahti University of Applied Sciences and spent a few years working elsewhere. However, she continued to browse job advertisements. Comatec seemed the best option, and she was also attracted to Tampere as a location. The laid-back atmosphere, friendly colleagues and competitive salary convinced her to choose Comatec, and Johanna became a Comatec employee in October 2017.

Johanna was also interested in new challenges and decided to continue her studies in mechanical engineering at Tampere University in 2018, alongside her work as a design engineer at Comatec. “Combining work and study is demanding, but also very rewarding. It has also been great to see how flexibly the working environment has enabled me to focus on several efforts at the same time,” Johanna says.

Johanna is currently finalising her thesis, which she is writing as an assignment for one of Comatec’s customers. Johanna says that the place of education or the degree completed only matter to a certain extent. “What you know is more important, and your willingness to learn and develop is even more important.”

Johanna feels that her professional skills have improved at Comatec. Her tasks as a mechanical designer have become more challenging as her expertise has increased. “I have nice supervisors and colleagues at Comatec. Working with them is easy, and they also provide help and advice. I can always count on them,” Johanna says.

Her duties are flexible and varied, which she also likes. In the future, Johanna wants to further diversify her duties to include working with customers, for example. “More challenging jobs are also available within the company. Your wishes and plans are heard, and you will be given more responsibility. Competence development is offered through additional training and systematic induction and by sharing expertise. These are all important aspects.”

What would you like to say to someone who is considering a job at Comatec?

“The company offers challenging and varied work, as well as opportunities for development, in addition to a laid-back, highly competent workplace community. You’ll enjoy coming to work every morning!”

Leng An, test engineer

Test engineer Leng An from Hyvinkää took an interest in technology and natural sciences in upper secondary school. After completing his military service, he worked as a bartender in a business run by his family for a couple of years, until his parents suggested that he should consider technology as a career. In 2004, he was accepted to study electrical engineering at Stadia University of Applied Sciences, where he chose electronics as his major subject and automation as his minor subject.

He got his first job during his studies. However, a few years after graduation, he had to prioritise his health for a while. Quitting the job felt bad, and the future seemed uncertain, but Leng decided to take a six-month break from work. He started to look for new training opportunities.

When Leng was browsing job advertisements three months after quitting his job, two ads stood out, one of which had been run by Comatec. Leng decided to apply for both jobs, because their requirements matched his expertise and interests.

He received a call from Comatec soon after submitting his application. The first interview went so well that the supervisor immediately arranged a meeting for Leng with the customer on whose project the engineer to be hired would work. The pieces fell into place, and Leng An signed an employment contract with Comatec in March 2012. He has worked for the same customer since then – only the business unit has changed because of acquisitions made by the customer.

Leng’s work as a consulting test engineer is very independent. In his previous job, his tasks were predetermined, but a consultancy such as Comatec requires a more independent approach. Leng An identifies new testing tasks independently, chooses the measuring devices, plans the test schedules and takes care of reporting and collecting feedback.

Leng’s initiative is also reflected in his way of informing his supervisor about training opportunities that would support him in his duties. Comatec encourages employees to further develop their professional skills and offers opportunities for additional training provided in-house or by third parties.

In addition to training opportunities, the good working atmosphere and great colleagues have kept Leng with Comatec for more than nine years. He recommends Comatec especially for recently graduated engineers who are not yet certain about their career path.

“At Comatec, you can gain work experience in many fields within the same company. In other words, you don’t need to have definite career plans when applying for a job here. You can also develop in accordance with your interests and affect your own work schedule and learning,” Leng explains.

Kari-Pekka Lakela, mechanical designer

Mechanical designer Kari-Pekka Lakela hails from Sodankylä in Finnish Lapland. He lives in Lempäälä with his family and works for Comatec in Tampere.

He started his career in the catering and construction sectors. He has also worked as a system expert in the IT sector, in addition to running a business providing industrial services. Before becoming a mechanical designer, he worked as a CNC machinist for one and a half years, after graduating from the Tampere Adult Education Centre.

In 2017, he was accepted to study mechanical engineering in a multiform learning programme at Tampere University of Applied Sciences. In August 2018, he noticed that Comatec was looking for a machine designer. The job advertisement piqued his interest, because he had previously attended a presentation by Comatec at the university. The person who gave the presentation later became Kari-Pekka’s supervisor.

Kari-Pekka has been in the same team since joining Comatec. However, his duties have changed. His expertise in IT has been beneficial in connection with design system updates, for example. He has been given more responsibility as his skills have improved. He has prepared user manuals and provided younger designers with induction training, for example.

“A large company like Comatec offers a wide range of roles and tasks. You are also offered training opportunities based on the potential you have shown. During my latest annual performance appraisal, my supervisor suggested that I could take more responsibility for projects. We immediately began to seek project management courses that I could attend after restrictions related to the pandemic are lifted,” Kari-Pekka says.

Kari-Pekka thanks his supervisor for highly competent supervisory work, and his team for excellent collaboration. The time he has spent as a designer at Comatec has been rewarding, thanks to its variety.

“Comatec is one of the best workplaces I have had during my career. We are treated as individuals, and you can always count on your team. The whole organisation has a hands-on approach and a great team spirit. Senior design engineers share their practical experience, and younger ones help with new systems. I enjoy solving problems and contributing to progress, so I’m always happy to share my expertise within the company.”