Master of Osto – Juhani Ellä: “The ability to read the room and the product”

Juhani Ellä knows that the ability to read people and the manufactured equipment is emphasised in a purchaser’s work. Practical experience and reliable networks are the keys to success – the high Raumaster quality is visible in the entire delivery chain.

A purchaser is responsible for procuring the necessary equipment that match the quality requirements within the budget. This is how Purchaser Juhani Ellä summarizes the core of his job. He is one of the three Raumaster Paper Oy’s purchasers, and he is responsible for the procurement of packing machinery, such as winders.

After the equipment the customer will receive has been designed, Ellä begins the tendering process for the section that will be manufactured and purchases the components from the suppliers.

"In practice, I am involved from the moment the sales take place until the equipment has been handed over. I support the sales and the production departments and react to various needs that arise during installation. I make sure that the quality requirements and the timetables we agreed on are met", Ellä explains.

"Great negotiation skills and a certain kind of perseverance play a key role in the work of a purchaser."

He has worked as a purchaser since January 2020. Before that, Ellä worked as a maintenance engineer at UPM’s Rauma factory. After Paper machine 2 was shut down, Ellä, who graduated as Bachelor of Engineering in 2018, looked for new challenges – and he found one at Raumaster Paper Oy.

"I am still on that same track, and I have not regretted it for a single day. The company takes excellent care of their employees, and everything is done as agreed. I work fully remotely from Mikkeli, where I moved from Rauma at the end of 2022. My work also involves some traveling."

"You develop your expertise through new experiences", Juhani Ellä says.

Practical experience in paper manufacturing

Ellä worked at the Rauma paper mill for four or so years. This means that he is very familiar with Raumaster Paper’s equipment in practice as well. It gives him a huge advantage as a purchaser.

"In a way, paper manufacturing equipment is simple, but at first it can appear very complex. Seeing the full picture is much easier when I know what the equipment does, what sort of an environment they are operated in and how they should work", Ellä says.

"You develop your expertise through new experiences. The world is changing, and the requirements are rising, so I constantly need to keep my finger on the pulse. That way I can demand specific things from our subcontractors."

Knowledge of the human nature is one of Juhani Ellä's strengths.

Technical expertise is a huge advantage, but Ellä considers social skills, such as negotiation and collaboration skills, to be even more important in his job. He playfully describes himself as a kitchen psychologist.

"Knowledge of the human nature is my strength. I can read the room in a way that allows me to see if my discussion partner and I are on the same page, and if they really want the job. You can see motivation, just like you can see the lack of it."

In the work of a purchaser, the key to success is a strong, high-quality supplier network.

"For the most part, the same equipment gets replicated, so we get a significant synergy benefit because we know the subcontractors who have worked on the same equipment before. We know their pricing and can rely on their quality."

Master of Osto – so how is purchasing mastered?

Juhani Ellä, purchaser, Raumaster Paper Oy: Great negotiation skills and a certain kind of perseverance play a key role in the work of a purchaser. You have to be technically informed and enjoy working with various people. I get a sense of achievement when the budget and the delivery times hold, and the entire delivery is completed as planned.