Raumaster Paper’s chief engineer Juha Soini has become familiar with the tangibility of equipment and operational environment during his early career. As a chief engineer, Soini looks at the big picture and makes sure that the designed lines are functional, and the equipment is compatible.
In February 2023, Juha Soini began working as a chief engineer at Raumaster Paper. He has enjoyed working in his new position. He has six years of previous experience as an mechanical engineer. As a chief engineer, he is responsible for ensuring that the design work of projects proceeds on schedule, and he also works on equipment design.
”The work of a chief engineer is very versatile. Together with the mechanical engineers, we modify equipment in ways that guarantee that they serve their purpose in the best possible way, and we consider how we can reach various goals, such as required capacities”, Soini explains.
”I support the engineers and make sure that they are aware of the future requirements of the equipment. I am also responsible for inspecting the final designs. I also work closely with automation to make sure that our equipment has all the necessary sensors and motors for programming purposes.”
"Great atmosphere guarantees that our internal collaboration is seamless. All of us are passionate about our work."
Usually, 2-6 mechanical engineers work on Raumaster Paper’s projects depending on their scale. Although the chief engineer looks at the big picture, the right kind of collaborative culture guarantees success at the workplace.
”There are many types of equipment and various production methods, which means that design work is diverse, and that is what makes it enjoyable. Designing challenges the engineers in a great way, and you always get to learn something new.”
”Great atmosphere guarantees that our internal collaboration is seamless. All of us are passionate about our work, and we want to help and advice our colleagues in different situations.”
Practical experience from the paper mill
Soini has studied mechanical engineering at the Rauma campus of Satakunta University of Applied Sciences. When he was younger, he worked as a carpenter, a profession which required precise designs and execution. He also has experience of quality control and assembly tasks from a plastic factory and experience from the UPM Rauma paper mill.
”At UPM, I worked as a winder operator. That means that I have worked on the same equipment I now design. During that one year or so, I got a good idea of what the equipment is like in practice, what sort of environment they are in and how the operators use them. Practical experience has been incredibly helpful", Soini says.
Soini began working at Raumaster Paper’s Isometsäntie office in May 2017. Back then, a friend he knew from middle school and high school worked as a mechanical engineer, and that friend talked the familiar man into applying for an open position.
”I started out as a mechanical engineer, and after a while, I began to learn the tasks chief engineers are responsible for, such as making foundation drawings and motor lists. That, of course, made the shift to a full-time chief engineer easier.”
Using everyone’s expertise and experience
Raumaster Paper employs four chief engineers. In addition to Soini, Jari Hannula and Mikko Alinen work as chief engineers on the roll handling department, and Teppo Lehtonen is responsible for the winders. The chief engineer also works closely with Engineering Manager Jari Nikula and the project manager assigned for each project.
”The chief engineers collaborate closely. When larger changes on equipment are needed or fully new equipment are designed, we brainstorm together and go through the details as a group. This way we can utilize everyone’s special expertise and previous experience”, Soini says.
"The most important thing is that we can successfully complete each step of a project from start to finish."
Our work community has a wide range of versatile expertise, and that, combined with the desire to help, guarantees that each member of our organisation can develop their own skills every day.
”In equipment design, I get a sense of achievement from the moments when the light bulb goes on and I realize what is the best way to execute something with a solution that is simple and cost-effective, for example. I also like the finishing stage because I think that it is important to create clear and functional blueprints. The most important thing is that we can successfully complete each step of a project from start to finish.”
Master of Suunnittelu – so how is design mastered?
Juha Soini, Raumaster Paper: Chief engineer must have technical knowledge and understand the equipment, but they also need to have a grasp on project work. On the mental side, they should be flexible so that we can finish projects on schedule. As a chief engineer, I need to know our equipment and how easily all individual pieces of equipment can be modified to suit the needs of our customers.