14 Feb 2019, 10:08 CET

Working as a Development Engineer at Gruvön Mill

Hello, my name is Christopher and I work as a Development Engineer within the R&D department at Gruvön. It is now close to 5 months since we all started as trainees and it has been a fun and rewarding time, filled with many new experiences and people to meet. It really feels like we started yesterday!

As mentioned by Adam in a previous post, the R&D department is divided into two groups; the research group, also called Tech Centers, and the development group. I work at one of our two Tech Centers. At the Tech Center in Gruvön our main goal is to work on creating new types of materials and solutions, where I focus on formable materials. A good example of a formable material is our product called FibreForm.

Me and fellow trainees fully focused on learning how to set pine seedlings during our themed visit at the forestry department.

The Tech Centers are the first step in the development of a new product, meaning that it is also at this step where we get the possibility to try out the most innovative and in some cases extreme ideas for new products our solutions.

Working with early development is very rewarding because, even though, maybe only to a small extent, I get the chance to influence how our future product portfolio will look like! Which I think is pretty cool! Another thing that I really like about my job is that no two days are alike. For example, I can spend one day at our lab performing different types of experiments, followed by another day where I sit at my desk trying to find logic in the results obtained from these experiments.

Getting ready for a Skype meeting in my office.

First days on the job

I started working at BillerudKorsnäs in early August. During my first week I got to know that many of the people working at my department have a passion for training. When I started, a group of colleagues had signed up for an event called Vasastafetten, which is a running festival where a team runs the ~90 km from Sälen to Mora, similar to Vasaloppet. Due to a last minute cancellation there was an empty spot that they wanted me to fill! As you all know, the first days on a new job can be quite nerve-wracking, so I thought that this would be a great way to get to know everybody in a not so formal way. So, in the second half of august we all rented a cabin close to the start in Sälen where we spent a night before the actual event. The event was divided into 10 different stretches of different length and difficulty, where I took one of the last ones. The race was really fun and the team spirit was very high when we actually finished, about 8.4 h later. As a reward for all our hard work we got a medal and a diploma confirming that we finished it. This diploma now hangs in our lunch room at our department.

Me together with 5 happy and energetic colleagues at the finish of Vasastafetten in Mora. From the left we have Christophe, me, Carl, David, Hanna and Maria.

What to come

As part of the trainee program we will be working abroad at one of our sales offices for one month. During this time we will among other things learn about how their daily work is like and also get an understanding about our customers requirements and expectations on our products. I will, together with Adam, visit our Milano office during this time, which will be really fun since I have never been in Italy before. BillerudKorsnäs have sales offices all around the world so this is a great chance to maybe experience a new culture or country!

Since I work in early development, the work done in the sales offices is farthest away from what I do on a daily basis. Because of this I think that I will learn a lot during this time and also get a deeper understanding and a different perspective on things.

This is a good example of why I believe that the trainee program is such a good way to start of your career within a new company. Namely, that we are given the chance to try out and get experiences from several different departments within the company, and thereby get a good overview of how the company is run and what it consists of.

That’s all for me now. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact me our any of my fellow trainees!