“I appreciate that employees are trusted here and they are given the opportunity to progress in their careers. I enjoy working at VAK very much.”
Aki-Erkki Virtanen, Welder, VAK Oy, Vahto
What is your job?
I organise training courses for our employees in cooperation with various partners. This year we have already organised 35 training courses, which have been attended by 210 employees. Our main cooperation partners as training providers are HIAB on the cargo processing side, and SAF and BPW among the axle manufacturers. In addition, I plan e.g. the work shifts of our on-call maintenance group and produce maintenance instructions and forms for the installers at all localities.
What qualifications do you have?
I have completed a vehicle and transport engineering degree in vocational school. In addition to this, I have completed supplementary training by completing, for example, a diesel installer course. I am also happy that VAK has given me the opportunity to further train in the future alongside working. With the encouragement of my employer, I have completed a load lifter inspector degree and I have also participated in LMI’s courses directed for supervisors: From objectives to results and Self-management.
What led you to your profession?
When I was younger, I worked as a car and truck driver for a long time. I then moved on to carry out maintenance and repair work on forestry machinery. In 2005, I applied for a vacant installer position at Seinäjoki’s VAK Huoltopalvelut service point, but at the time I turned down the job. A year later, I was contacted again by VAK Huoltopalvelut and offered the job as an installer, at that time I responded positively.
What different jobs have you done at VAK Huoltopalvelut?
At the beginning of my career, I worked on hooklifts’ installation work and carried out a variety of different maintenance and repair tasks. Six years later, in 2012, I was promoted as Seinäjoki’s maintenance workshop’s foreman. At the time, my team consisted of several dozens of employees. I have worked in my current job as the maintenance service manager since the beginning of 2018.
What do you like about most in your job?
I like that my job description is very diverse, and no day is similar to another one. In addition to my daily routine work, I can participate in various development projects, which further improve our operations. I am also able to travel with work. I visit VAK maintenance workshops around Finland to train and tell about new products. A couple of weeks ago, I was also in Sweden repairing and inspecting trailer heaters. I think it’s nice to get to know the employees at different localities and share experiences with them.
What kind of person is suitable for the industry?
Interest and attitude are aspects to which we pay particular attention. In principle, we recruit heavy duty equipment installers and other skilled workers in the industry, such as painters and platers. But equally important with their educational background is the applicant’s appropriate attitude and interest towards the industry. If necessary, we will organise the necessary training for the new employee, which shall be completed at the workplace with the work supervisor by carrying out relevant work duties. A good person who shows initiative and the desire to learn is suitable to supplement our team.
What benefits does VAK Huoltopalvelut offer its employees?
Our employees have the opportunity to train and progress in their careers. As an employer VAK Huoltopalvelut is also fair and flexible. Holidays and other leaves can be agreed with the supervisor. A safe working environment has been invested in at the maintenance service points, and occupational health care has also been implemented appropriately. However, perhaps the most important benefit, which the employer can offer, is an open and inspiring working atmosphere. At VAK Huoltopalvelut we have a good attitude to work and the team work together. For this reason, I have happily been employed by the same employer for 12 years already.
Aki-Erkki Virtanen, Welder, VAK Oy, Vahto
Erik Filippov, Designer, VAK Oy, Vahto