6 Jun 2019Blog

No such thing as a typical day – my life at Solita

Tuomas Melin Team Leader and Data Engineer Solita

We’ve already met Tuomas Melin, Team Lead & Data Engineer, in our case study of the Data Champions Programme. This was a tailored training carried out with UPM, a global leader in the bioforest industry. Tuomas explained the course in a nutshell: “We wanted to enable using these new motivating skills and add fresh insight to the way businesses solve problems.”

As course leader, Tuomas was integral to the programme’s structure and findings, affecting for the better the way that people go about their jobs by empowering them to use tools such as machine learning.

But what does being at the forefront of this revolution in working methods actually feel like? We caught up with Tuomas to find out.

Hi, Tuomas! How did you end up at Solita?

I went to Tampere University of Technology. Back then and afterwards too, Solita was responsible for organizing a few courses. One of them was taught by a current colleague of mine. I attended as it was interesting, and I needed the study credits. During the course, I got to know Solita a bit more. My route was typical for a student. I was doing my master’s thesis, so I was applying for a place where I could start part-time and then continue full-time after studying. Solita was an ideal choice for me.

Tell us about your career path

I’ve certainly exercised my right to try different things! I joined Solita in March 2010. I began as a software developer in our development unit. I stayed there for approximately two years. Then in early 2013, we did our first proof of concept on the Amazon Web Services (AWS) platform. This turned into a full-blown project for Sanoma, the largest media company in Finland.

How did things progress from there?

We formed an internal startup around this cloud-based offering. We also took our first steps into data science for our customer cases. We combined these ways of working. This internal startup grew from around five to fifteen people in two years.

We split into two teams and I then took a managerial role in one of those data science teams. Ever since I’ve been leading a double role. I’m leading a team of data people and also doing consulting work for our customers.

What does an average day in your role look like?

In my role now there isn’t an average day. I’m moving around a lot. I’m even on the train going home from a customer doing this interview. Yesterday I was onsite at our office talking with our recruitment people. None of the days are similar.

What achievement are you proudest of?

I’m most proud when I get feedback from the people I’m helping. Knowing that I’ve helped them through the steps that are maybe challenging or sometimes frightening and then succeeding in those. That’s really the thing that makes me proud.

What’s the biggest challenge facing Solita?

We’re growing and becoming global. We have a great atmosphere and culture in Finland and trying to shift that abroad is not an easy task. But I’m confident we’ll be able to do it.

What do you love most about your job?

I really like working with people. I also get a kick from these technical things that I’m able to talk about. So I get to tackle both technical issues and also help customers to utilise, for example, how they can get the most out of their data.

What are the skills one needs to succeed at Solita?

Some of the most important skills are being curious about how things work and having the mindset of wanting to help others. Once you combine those you have the basic drive to learn new things. And then you spread that information and turn that into something concrete for our customers.

Ready to take your next step? Check out our open positions!