Staff Interview with Saana Lukka, the Junior Software Developer at Elinar

Saana Lukka from Pori came across Elinar for the first time during her studies at Satakunta University of Applied Sciences (SAMK). She was googling AI-companies nearby for her school task. When there came a time to find a company for her software development internship, she ended up elsewhere because AI-world felt foreign for her. Saana graduated as a Bachelor of Business Information Systems and her internship turned into a job.

In the fall of 2019, however, Saana noticed an open job announcement – Elinar was seeking Software Developers. The tasks were exactly what she was handling, so she decided to apply. “At least I will see how the recruitment process in this industry is like”, she thought in her mind.

In November, Saana started at Elinar as a Junior Software Developer. “To be offered the position was a positive surprise, as I was interested in the company”, Saana recalls now, over six months later. Interest in Elinar had arisen by browsing the company’s website. “While reading the staff interviews, I noticed that people feel really good here. The other thing that convinced me was the employees’ long careers at Elinar”, she describes.

Soft values and concrete well-being acts

Elinar’s ranking in the international IBM Watson Build Challenge finals had also come to Saana’s attention. As an achievement of a small company from Pori, it seemed unbelievable. “I wondered how demanding the working culture and goals would be here”, Saana reveals. Fortunately, everyday life at Elinar surprised her positively. “The work community is very warm-hearted and soft values guide the company’s action”, she praises.

As a new employee, Saana has paid attention to how Elinar invests in well-being at work. “It’s talked about everywhere, but unfortunately it’s often more or less just an advertising slogan”, Saana ponders. “But here instead, I see much of practical work going on for well-being at work.” The attentive employee has realized why she feels like this. “Elinar has a strong desire to develop all things. When people here see trouble, they always start to seek a solution for it – rather than search for a guilty person or just shrug shoulders at the matter”, she illustrates. Saana thinks that the forward-looking attitude is the secret to success – how else would a small company have been in the world for over 25 years?

The Software Developer gets results no matter where she works

At Elinar, Saana does software development to a large customer project. “Of course, I need to understand how the software works in order to do development for it. However, I am not just a coder, but my work is diverse”, she rejoices. So far, Saana has focused on just one project, which, in addition to software development, includes e.g. problem solving and maintenance. The project work itself also brings its variety. “The motivation for the work stays up, as there are different stages in the project. First, I get acquainted, then we work with varying workloads from the deadline to another… Finally, the project is done, and we move on to possible maintenance.”

Saana's cat named Sulo

The telecommuting during the COVID-19 Spring has not slowed Saana’s pace of work. She’s gotten used to working on her own and being responsible for the progress of the project – no matter where the workplace is. At home, listening to her favorite background music helps focus. “Instead of an electric desk, I work on the couch in the middle of pillows so I can change my working position often enough”, she laughs. Also, her cat named Sulo is happy to follow the hostess at home during the days.

Well-being from routines and various hobbies

During these exceptional circumstances, Saana takes care of her well-being and ability to work by following routines on her working days. “I always start working at the same time. I also try to invest in sleep, because getting a good night’s sleep is really important for the brain”, Saana explains. “In contrast to the previous office life, I started to sleep more with my internal sleep cycles and find myself waking up in the mornings with a lot more energy”, she says happily.

Versatile hobbies to balance working also keep Saana lively and relaxed. “When I was younger, I didn’t have trouble sitting at the computer around the clock, but nowadays I have to let my brains rest regularly”, she laughs. “We live close to nature, so jogging in the forest is one of the best ways to reset the thoughts”, says the Software Developer who goes out walking right after work. “I also enjoy yoga and music. For example, I play the piano for my pleasure”, Saana smiles.