Business Unit Manager Hannu Paappa: ”Learning new skills keeps the brain young”

The position of Business Unit Manager in the surface treatment industry is a ground breaking role for Hannu Paappa. The career change with new challenges was his ambition and Paappa is very happy with the outcome. – The atmosphere at FSP is very welcoming and positive. I have great colleagues who are nice to work with.

Hannu Paappa was appointed as Business Unit Manager at FSP December 2020. Prior working with FSP Paappa had built a career at Naantali Steel Service Centre. There he operated as a Sales Manager in Finland and the Baltics. Paappa also had a position in the Naantali Steel Service Centre’s Management Team.

Paappa has adopted his new role at FSP with an ease and he enjoys the occasionally hectic atmosphere at work.
– I enjoy the fact that every day is different. The vigorous atmosphere and unexpected challenges keep me motivated. I am a resilient character and I perform well under pressure. I am not a creature of habit, I like change, says Paappa.

Paappa is overseeing the operational management of the production units in Raisio, Hämeenlinna, Turku, Pori and Järvenpää units.

The coronavirus pandemic has been challenging in many ways and also full of surprises.
– After a year with the corona pandemic our business has taken a drastic turn. We are currently growing rapidly. The volumes of customer orders are increasing and the positive growth trend is expected to continue, Paappa explains.

Currently the biggest challenge at FSP’s many units is to manage the constant growth.
–Although we consider this only to be a positive problem, Paappa points out smiling.

A strong foundation is vital when building new

The depths and insights of the surface treatment technology is something new to Paappa. Although he is pleased to notice his previous work history has turned out to be useful.

– To my surprise there is a lot of similarities in this line of work when I compare it to my earlier duties. For example customer contacts and relations are somewhat the same. Number crunching is familiar to me from my work as a Sales Manager. The aspect of work safety is very visible here at FSP. I have been able to further improve work safety and bring new insights on the matter with my preceding experiences, Paappa points out and continues, –one could say that the competence and the skills I have previously obtained have laid a solid foundation to build new things on.

Ambition to fully grasp the surface treatment industry

Paappa is new to the surface treatment industry. Developing a deeper knowledge of the industry is his ambition and he is keen on learning all the tricks of the trade.

– The surface treatment technology is very interesting. I take the advantage of every opportunity to learn more and broaden my professional knowledge. Whenever I have extra time on my hands I try to observe the technical work in the paint shops. Although I feel that the best way to learn is to participate in the meetings and listen thoroughly to the discussions that take place. I think that it is important to understand why, how and when the surface treatment is performed or why certain circumstances must be taken into consideration and so on.

The relationship is intense between FSP and its customers

The intense and active relationship between FSP and its customers did not surprise Paappa.
– I was well aware of FSP’s excellent reputation even before I joined the team. The intensity of the customer relations is apparent here in many ways. The majority of FSP’s paint shops are located within our customers facilities. Thus the surface treatment operations adapt effortlessly to the customers production processes. Our customers expect a very high level of service. We meet the expectations by offering versatile services with the possibility to accommodate, Paappa sums up.

FSP is also known as a pioneer in the surface treatment industry. How does that reflect in Paappa’s opinion?
– Technological development is a part of FSP’s strategic planning and it is very upfront. The Raisio units automation works as a good example. The new coating line in the Raisio surface treatment facility is automated and utilises IoT- solutions. The future plan is to implement IoT-technology to FSP’s other units. FSP has a strong desire to create progress and plan ahead, Paappa explains.

The essence of my job? – Versatile challenges

What kind of challenges has Paappa encountered so far at FSP’s service?

– Say, there is always some challenges when implementing new systems. In my experience every project has some issues. The question is more about how to handle the issues when they appear. Our work at FSP is systematical and persistent. Therefore we are able to obtain full advantage and capacity of the production lines. And I must admit that it is running very well, Paappa proudly adds.