QHES Director Kari Rinkinen: “Safe working environment is a result of good leadership and right attitudes”

Kari Rinkinen was appointed the new director of QHES as of April 2021. Rinkinen is also took over the role of Occupational Safety Manager. As FSP is seeking international growth the field of QHES managing is expected to enlarge globally. – The overall importance of QHES management system has clearly risen. The industry is becoming more aware that these issues need continued attention. QHES management in a large sized company such a FSP require constant improvement, says Rinkinen.

The abbreviation QHES stands for quality, health, environment and safety. According to Rinkinen the quality factor can be divided in two areas in the QHES management system; quality of production and procedural quality. Rinkinen’s expertise being the latter; procedural quality.

– My job is to monitor the quality of different processes and improve standard procedures. A large part of my work is troubleshooting. As a QHES Director I determine existing or possible risks. I go through the reports and develop a corrective procedure. The implementation of the new procedure is carefully monitored and the effectiveness is evaluated. Depending on the success of the new procedure the cycle begins at the first step again. This way we ensure a cumulative improvement in quality, explains Rinkinen.

Rinkinen regards occupational health care and occupational safety as somewhat corresponding issues.
– Of course these two issues are typically separated and the occupational health care is handled by Human Resources Department.

Managing occupational safety is aided by intense forethought. It is very important that the possible risks and dangers are recognized early and eliminated, says Rinkinen and continues, – Safety and furthermore the appreciation of safety issues is an outcome of not just good leadership but general attitudes and exemplary performance. My objective is to make occupational safety more visible in everyday working life at FSP.

Our clients have a growing interest in environmental issues

FSP’s clientele consist mainly of technological industry. The operators have set high standards for quality, environment and occupational safety. And the same standards comply with partners and subcontractors.

– We have to meet our clients requirements. As responsible operators they expect the same integrity from us, explains Rinkinen.

– Although this is not a new thing for FSP, Rinkinen continues and points out that improving the company’s QHES management system has always been a part of FSP’s strategy.

FSP’s annual environmental objectives include reducing the carbon footprint and exploring different carbon neutral surface treatment methods. FSP also closely monitors its waste management. Reducing of VOC emissions (volatile organic compounds) is also a major focal point in the present year.

– Our clients expect controlling of environmental and sustainability issues. FSP is eager to meet the needs of sustainable surface treatment and offer responsible services.

Overlooking problems – When silence gives consent

According to Rinkinen one of the biggest challenges in QHES management is changing people’s attitudes.

– It is reasonably simple to plan and implement new procedures. However if old procedures are persistently pursued unfortunately it is impossible to achieve any kind of change or improvement.

Rinkinen continues emphasizing the importance of good supervising skills when changes are implemented. A skilled supervisor manages unexpected deviations systematically and according to the given procedure.

– It is evident if problems are overlooked the unacceptable becomes acceptable. Silence gives consent to the matter.

FSP promotes its staff to openly report about possible deviations. The company has created standard reporting procedures to ensure the reports reach the QHES management. – FSP operates several surface treatment units. As we analyze existing or potential risks, develop a plan of action to address these, we also make sure that the improvements are implemented in all FSP units. It would be foolish to repeat the same mistake over and over.

Always room for improvement

In addition to standard operating procedures the logic controlled IoT Solution system provides Rinkinen plenty of information. FSP’s objective is to offer most sustainable surface protection with the highest quality. The use of technology based IoT Solutions provides FSP adequate resources.

– IoT-system provides real-time information enabling us to analyze new information efficiently. Advanced information processing ensures improved quality observations.

At the same time we have a better view over environmental aspects like controlling the emissions.

Although the IoT system streamlines information handling Rinkinen stays busy. – There is always room for improvement when it comes to QHES management. I like to think QHES management system as a circle of continuous improvement. Our work is never done. Even if we managed to achieve the desired level of ZAV (zero accident vision) one should never rely on this. In my experience becoming passive in QHES management will backfire rapidly. Safety and quality has to actively and continuously be maintained.

The starting point of international expansion

FSP is expanding its business globally. The company has already established operations in Estonia and Poland. FSP has had operations in Poland for over a decade and the latest acquisition in Stargard is yet another step on the company’s path to take over the international markets.

As Rinkinen is the acting QHES Director in FSP corporation he will also manage the QHES internationally.

– FSP is at the starting point of its international expansion and it is very interesting to be able to be onboard this journey. FSP is seeking significant growth in Poland, says Rinkinen. Expanding business oversees also equals new challenges. How does Rinkinen feel about managing QHES abroad? – I am looking forward to begin our operations and I am excited about my future visit to Stargard. Inevitably there will be some challenges. Although both Finland and Poland are members of the European Union there are some differences in the countries local legislation. Also adapting our operations to local norms and implementing the FSP safety culture may be somewhat challenging. I strongly believe that with open dialogue and cooperation we will achieve safe and efficient standard operational procedures.

Kari Rinkinen, Director of QHES and Occupational Safety Manager
+358 40 835 8118 

  • Member of Management Team at FSP since 4/2021
  • Previously, Rinkinen worked at Ramboll, where he was responsible for FSP QHES matters.
  • Likes to spend his free time at his cottage
  • Boating at the Saimaa lake district is close to his heart. Rinkinen also enjoys winter sports.