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Story | 11/05/2021 12:05:00 | 4 min Read time

The hidden gems of Kraków: the mysterious old town and one of the nicest working communities on the planet

Saara Töyssy

Editor, Tulus

The UPM HR Service Center in Kraków, Poland, employs nearly one hundred Human Resource professionals. Inside UPM this center is known for its warm atmosphere, highly motivated employees, and exceptional team spirit. The employees come from diverse cultural and professional backgrounds and over the years have managed to create a truly unique place to work on the outer skirts of the beautiful Polish city of Kraków.

Former scuba dive instructor and HR Specialist, now Team Leader, Risto Jouttijärvi knows what makes the center special.

“I really appreciate the self-steering teams here and the freedom it means. If something doesn’t work, we are instantly looking for ways to improve it. I really enjoy co-operating with my team, thinking of fun ways to develop our efficiency and motivation. Although we work with technology and processes, even robotic automation, our work always has a human-focus,” he points out.

Risto relocated to Poland from Finland a little over a year ago. He has found Kraków to be easy to love. “The city is beautiful and has a lot of character, and the daily life in it is something special. There is always a new restaurant to try and you know beforehand that it will be worth the time and money spent, “Risto describes.

This community is truly inclusive, it is open and it is diverse. We all come to the office every day with nothing but respect for each other.

 

The delightful combination of freedom to improve and a warm and supporting working community has charmed Senior HR Specialist & Service Delivery Manager Magdalena Kucharska, now 3,5 years at UPM, as well.

“This is my third job in Kraków, and I also studied here. I have found the atmosphere at UPM unique. The community is small enough so that we all know each other and get to see and work with almost all of our colleagues. This community is truly inclusive, it is open and it is diverse. We all come to the office every day with nothing but respect for each other. For me personally it is very important that I get to work with great people and that there is a good atmosphere,” Magdalena describes.

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The place to make your ambitions a reality

Magdalena has experienced some speedy career development during her time at the service center. She started as HR Specialist supporting the UK and small countries and had additional roles as team coordinator, Project Manager and internal trainer. After 1,5 years she was promoted to Senior HR Specialist and then moved on to another team and started to support Polish recruitments. Now Magdalena handles global recruitments and has the role of Service Delivery Manager. She is also a part of the Global Recruitment Team training new recruiters and working on system and processes improvements and troubleshooting.

“Every day here is a learning experience. And the managers support our development and motivate us to learn. Even when we are working with very small details of a bigger process, there are so many different tasks that it never becomes repetitive. The work can be hectic sometimes, but there is also support available. We give and get feedback, spar with each other, take on challenges and overcome obstacles together,” she describes, and Risto agrees.

“The variance of tasks here is amazing. One day we could be in contact with a plywood mill in Finland and the next day arranging something for our terminal in South Africa. There are no two days alike. Another thing I enjoy is the flat organisation, everybody gets along and interacts,” says Risto.

Because of the wide scope of different tasks available to everyone there is also a lot of room to develop your career the way you wish. “In this community we are all heard and seen and feel that our personal ambitions can be visible as well,” Magdalena describes.

The work can be hectic sometimes, but there is also support available. We give and get feedback, spar with each other, take on challenges and overcome obstacles together.

Be yourself to fit in

This dynamic, fun and ever-developing working community has an average age of employees right above 30. There is however room for people of all ages, and all sorts of backgrounds – personal and professional. Some attributes do help a new recruitment to fit in.

“The most important thing is having an open attitude and a willingness to learn and grow. It also helps if you have a passion for sustainable business,” says Risto.

“The UPM values of trust and be trusted, achieving together and aiming higher are truly a part of our working days here,” Magdalena adds.  

 

Check out the open positions at the UPM HR Service Center in Kraków

Read another story about working at the UPM HR Service Center in Kraków


UPM HR Service Center in Kraków

Our teams of HR Specialists support UPMers in our 40+ countries around the world in 9 different languages. The services we provide cover employee data and employment lifecycle processes, recruitment, learning and compensation and benefits, as well as process automation and HR data analytics. The HR Service Center is a prime vantage point into the HR processes of a global organization and a great place for building a solid foundation of HR knowledge.