Iranian-born Software Developer Mehdi Javan is impressed by the low hierarchy and equality of the Finnish working culture. After living years in busy Tehran, the size of the compact city of Turku is perfect, he says.
You moved to Turku, Finland to work for Vaadin. What’s Vaadin all about?
We produce free and open source products that can be used by software developers around the world. Software development would be very difficult if such frameworks didn’t exist. We also offer commercial products and services to our customers.
You had other job offers from Europe, why did you choose Vaadin?
I knew Vaadin before applying and thought that it is a very interesting company. Here I have a chance to help software developers around the world, not only my colleagues in one company. It’s wonderful. We have something like 150 000 developers that use Vaadin’s products.
What do you do in practice as a Senior Software Developer?
I’m a member of the Flow Team. Flow is the core part of the Vaadin platform. I design, develop and maintain it, and sometimes resolve any bugs seen in it. I’m interested in resolving bugs, which might be strange among developers. I also like to help my colleagues to find the reason and a solution for a problem or a bug.
Where is the work done at Vaadin seen in use?
It can be seen almost anywhere. Software developers use our products to develop web applications. When you’re using for example your Internet bank or a hospital application, it might have been developed by using the Vaadin platform.
How is the working environment at Vaadin?
We have really nice people working here, they are eager to help each other and passionate about our product. There’s something that is considered when Vaadin hires new people: as much as they care about your skills, they also care about your character.
How do you find living in Turku?
The size of this city is perfect for me: you can go everywhere in no time. There are lots of sports clubs, different kinds of entertainment, even a great Concert Hall. It is easy to find a nice path to run. The people are nice and almost all of them can speak English quite well. I know that I should learn Finnish, but it is more difficult than I expected.
You’ve had a long career as a Software Developer in Iran. How does working in Finland differ from working in Iran?
In Iran the companies are mostly hierarchical, whereas here in Finland their structure is mostly flat. At Vaadin you can approach anybody, from the CEO to any manager and ask for their help. It makes our job easier and relaxed. I can see equality here, as everybody has the same benefits.
Would you recommend international software experts to come and work in Southwest Finland?
When I was in Iran and interviewed by Vaadin, I didn’t expect that there would be so many software companies in Turku. Now I’ve seen that there are lots of good, high level software companies to work for here. I really recommend all software developers to consider the Turku companies for their future.
Anne Koskinen-Kannisto, you work as the Vice President of People at Vaadin. What does Vaadin have to offer as a software company?
Thinking about the technological side, you’re able to build your own product and to see your handprint used globally. Brands like Nasa, Puma, Volkswagen, Netflix and over 40 percent of the Fortune 500 Companies use our technology.
What is special about working at Vaadin?
We have vaadiners from all around the world, over 22 different nationalities. The thing we have in common is the passion for what we do. It doesn’t matter where you come from, you are accepted as the beautiful individual you are. And we are as transparent as a company can be.
What do you think about the ICT sector in Southwest Finland?
There’s a lot of positive buzz, and it’s been good to have new companies coming to the area. There are more open positions and more international talents here, and it’s boosting the atmosphere as we can do things together. We’ve invited international talents to get together, to socialize and to network.
What do you see in Vaadin’s future?
We are hoping to expand and to get new vaadiners join us, not only for the technological side but also for sales and marketing. We have locations in Turku, Berlin and San José and we intend to grow globally.
What are you excited about regarding Vaadin’s future?
I’m excited about the fact that we have really started to focus on the human side and career development. When you come from another country, it’s our duty to make sure that you’re integrated to the team, organisation and country. I’m looking forward to new international talents coming to Turku.