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Cool People – Oscar’s Journey

Oscar López Velázquez joined Bluefors in September 2019 as a Wiring Technician, and since then he’s progressed and taken on a new role as Delivery Project Manager. But when he joined, Oscar didn’t have any experience in quantum technology — and moving from Mexico to Finland was a big cultural change.

So what made him decide to take such a leap into the unknown?

A Curious Mind Never Rests

In some ways, you could say that Oscar was born to work in cryogenics. Back home in Mexico City, his dad was an electrical engineer, and, as Oscar explains, “I was always helping him fix things, and in the process learning a lot about all kinds of electrical stuff, from the large to the small.”

It almost seems inevitable, then, that his curiosity drove him forward to complete a degree in Mechanical Engineering, at the Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana, Mexico City.

And that could have been the end of the story. Oscar could have found work in Mexico, and lived a happy and contented life in Mexico City working in a field he loved.

But sometimes our destinies take us to strange and surprising places.

While studying, Oscar saw an opportunity for an international internship as part of his studies. Mechanical and electrical engineering is a big field; there are a lot of different options and paths to set out on. Oscar was looking for something special. Something that would keep his curious mind engaged and give him opportunities to grow. And that’s when he discovered a (then small) company in Finland looking for intern wiring technicians…

“What I liked about Bluefors was they were working with new technology. Cryogenics was a new field for me, but it seemed like it was a developing area, and that I’d have an opportunity to grow with it.”

Oscar sent off his application, and was soon invited for an interview. “What I liked – the impression I got – was that the work culture was very different. The whole interview process felt very professional. People were flexible, relaxed. Everything was like a conversation.”

A few weeks later, Oscar was on a flight to Helsinki.

One Cool Step at a Time

For Oscar, finding and accepting new challenges comes naturally, and this attitude has proven a key contributor to his role and career at Bluefors.

“I’ve always been interested in growing as a professional and improving my skills. When I joined Bluefors as an intern, I started as a Technician in the Wiring department. First they taught me the basics, learning the ropes and the skills needed. But before long I was working full-time, assembling the main wiring for our systems.”

His desire to get stuck in and help find new solutions soon got him noticed. After 1.5 years of seeing his engagement and proactive nature, Oscar’s manager offered him the chance to move into a Senior Technician role. Here, he would be working more with Bluefors’ customers, making customized wiring to client specifications, but also taking on more responsibility for onboarding and helping new team members, as well as developing better processes, such as finding a solution to the large number of backlog items on the teams’ task lists.

“I’m proactive, and I think that’s important at Bluefors — perhaps even more than my degree. I like to help and do the things that other people don’t have time to do. For me it’s all about professionalism – when something needs to be done, I take it as a challenge to find a solution.”

Moving On Up

After 3.5 years in the Wiring team, Oscar felt it was time for a change. When a happy coincidence arose, he seized the opportunity to push himself and develop his skills into new areas.

“I always want to keep learning more, and I think this is why I developed rapidly in the team too. One day, one of the Directors asked me if I could assist him in figuring out how to overcome some delivery issues, as he told me I have the right mindset. I wanted to help, and I believe that you can learn a great deal through helping others.”

Oscar’s manager had noticed his willingness to learn, and suggested he look into the internal recruitment process for a position as Delivery Project Manager, where he would work more on the delivery and shipping of Bluefors systems within the Operations and Supply Chain team.

“I realized that this could be a chance worth taking – maybe I could help and learn new skills to do something different. My main role now is to deliver the orders on time. To understand what the customer needs, and taking ownership of the order and delivery process. I really appreciate that the company recognizes your input and gives you the opportunity to grow. And in a growing company, there can be a lot of opportunities.”

How Does Bluefors Support Career Development?

Stepping into a new role comes with new challenges – and sometimes a steep learning curve. As Oscar discovered, “there were certainly new skills I needed to learn first, but I was very motivated to do that.”

Oscar’s supervisor was very supportive in this. “Even before I started in the new position, I was able to develop the necessary skills. And to begin with I first started talking to people and thinking with them about what we can do to improve things.”

When it comes to starting a new role and that steep learning curve, Oscar offers the following advice: “It’s not just about getting up to speed to do the work today; it’s also about building knowledge and skills that will take you into the future.”

Taking a pragmatic and professional approach to career development, he says, “You really need to think to yourself: where do I want to be in a couple of years?  What do you need to do or learn to get there? I feel that at Bluefors, when you are proactive and professional, you’ll open many doors.”

At the same time, he advises being open about your interests. Ask plenty of questions, and most importantly ask for feedback. “A company like Bluefors,” he says, “encourages initiative, independence, and responsibility – and it’s through those that you find opportunities for growth.”

Cool Culture at Bluefors

For Oscar, Bluefors’ internationality is a major factor in making it a enjoyable, diverse workplace. With nationalities from over 50 countries, Oscar feels pride in working for a company that welcomes all kinds of people from all over the world.

“We’re really open to everyone. We’re very international. And the open-minded culture makes you feel good working here, no matter what your background.”

When he was growing up in Mexico, Oscar never suspected that he’d be working internationally, and especially in this field. “I didn’t have any experience in quantum technology when I joined Bluefors, but I’ve worked hard, and I’m proud of what I’ve achieved. Sometimes I like to take a moment to look back and truly recognize how far I’ve come.”

As a way of appreciating his journey, Oscar has also tried to give something back to his home country. “Since I started here, I’ve created a link between my university and Bluefors. Now there are three people working here who came from Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana. So you can build bridges and affect people’s lives in surprising ways by helping them grow themselves, and in turn support their families back home.”

Join the Team

At Bluefors, we’re curious to the core – just like Oscar! Continuous development, learning, and collaboration are fundamental to our way of working.

If you’d like to bring your initiative and learn new skills in the exciting, ground-breaking – and very cool – world of cryogenics and quantum technology, check out our current open positions at Bluefors.

We have over 600 employees who can’t wait to meet you!