Johanna's career story

"I may not have had a very clear idea what it would be like working at CSC before I came here. As we strive to exert influence and promote Finland's competitiveness, this is exactly what my studies prepared me for – having a broad perspective on things and working out what affects what.

I joined CSC as a trainee in May 2015. Community relations have been a consistent part of my work, whereas my other duties have varied. Initially, my tasks included coordination and communications related to VIRTA higher education achievement register and direct data collections. They were followed by EU projects, such as PRACE and Research Data Alliance (RDA) Europe, and other research-related communications. I have also worked as the node coordinator of the European Life Science Infrastructure for Biological Information ELIXIR's Finnish Center.

In 2016, I worked part time from January till July while finishing my Master's thesis. After summer 2016, I continued working full time as a coordinator in the EU and Community Relations team, and in early December I graduated from the University of Tampere with a Master's degree in political and social sciences.

I currently mainly work with EU and community relations, and the approaching elections and other topical themes colour my working days. I am also involved in a Nordic Tryggve project on sensitive data, in which I am responsible for communications and their development. Prior experience of communications and international project work, in particular, have been really helpful in my current work. Longer experience has also come up trumps in community relationships – I have had the opportunity to follow different initiatives, advance my competence and get to know people here and there.

"Despite the fact CSC is an IT company, there's a social element to all of our activities."

It has been great working with different topics and getting such a diverse range of experience here. It has really helped in community relations, in particular. I have a better idea of what to pay attention to and who our experts in different areas are. We work in a broad range of fields and across a wide spectrum. It makes my job extremely interesting and adds variety to it. Although CSC is an IT company, there's a social element to all of our activities.

My working days tend to be quite different from one another. They may include writing a statement or a newsletter and talking to my colleagues to gather the information I need for them. Another day I might be reading and analyzing some Commission communication or ministry report. Some time ago, I spent a number of hours designing the logo and other communication materials for a project. I go to a fair number of different planning and other meetings. The pace of the work may be quite fast at times, and I cannot necessarily guess each morning what I will be doing for the rest of the day or the week.

The European Commission's term of office is coming to an end, and the Digital Single Market has been a hot topic in recent years. A number of legislative initiatives and communications relevant to this Commission strategy have been published over the last two or three years. We have analyzed their effects and considered if we might make some contribution or lend our expertise to their themes. Naturally, we always try to get involved as early as possible. Data and its utilization are newly topical issues, too, not forgetting the EU Data Protection Regulation. It is great that we are trying to promote international activity in Finland. Through us, researchers can harness such tools as PRACE's high-performance computing resources or ELIXIR's services for biodata management and processing.

"Although this is a big company and you occasionally encounter unfamiliar faces, we still have a very strong team spirit."

I've really enjoyed working here. I have reasonably good opportunities of influencing my own work. Together, my supervisor and I look for my personal strengths. Rather than just being a question of how CSC can benefit from you, it is about how you can develop in your work. I can direct my tasks towards my areas of interest.

My supervisors and workmates are really encouraging. I get feedback and plenty of support in my work. The people here are both easy to work with and highly skilled. We have events organized by the employer and activities coordinated by the recreation group. Taking part in sports and exercise is a great way of getting to know new people in a relaxed setting – even ones who you do not necessarily work with. Although this is a big company and you occasionally encounter unfamiliar faces, we still have a very strong team spirit."

  • Coordinator
  • MSc (political science)

Read more career stories