Career story: Lassi Hämäläinen

“Feedback isn’t just pixels changing on the screen” – Meet the developer behind the wheel Lassi Hämäläinen

Lassi Hämäläinen’s passion for coding ignited in high school, where he nurtured his skills as a hobby. He continued to code during his special duties assignment in the military service. When he started studying information technologies at university, he was already programming more fluently than many of his peers. No surprise there, but he landed a job very soon after starting his studies.

“During the first summer of my studies, I landed a summer job as an embedded software engineer. I worked for the company six years alongside my studies. My work consisted of various customer projects and related tasks. One day, a headhunter asked me on linkedIn if I would be interested in working at a sim racing company” Hämäläinen recalls. 

At first, Hämäläinen was a bit unsure, since he wasn’t really looking for a new job. Still, he was intrigued by the sim racing industry. He had been into racing games when younger, and had even owned some cheaper model wheels and pedals. When the headhunter listed the skills required in the position at Simucube, Hämäläinen was surprised how well it all matched with his own abilities. 

“I remember thinking that everything they were looking for fit me like a glove. Senior-role was something new for me, but the role as a tech lead intrigued me. All this added up with my familiarity with sim racing ignited my interest.”

Ultimately, it was the job description that prompted Hämäläinen to jump into the recruitment process. During his career as a consultant, he rarely had the opportunity to utilize his full range of skills, as his work was largely focused on a specific area.

“Working as a consultant wasn’t as holistic. Projects often focused on specific aspects, and the projects were generally very similar to each other. I wanted to see something different.”

Where tangible products meet code

As Senior Software Developer at Simucube, Hämäläinen’s days are filled with code reviews, mentoring others, and meetings. Programming is still part of the job, but not in the same way as before.

“When I started working at Simucube, about 95 % of my job was coding. Now it is more about helping others – but I still do and enjoy coding.”

For Hämäläinen, Simucube has offered many rewarding opportunities. In his job, he enjoys direct customer feedback, freedom, and clear common goals. Regardless, the most important thing for Hämäläinen is the ability to witness the outcome of his efforts.

“My own handiwork is very visible. In my previous job, I usually didn’t even see the final device where the code went. I might have gotten feedback that the code works well, but I rarely saw it in its final application.”

Mechanical design, which occurs alongside software design, also adds its own flavor to the daily routine of software development. Products are tested together and problems are solved together. This creates a unique and diverse working environment. 

“It’s also rewarding that the feedback isn’t just about pixels changing correctly on the screen. We make tangible products that you can poke and experiment with. That’s not something you get to do very often in this field.”

Company culture that drives success

For Hämäläinen, Simucube’s products are something to be proud of. His work and everyday life at Simucube has given him great stories to share with friends and family. 

“I have brought my friends here to test our products, which has been a real thrill. It’s also pretty fun to chat with people like Heikki Kovalainen at the office. You get to build some pretty fascinating networks and contacts.”

Even though it is always exciting to work with racing superstars, the general atmosphere and culture are more important. According to Hämäläinen, this aspect is in good shape at Simucube. He describes the culture at Simucube as open and committed.

“In my opinion, everyone here wants to participate and make a difference in their own way. We are asked for our opinions on matters, and decisions are made very openly. As a company, we have grown quite a bit, so we no longer fit into one meeting room to make decisions together. Yet, there is still a feeling that we have been able to influence things.”

Good people create good culture. Hämäläinen agrees that the people of Simucube are the main reason for a positive atmosphere.

“We’ve got a great bunch of people here at work. We have a good time together, for example going rock climbing with the developer group in our free time and having board game nights. We’re always up for organizing all sorts of fun activities together” Hämäläinen concludes. 

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