Saana Rossi is a professional in recruitment, HR issues and job-seeking, as well as a recent first-time author. Saana works as the director responsible for the staff’s success and well-being in the technology company Vincit. In her career, Saana has recruited thousands of professionals, coached personnel, and given lectures. In 2018, she was the first person in Finland to be named Recruiter of the Year. Saana graduated from the University of Jyväskylä in 2011, majoring in Social and Public Policy.

Saana Rossi originally comes from Jyväskylä. Even in her youth, she was interested broadly in social issues and causal relationships influencing society. After upper secondary school, she headed for university to study Social and Public Policy, in particular. In 2005, she had the choice between Jyväskylä and Joensuu, so the choice was very easy if not plainly obvious.

“The University of Jyväskylä has an excellent reputation and its teaching is known for its high quality, so I didn’t have to think about the decision for very long.”

Saana liked her studies very much and pursued them at a relatively quick pace and with a wide coverage. “I was a dull student in that sense. I felt that no amount of knowledge was sufficient”, Saana reminisces. Beside her studies, she was working a lot in paid jobs, which meant that traditional student life remained in a minor role. During her studies, Saana lived in Kuokkala, near the local bridge. She remembers the freezing winds on winter mornings when she was walking across the ice to Mattilanniemi on the opposite shore. Many times, this walk across the lake was good exercise.

“I could have moved to live in the University Main Library, even just staying there and cramming for exams was fantastic. The books included a vast amount of wisdom, which I desired. Also wandering around amidst the great scenery of the main campus was an enlivening experience every time.”

In addition to Social and Public Policy, Saana studied Management, Economics, Organisational Communication & Public Relations, and Development Studies. Work abroad attracted her, and when she was invited for an internship in Tanzania after her master’s thesis on development cooperation, the decision was easy. The internship belonged to a development cooperation project of the former Central Union for Social and Health Security. This experience from abroad deepened her interest in people and interaction.

Saana worked alongside her studies as a development coordinator and office assistant at Jyväskylän Siivouspalvelu (a cleaning service company). At that time, she also had her first contact with recruitment and noticed that recruitment is affected not only by the company’s reputation, but also by the reputation of the whole industry. Cleaners were especially difficult to recruit.

From Jyväskylä, Saana Rossi headed for Tampere, to work for Nanso as a HR and communications specialist. She spent three years at Nanso, which was struggling then with a difficult economic situation. There the dark side of HR administration became visible, along with employee co-operation negotiations and lay-offs. The experience was an extremely educational, but a hard one.

Next, Saana Rossi moved to Psycon in Helsinki, working as a recruitment consult. This job offered well-rounded possibilities for contact with various employee groups and different industries as well as companies and organisations of different sizes. From Psycon, Saana returned to work in Tampere, starting in the technology company Vincit, where she was responsible for recruitment and the development of its employer image.

In her current role, Saana is responsible for the whole staff and enabling their success. Vincit is a highly reputable company, which has been recognised for several years as the best workplace in Finland, and in 2016 also as the best workplace in Europe. The company is seeking new employees all the time, because there is more work available than there are employees. Saana was the first person in Finland to be chosen as Recruiter of the Year, in 2018, and in 2019, she was on the jury of Rekrygaala, selecting the next award-winner.

Now Saana is also an author and her just-published first book, Rekrytoija (“The Recruiter”), breaks borders between genres and gives an insight into the multidimensional, action-packed and challenging daily life in a recruiter’s job.

As the most important outcomes of her university studies, Saana finds the development of analytical thinking, management of entities, and outlining broad-based and complex structures, as well as acquisition and critical examination of information. Although her university studies are now behind her, she continues to learn new things. “Curiosity has always been a part of me, but my studies gave it a further boost”, Saana says.

Continuous learning means a lot to Saana. She considers that a human being is never fully developed and everyone is responsible for developing their own thinking and skills further in a personally preferable and meaningful direction.

“My own hunger for learning is endless. When studying, I used to say that I would be happy to keep studying as a job, if only somebody would be ready to pay for it. The older I have grown, the more easily I understand that I actually know very little about anything. In learning, you’d better be humble as well; a chance to learn and develop is a luxury and worth taking advantage of.”

Get latest articles from The University of Jyväskylä’s stakeholder magazine into your email. You can cancel your subscription at any time.