Career story: “At Planmeca, I have space to learn, develop myself and do work with a purpose”
To celebrate Planmeca’s 50th anniversary, we are releasing a series of career stories from our incredible employees. These stories introduce some of the experts behind our pioneering dental innovations and show a glimpse behind the scenes at Planmeca headquarters in Helsinki. In this article, Biomechanical Designer Alexander Brink talks about what it means to work with life-changing health tech solutions.
Alexander Brink, M.Sc. (Tech.), Master of Arts
Biomechanical Designer, implant design and manufacturing
Alexander Brink works as a Biomechanical Designer at Planmeca ProModel™, a service which offers virtual surgical planning, patient-specific implants, surgical guides and CBCT-based anatomical models for demanding surgical procedures and treatment planning. In 2016, the service played an important role in the first ever facial tissue transplant performed in the Nordics.
What made you apply to Planmeca?
“I was just about to graduate as Master of Science in Technology when, at a recruitment fair, I ran into someone who was to become my supervisor at Planmeca. What made me interested in the job was the hands-on nature of the work, the ethical component and the fact that the work was about CAD design. I started in my position in March 2017.
I had already heard a lot about Planmeca during my studies. Planmeca makes polished, high-quality products, the technology is state-of-the-art, and we focus a lot on design. I was also very interested in health tech as a field. I love that my work is essentially about helping people.”
What does your work involve?
“I work with CT and CBCT-based 3D models, which I use to design implants. All my projects involve close collaboration with a surgeon. The surgeon makes the clinical decisions and treatment planning, while I’m responsible for the implant design. Once the design has been approved, I manufacture the implants and necessary applications. This means that I also spend time in our machining centre working with our 3D printers and CNC machines.”
What is the best part of your job?
“The best part of my job is the creative process and being able to help people through my work. I also get to use state-of-the-art tools and collaborate with world-class experts.
I’m a designer and product developer by training, and so I’m interested in both the technical and creative aspects of product development. I love creating things that are elegant, functional, and useful. I want the implants that I design to be aesthetic, even when they all go under the skin.
But, of course, the design of our products is primarily determined by functionality. An implant design is successful when the implant works the way it is intended. Beauty and aesthetics are a by-product in a way – implants are beautiful when they’re well-designed and carefully finished.”
How would you describe Planmeca as a company?
“Planmeca does a lot of things right. Here I have space to learn, develop myself and do work with a purpose. Our products are made here from start to finish. Working here, the biggest lesson for me has been the end part of product development, when the product is launched in the market. In school, we worked on concepts, but here you get to see what it actually takes to create a product.”
Text: Hanna Korlin
Image: Dino Azinur
Planmeca Oy and Planmeca Group
Planmeca Oy is one of the world's leading dental equipment manufacturers with a product range covering digital dental units, CAD/CAM solutions, world-class 2D and 3D imaging devices and comprehensive software solutions. Headquartered in Helsinki, Finland, Planmeca’s products are distributed in over 120 countries worldwide. With a strong commitment to pioneering innovations and design, it is the largest privately held company in its field. Planmeca Oy is part of the Finnish Planmeca Group, which operates in the field of healthcare technology. The Group's turnover in 2020 was MEUR 764, and it employs nearly 2,900 people worldwide.