Siri Stenmark interview


Siri, a Cost Controller with holistic view

Siri Stenmark, with a Master of Science in Industrial Engineering and Management, did her master thesis at Titan. After finishing her thesis, her curiosity in the construction industry had been aroused and she wanted to learn more.

  • What I find most exciting about the construction industry is that it is so much more dynamic compared to, for example, the manufacturing industry. It is possible to work with improvements on a completely different level. There is also a flexibility that cannot be achieved in other industries.

Her role as Cost Controller is about managing the costs in projects. Everything from invoices to follow-up on contracts and tenders. The core is to stay within established frameworks.

  • My role largely consists of office work. Yes, lots of excel sheets. But for me it is important to understand the whole chain, to see the pig picture. That’s why I try to be out on site once a week. On site I pick up knowledge from those who have a lot of experience of the industry since I’m not construction-oriented myself. It’s a different atmosphere out on site than in the office. Not graded better or worse, but a different type of communication. You’re closer to each other and are able to see everything with your own eyes. In the office, it’s difficult to understand the things that can be crucial in a project. Taking my own initiatives makes me have fun at work. I have found ways to connect my excel sheets with reality, which facilitates my work with business development and routines for purchasing and cost control.

Siri mentions there are many preconceived notions about the construction industry, but that she is only positively surprised when it comes to atmosphere, helpfulness and flexibility.

  • At first, I was probably a little bit surprised that everyone was so friendly and willing to help me. This applies to colleagues, managers and management. But of course it’s something I really value. I appreciate that I have so much freedom to control how I do my job. I have discovered the importance of being a good listener let alone asking many questions since I’m so dependent on other people’s information and knowledge.

She emphasizes the value of working in an inclusive environment and having the managers around. The communication paths are few and fast. In addition, there is a great respect for different backgrounds and experiences.

  •  Titan has a very inclusive climate. There’s always motivation to solve all the important issues that arise, but the work environment is always relaxed and unpretentious. I value the dialogue with my superiors and that we can talk about what I struggle with, what I prioritize and how I can move forward if I get stuck. Overall, the culture is very open, it’s easy to talk to each other. I believe that Titan’s international composition of people contributes to more creative solutions and ways of thinking. Different cultures give value and we learn a lot from each other.

Siri appreciate the benefits of living in Norrbotten. It was not a an obvious choice staying in Luleå after completing her studies at LTU since her partner has his roots in Linköping.

  • We both like Luleå, close to everything but still far. For me that’s a nice feeling. It’s like I’m feeling more humble here. I can see the value of an extremely cold, sunny winter day when the snow looks like crystals. And the Northern Lights. I’ve seen it many times, but I’m just as thrilled about it every time.