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"I could be involved from the start all the way to the delivery"

Per-Erik JohanssonPer-Erik Johansson

Project Manager Mobile Equipment, Lidhult, Sweden

When I was young, I wanted to design and develop a car that everyone would want. Today, I am not doing quite that, but I did get to design and develop a one-of-a-kind rough terrain container handler for one of the biggest organisations in the world. I first joined Kalmar as a summer trainee in 1979 and then full-time as a design engineer in 1983. Between 1987-1990 I took a leave of absence, and went back to University to do a Master's degree, before rejoining Kalmar in 1991.

During all these years, I’ve experienced many different roles within R&D and Product Development. But, a big part of my work experience was the development of the Rough Terrain Container Handler (RTCH). We received a request from the US Army in 1998; they wanted us to create a new machine concept that would improve their material handling in the field. This contract with the US Department of Defense began in 1998, and was the biggest contract ever made in material handling. We developed the concept with new technologies and innovative approach, managed to exceed the customer’s expectations, and began delivering the first machines from Lidhult in 2000. For me, this was a great project both in terms of work and as a personal experience. I  was involved from the start all the way to the delivery, from the blank white paper all the way to the delivery of the machines; I even got to spend 2 years in Texas, USA.

For me the best part of working for Kalmar is that I get to learn new things every day, and in truth, I have never worked for another employer.  Sustainability is a very important topic for Kalmar, both for products and employees; we have high expectations of our employees, but the working environment is very caring.  When I started as a young engineer, full of life expectations, I wanted to learn and have fun at work - now 30+ years later, I can say that Kalmar fulfilled just that, and I’m sure it will continue.

When I was young, I wanted to design cars that everyone would want. At Kalmar, I designed a rough terrain container handler and the US Army bought them -  I can’t complain.

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