Innovation and Expertise: Inside the Design Engineer's World

Meet Helle Toxi, one of our dedicated design engineers whose passion for technology and design has led her to the role of lead designer with us at Backer for the important segment of engine heaters. Her journey from engineer to a central role in the development of engine heaters is rooted in a combination of talent and an unwavering pursuit of knowledge and improvement.

Bengt Carlsson förklarar energianläggningen på Backer i Sösdala

From Engineer to Design Lead: A Journey Through Technology and Creativity

Helle began her technology journey in high school, where she opted for a technology direction that later led her to become an engineer. This decision was not just a step in the right direction towards her future career but also a leap into a world full of opportunities. "I did my internship at Backer, and that led to a job after I completed my education. I then started with tool design for our products," Helle recounts. This early work laid the groundwork for her understanding of the production process – invaluable experience as she later took on more advanced design projects in the development department.

Her career drive is a combination of an interest in design and problem-solving. "The reason I chose the path I did was because of its scope and the many doors it could open," she explains. Pure luck may have brought her to Backer, but it was her competence and commitment that secured her place here. Now, seven years later, Helle is a key player in the company's successes.

Engineering Creativity: A Peek into the Designer's Daily Work

As the lead designer for engine heaters, Helle spends her days deeply immersed in design and construction. Using the CAD program Creo to create 3D drawings is just one part of her workflow. A lot of time is also spent in Epicor, which is our business system. "It's a varied existence. It's not just about developing new products but also about improving and refining existing ones," she says.

One of the projects where pride shines a bit extra is the development of a new variant of engine heaters, a project that now generates between 5,000-7,500 units a week. "It feels fantastic to see our products make a real difference," Helle shares.

Helle Toxi's work extends beyond traditional design. As an expert on the company's enterprise system, Epicor, Helle plays a pivotal role in supporting not just the design team but other departments as well. She is responsible for training staff on specific subsystems, developing and programming new dashboards for the Development Department, and creating manuals that simplify the understanding of Epicor's functions and the company's processes. Her ability to adjust the system through fine-tuning and updates significantly contributes to streamlining workflows across the entire company.

The Process of Developing New Products

Helle is deeply involved in every step of the product development process, from the initial technical proposal based on customer specifications to the final approval of the first series-produced product. She performs test calculations for the heating elements, ensures the product is manufacturable, and then leads the work through the critical phases of prototype manufacturing, acting as the main contact point for any questions or decisions. Helle also plays a crucial role in updates to product design and component structure in CAD, Epicor, and Elber, and works closely with the purchasing department to approve components for series production.

Genomströmmare från Backer AB

3D drawing of a flow-through heater as described. It illustrates water moving through a cylindrical tank or tube, with internal electrical heating elements designed to heat the water as it flows.

Collaborations and Improvement Work

Beyond her technical expertise and leadership in the product development process, Helle is a key player in driving improvements in existing products and processes. She collects reports on improvement suggestions, wishes, or faults, often with the help of feedback from production, sales, and quality departments. Her work in identifying and implementing quick solutions to optimize the trial process underscores her ability to work efficiently under time pressure.

Promotion of Technology and Collaborations

Helle Toxi's commitment also extends to promoting technology among young girls and encouraging diversity and inclusion within the technology field. By sharing her experience and knowledge, not just internally but also externally through collaborations with customers and suppliers, Helle contributes to creating an open and innovative environment where technical solutions can continuously be developed and improved.

Teamwork at the Core: Driving Success Through Collective Effort

Collaboration within the team and with other departments is critical to Backer's success. Helle describes a culture of collaboration and the desire to constantly improve. "Our collaboration within the team is fantastic, and there is always room to grow and explore new opportunities," she says.

As a designer, one works together with most functions in the company – from sales, purchasing, testing, and quality to close cooperation with the customer.

Challenges and Creativity: Navigating the Path of Continuous Improvement

At Backer, we support our employees in their pursuit of continuous development and learning, something that Helle values highly. "In the design department, it's possible to choose a direction based on our interests. I have had the privilege to work with a wide range of products," she says.

Challenges such as time pressure are handled with creativity and innovation. Helle emphasizes the importance of working efficiently and educating customers about what is possible within a given timeframe.

Looking Ahead: Vision for Improving and Streamlining Production Processes

As Helle looks forward, it is with a vision to continue improving and streamlining production processes. "I hope to get more involved in process improvements and have the opportunity to delve deeper into aluminum products even more. There's always room to optimize," she reflects. For potential new colleagues, Helle has simple but powerful advice: "Expect a learning journey. Technology is constantly changing, and there's always something new to learn."

CAD på Backer

Helle concludes with an important piece of advice for everyone in technology and design: "Dare to think outside the box. Without creativity and innovation, development stalls." Her journey is proof of the power of continuous learning, collaboration, and innovation – a journey that inspires exploring the boundless possibilities of technology.

Are you interested in learning more about work at Backer? Visit our career site to see our available positions.

How can we help you?