Gunilla Höög

She is a senior in the industry, but new to consulting. Meet Gunilla Höög, the Södertälje girl who started her career at Astra (now Astra Zeneca) right after completing chemistry at high school. She began her career as a laboratory technician by performing analyses on products and raw materials. After a few stopovers, she finally ended up in Örebro and when she called Astra's factory in Karlskoga (now Recipharm Karlskoga) and asked if there were jobs as a laboratory technician, the answer was yes. But how did Gunilla end up leaving the forests of Värmland?
Gunilla Höög, Consultant at Plantvision AB Gunilla Höög, Consultant at Plantvision AB

I started working in Astra's factory in 1996, in the lab, but after only 1-2 years as a lab technician I started working a lot with different types of computerized systems, mainly in quality assurance, validation and system management. Before the turn of the millennium, the focus was on updating and changing different types of computerized systems and I had the opportunity to participate in two such projects already in 1997. Since then I have worked with implementation, validation, quality assurance (QA) and management of computerized systems. I have worked with LIMS systems in some form for more than 25 years, but I also have experience with many other types of lab systems.

As you can hear, there is no doubt that Gunilla possesses senior competence. After 25 years at the same workplace (Astra sold the factory in 2004 to Recip, now called Recipharm), she ended up at Plantvision as a Senior Consultant in Quality Management (QA/Validation) in Life Science Compliance. But how did Gunilla end up in a consulting role after all these years and why does it suit her?

I am curious and enjoy solving problems. It suits me very well as I now have an assignment that I feel secure in, but I can also think of other assignments in the future where I can use my experience and learn new things at the same time. Even though I have long experience of GMP and am confident in the regulations, it sometimes differs slightly between different companies and within different assignments, something that you can more easily gain an insight into as a consultant with different clients. Where I came from, I knew everything about the business, but now I have to read instructions and familiarize myself with the quality system of the business I support as a consultant. It's a lot of fun because I get to rethink and learn from the experiences of others. So I'm actually a bit junior now, even though I'm very senior in the industry.

After being at the same workplace for over 25 years, Gunilla felt it was time for something new and Plantvision popped into her head. The company that she had met consultants from through her job and from which newsletters occasionally dropped into her inbox. Gunilla looked to see if there were any vacancies and there were. No sooner said than done, she applied for the role of QA computerized systems.

Gunilla, why do you like Plantvision as an employer?

I think Plantvision cares about its staff. Even if we don't always work together, because we are geographically spread out among different customers, I still feel that we belong to a community. You belong together in some way and it is so nice that Plantvision's main focus is to take care of its staff. It's really wonderful and fantastic! In addition, I get the opportunity to share my knowledge, for example by holding training courses that Plantvision holds externally. In this context, I really feel that my wishes and needs to try new things are listened to.

Are there challenges with the job? Oh yes, but Gunilla doesn't shy away from finding solutions.

A classic example is when you find yourself in the situation of trying to explain and convince someone who does not have GxP knowledge about why you have to do something to meet requirements. Then it is easy to be questioned by someone who lacks understanding of GxP and the pharmaceutical industry. Here you have to be able to stand your ground in certain situations and then it is of course an advantage to be senior and confident in your competence. But what is challenging is often also the most fun. Being able to solve problems and get questions where I as a QA really get to be challenged, figure out and develop explanations based on my knowledge to be able to provide answers or suggestions for solutions - I like that. It is important to have a dialog with the person who needs help and not infrequently you get input that you have not thought of initially.

Teamwork is a key factor for success. At Plantvision, we want everyone to feel a sense of belonging, regardless of whether you work at Location in one of our offices or if you are a consultant on various assignments with customers. Helping each other with the challenges you have is seen as a matter of course.

In my current assignment, we are very busy, but we help each other out and there is a high level of cooperation. Every morning we have a morning meeting where we prioritize the day's work. It can be high and low, we support, help and prioritize together. Even meetings are sometimes held via Teams so you get to see each other. Then we see it a bit like "This is our pile to do - together.", even if you have your own responsibilities and areas.

We thank Gunilla for the chat and wish her all the best in her consulting assignment at Astra Zeneca as QA for computerized systems in QC/Lab equipment and we are convinced that the future has more exciting, challenging and rewarding assignments that will end up in Gunilla's path.

Gunilla Höög

Role: Senior Consultant Quality and Compliance
Team: Compliance
Location: Södertälje

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