It has already been a year since Daniel Bunse stepped into the role of the new CEO of Rethink Robotics. Therefore, it is time to reflect on the past 12 months. In the interview with Daniel, we look back on the most important stations of the company within the last 12 months and give an insight into the individual corporate culture of Rethink Robotics.
Congratulations on the first anniversary, Daniel! How has Rethink Robotics developed so far under your leadership?
Definitely into a positive direction, however, this was not my sole achievement, but the result of our successful work as a team. The past year brought some major milestones, which have attracted a lot of attention, especially in the last few weeks. The opening of our new company headquarters in Bochum is still a buzzing topic right now.
But first things first: The start of my work as CEO was shaped by the fact that we took a particularly close look at the existing cobot Sawyer technology and its market environment. It was about deciding where we want to go as a company. We quickly realized that the most important step was to develop new technologies. For this reason, we have invested heavily in our growth and built a team with highly qualified individuals. Since March, the number of our colleagues has doubled to around 30 people. We are all working together in Bochum now.
What makes the Bochum location so special?
Our new premises are integrated into the HAHN Group Technology Center, which serves as a meeting point for customers, employees and experts to exchange current knowledge, technologies and innovations with one another. In addition, we have our own production areas in Bochum. This means that development and production are very close to each other, which enables a very fast exchange so that new ideas and developments can be tested and implemented directly.
Another important factor is that we are not only physically very close to local universities and colleges, but also maintain good relationships with them. In this way, we also stay up to date technologically and offer graduates the opportunity to stay in the region and help shape the robotics industry in the Ruhr area.
That sounds like a very exciting environment! What is it like to work at Rethink Robotics? What is particularly important to you in your corporate culture?
The robotics industry is a very rapidly changing technology environment. This means that not only specialist knowledge, but also a lot of creativity and a wealth of ideas are required in order to keep up with this progress and to develop the right solutions for customers. In order to encourage this creativity, I cultivate an open communication culture at Rethink Robotics. Because ideas only lead to success if you give them the space to discuss and develop them further. This open exchange and the feeling of togetherness within the team are important to bring products forward.
What exactly do you pay attention to when you are interviewing an applicant?
Of course, the professional qualifications need to be right, as we have very complex tasks ahead of us. In view of this complexity, however, it is all the more important that the person fits in well with our team and can integrate well. This does not mean that everyone is the same though; we consciously promote diversity. It is very good that our employees come from numerous countries and regions and represent different age groups. After all, through their various experiences, every person brings new ideas and approaches to solutions that move us forward in our work.
What is your goal for Rethink Robotics?
We are currently building up competencies in various fields relating to robotics. This enables us to stay agile and react flexibly to new market developments. In the long term, we see ourselves as a player in the Ruhr area who actively shapes the robotics industry and develops new products. Since I come from the Ruhr area myself and studied in Bochum, it is important that we tie in with the trends of the region and help shape the transformation from a mining hub to a high-tech location. This is also a core issue of the RAG-Stiftung, which is one of our long-term partners with RSBG SE as HAHN Group investor. Together, the RSBG and HAHN Group focus on expanding technologies and competencies in the areas of automation, robotics, Industry 4.0 and digitization.