For nearly three months, Stara has had, in its headquarters, two new employees from Germany. Ajith Sivakumar and Dominik Neumann, who are studying for a Master’s Degree at the Universität Münster, came to the town of Não Me Toque, the state of the Rio Grande do Sul, for a pioneer experience at Stara, which is a partner of the Universidade de Passo Fundo (UPF).

The students have been developing their research through the Graduate Program of Manufacturing Projects and Processes (PPGPPF) at UPF. As a result, they put into practice the theory at the company, each one in their specific area.

Ajith Sivakumar is 26 years old and worked in the Methods and Processes Department of Manufacturing Engineering. His thesis title is “Improving the General Efficiency of the Equipment by means of the Integrated Prescriptive Maintenance and Manufacturing Simulation.” The main goal is to reduce the inactivity time and increase the general productivity of the manufacturing processes. “I’ve been exploring ways to increase the efficiency of the pieces of equipment and machines by combining predictive maintenance techniques with manufacturing simulation models,” he said.

Ajith, who has been to Brazil for the first time, said that in addition to the work at Stara, he will always remember the good memories he has gotten here. “Since day one, Stara didn’t see me as an employee but as part of the family. The co-workers invited me to plenty of activities and to go to their homes to have dinner with their families. They made sure we were well treated, and this is so amazing.”

About the company, Ajith Sivakumar told us the following: “It is a huge company, but at the same time, everybody is open to innovation. The leadership welcomes questions and does everything to solve your doubts and help you at every step of the process.

Miguel Portela Valério, who is a Methods and Processes analyst, was crucial for the student’s adaptation process at Stara. “I could follow Ajith’s day-by-day, and it was a great experience. We learned a lot from him being here working with us. Especially since we understood his culture. Today, we are looking for plenty of tools outside Brazil that meet our quality parameters. And this information exchange is extremely important. I’m sure that both Ajith and Dominik have the same Stara values. Also, I noticed that our co-workers got curious about speaking another language. They are really willing to study a new one.


On the other hand, Dominik Neumann, who is 25 years old, has been developing a maturing model coverage and adapting to Sales & Operations Planning (S&OP). It recognizes its fundamental role in aligning demands and offers by means of operating prediction and planning to ensure the end customer’s satisfaction.

“The S&OP process is complex. It requires continuous cooperation among plenty of departments of an organization and a robust data flow. Due to its importance, as much the research as the industrial practice constantly seeks for innovative approaches to improve this process,” he emphasizes.


During the internship, Dominik was helped by Rafael Pinto de Toledo, who works in the Planning, Programming, and Production Control (PPCP) Department. Rafael said that this was his first experience working side by side with somebody from another country. “I’ve been studying English and majoring in Language and Literature. It was my first opportunity to speak another language every day. I was invited to work in the Planning, Programming, and Production Control (PPCP) Department. This experience means the world to me. Sharing those days with them has made me understand a lot about their culture and as professionals. I can only thank Stara for providing moments like those in the work environment.”

Dominik Neumann told us that in addition to the excellent job he could perform at Stara, he has made plenty of friends. “Stara has supported us in all the steps of our research. People are very friendly here and like to share knowledge. We have made good friends who opened their home doors to receive us and insisted on making us to feel like members of the community. I recommend the internship,” he emphasizes.

Stara is proud to share this experience, as much for employees as for foreign partners. For sure, the knowledge internship walks along with our constant evolution motto.  After all, none of us is as good at all as we all together are.