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Järvenpää reaches the forefront of knowledge management

The City of Järvenpää is now able to produce reports from various information systems quickly and cost-efficiently. The aim was to harness more knowledge for decision-making and share it openly with the municipal residents.

When the City of Järvenpää launched cooperation with Netum, the city had already started building a technical foundation for knowledge management. However, the reporting remained fragmented, and the databank was insufficient. What the city had, instead, was an ambitious vision for knowledge management.

– We wanted to consciously improve the level of knowledge management. We would improve the quality of the information and make it a central part of all decision-making in the future. The City of Järvenpää would become a pioneer in the municipal sector, says Markus Lauriala, Acting CIO at the City of Järvenpää.

Netum’s task was to hop onto a moving train. The existing technical solution was developed on top of a new Azura data platform with the introduction of modern Synapse technology.

The scrum team of the City of Järvenpää has coordinated the entire project. Netum has acted as a partner, a coach and a facilitator, especially in the development and implementation of the data platform. Sebastian Pönkkö from Netum finds the implementation method of the project to be very successful.

– The City of Järvenpää has managed to pull off a project that is quite unusual for the municipal sector. The scrum team was put together in a clever way and the groundwork was thorough, says Pönkkö.

Focusing on business modelling

One of the key factors in the knowledge management of the City of Järvenpää is the database automation that required close cooperation from Netum and DSharp. Database automation is based on conceptual modelling implemented by DSharp. Using a model to build a database means that nobody has to code it. According to Tero-Matti Kinanen, CEO of DSharp, the City of Järvenpää genuinely understands the meaning of agile development.

– The City of Järvenpää has started using the reports as soon as they are completed, enabling them to enjoy the results of the work at once. This translates to quick and significant benefits from the database automation.

Business benefits have constantly remained the common theme of the development.

– Modelling the business operations has played a vital role in bringing the City of Järvenpää to the forefront of knowledge management in the municipal sector, says Kinanen.

The quality of data comes first

The City of Järvenpää now has a modern knowledge management architecture and data model that enable the quick and efficient production of reports. The subjects of the reports include basic education, the environment, employment, population development, housing, and infrastructure. The scale is constantly expanded.

– The model works very well and we are able to combine data from different source systems, produce reports compiled from various data files in a cost-effective manner and present the data visually, says Lauriala.

Improving the quality of data has been one of the most important goals for Lauriala.

– To make knowledge management truly possible, the quality of the data must be sufficiently high. The use of databases, in particular, has given us insight on how to improve the quality of data where it is produced.

Transparent decision-making and information for municipal residents

The City of Järvenpää wants to carry out knowledge management as openly as possible. The city employs about 1,500 data workers who can use the city’s intranet to browse nearly all the reports made available to the city’s administration. In addition, the city wishes to make the information on which decision-making is based available to the municipal residents.

– Our procurement calendar is already published on our website where anyone can see it. In the future, we want the municipal residents to see up-to-date data on the city’s population development, employment and building stock, for example. Järvenpää aims to be a pioneer when it comes to the openness of data, says Lauriala.

For Lauriala, knowledge management means better decision-making.

– Previously, many decisions were based on emotions or experiences. Today, decisions can be made based on facts. If the administration is strategically committed to knowledge management, like in Järvenpää, the city has enormous potential for developing and improving its decision-making processes. This translates to better services for the municipal residents, says Lauriala.

Knowledge management projects have a reputation for costing time and money. Lauriala wishes to challenge this myth and encourages even the smallest steps.

– As long as you have great partners and an open-minded attitude, getting started does not actually consume a lot of resources.

Cerion Solutions Oy, that nowadays belongs to Netum Group Plc, was responsible for the execution. Netum Group Plc purchased the entire share capital of Cerion Solutions Oy on 1 October 2021. Under the new organisational structure, the employees and operations of Cerion transferred to Netum Ltd on 1 October 2022, and Cerion Solutions Oy officially merged with Netum Ltd as of 31 January 2022.