kaupunginjohtaja Jere Penttilä

Know­led­ge-based mana­ge­ment impro­ves work proces­ses and deci­sion-making

Good policy preparations use information from different sources as much as possible

Munici­pa­li­ties and cities have plen­ty of infor­ma­tion in their own sys­tems and open­ly avai­lable. Infor­ma­tion is avai­lable about whe­re resi­dents live, their age, their inco­me level and wealth, their educa­tion, what do they do for a living and how they move around and use ser­vices. We also have access to infor­ma­tion about their health, ill­nes­ses, lifes­ty­les and hob­bies. Natu­ral­ly, the data of indi­vi­dual resi­dents is not moni­to­red, nor is this even pos­sible wit­hin the limits per­mit­ted by data pro­tec­tion, but inc­rea­sing infor­ma­tion opens up a who­le ran­ge of oppor­tu­ni­ties.

Do we use this infor­ma­tion to orga­ni­se our ser­vices? Part­ly yes, but the­re is still plen­ty of room for impro­ve­ment.

When it comes to data ana­ly­sis, arti­ficial intel­li­gence crea­tes a major new oppor­tu­ni­ty and impro­ves futu­re pre­dic­tion. Exten­si­ve data resources can be exploi­ted when you know how to discuss with arti­ficial intel­li­gence and ask it the right ques­tions. Arti­ficial intel­li­gence will be our col­lea­gue in the futu­re, whet­her we want it or not, and it will impro­ve pro­duc­ti­vi­ty.

Infor­ma­tion can also be used to tar­get our ser­vices. Well­being ser­vices coun­ties in par­ticu­lar have great oppor­tu­ni­ties when it comes to pre­ven­ting disea­ses and pro­vi­ding time­ly advice or treat­ment.

Befo­re taking the office of may­or, I wor­ked for Finland’s lar­gest retail com­pa­ny. My work expe­rience has taught me that a company’s ope­ra­tions are based, and to a lar­ge extent, on data mana­ge­ment and con­nec­ting data for work proces­ses.

A company’s pro­fi­ta­bi­li­ty starts with the ser­vice network, i.e. whe­re to start new busi­ness and whe­re to lea­ve. A success­ful retail venue network requi­res good data mana­ge­ment, a well-func­tio­ning process and nume­rous specia­lists from the first pha­se of plan­ning to detai­led imple­men­ta­tion. In munici­pa­li­ties, the ser­vice network, and most impor­tant­ly the school network, con­tain simi­lar ele­ments.

It is impor­tant that eve­ry­one has the same view of the situa­tion. Good policy pre­pa­ra­tions use infor­ma­tion from dif­fe­rent sources as much as pos­sible.

Demo­grap­hic data and forecasts, i.e. growing and decli­ning regions, are taken into account when set­ting up a retail venue. Infor­ma­tion on com­pe­ti­tors, geos­pa­tial data and maps, plan­ning and upco­ming infra­struc­tu­re pro­jects are also avai­lable for our use. We also have avai­lable records of cus­to­mer data and the purc­ha­sing power of the region as well as migra­tion pat­terns.

In retail, cus­to­mer data pro­vi­des infor­ma­tion about which pro­ducts you should sell and at what price. Munici­pal ser­vices, of cour­se, also inclu­de values other than just maxi­mi­sing sales and financial pro­fit. Emo­tions, values and many other human fac­tors influence the deci­sion on the loca­tion and qua­li­ty of ser­vices.

Munici­pa­li­ties and well­being ser­vices coun­ties still have a lot to learn about how the pri­va­te sec­tor pro­duces ser­vices and stream­li­nes proces­ses. When financial resources are limi­ted, it is worth making the most of them.

At its best, know­led­ge-based mana­ge­ment impro­ves democ­racy as it grants us access to infor­ma­tion and the abi­li­ty to make deci­sions based on a wide ran­ge of data. Howe­ver, it should also be noted that, when it comes to cities, the­se things are often complex, and misused or misin­terpre­ted data can also lead to subop­ti­mal deci­sions.

Efficient ope­ra­tions ensu­re the best pos­sible uti­li­sa­tion of tax assets. Tax hikes are jus­ti­fied in cer­tain situa­tions, but they can­not be used as the basis of the pro­vi­sion of public ser­vices. The ageing popu­la­tion and fal­ling birth rates mean that the­re are fewer wor­king-age tax payers. In the short term, immi­gra­tion can­not be used to impro­ve the situa­tion, alt­hough its impact will be grea­ter in the futu­re.

It is impor­tant that eve­ry­one has the same view of the situa­tion. Good policy pre­pa­ra­tions use infor­ma­tion from dif­fe­rent sources as much as pos­sible. This pro­vi­des a strong basis for reliable and con­sis­tent deci­sion-making.

Deci­sion-making also invol­ves fee­lings and intui­tion, which must also be allowed. Good deci­sions are made in an atmosp­he­re of trust, a com­pro­mi­se between compre­hen­si­ve know­led­ge, huma­ne values and stra­te­gic rea­so­ning.

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