THROUGH ISLET BINOCULARS: MINNA KORPELA, DEVELOPMENT MANAGER, PALKEET
Tell us a little about yourself and what kind of organization do you work and what is your role there?
I live with my family in Hämeenlinna. My free time is spent with family and hobbies for children (6, 13 and 15-year-old). I spend most of my time exercising either on jogging tracks or in the gym.
The State Treasury and Human Resources Service Center (Palkeet) is a significant group service provider in the Ministry of Finance’s administration. Our goal is to promote the efficiency of public administration by providing high-quality and cost-effective financial and human resources support and expert services. We provide financial and HR services to government agencies, institutions and funds, as well as to approximately 73,000 individual employees with approximately 660 professionals.
My role is relatively new as my current role started at the beginning of this year. My area of responsibility is the development of financial management based on common guidelines of the state administration. Financial and human resource management is developing fast and the industry’s needs are constantly changing. By 2025, according to the Palkeet and industry, automation and robotics have largely replaced basic manual tasks. In the future, the need for expert tasks will be emphasized. A change in the nature of the work has already begun. In the future, executive automation and robotics will be increasingly responsible for executive level work. Also, analytics and artificial intelligence are utilized in work tasks. From a service center perspective, future work emphasizes analysis, scenario building, recommendations for action, and support for practical decision making. We are currently reflecting on how to achieve certain levels of automation and how to ensure the skills of our own staff as work changes significantly in the industry. We have also benchmarked companies, for example, what future job roles would look like.
To which direction is your field developing?
Automation and job changes are on the board agenda. The future change is also about real-time economics, meaning that all information must be achieved in as real time as possible. More and more are being introduced for example online payments and e-receipts. We, the state, are pioneers in e-invoicing and the goal is that by the end of 2019, 95 % of the invoices we receive from the state will be e-invoices. In government bills, the target is 36 %.
Nowadays, there is the agility of change, which means that in the future it will not be necessary to spend time on IT-projects 5-10 years, they must be faster. The need for legislative change also affects our industry and this is highlighted in my own work. Often the question is how to keep the legislation up to date with the change. Things can be done as well as before, even though they are now done with the help of automation. For example, the automation provides better control than just the human eye. I believe that centralizing and automating routine activities will give the various parties better time to focus on their core tasks. As access to information becomes automated and easier, so does the need for human competence, as analysis is needed to support decision-making. From system vendors, we expect more to be done to improve the user experience, which means that the end user perspective is better considered when developing the system.
What is your organization’s key message to its stakeholders and customers?
Our customer promise is: Partner at your service.
We emphasize our willingness and ability to enhance the efficiency of public administration through cost-effective and high-quality digital services. We understand that we need to work closely with various stakeholders. We have consciously started to change the way we do things, so that working together and sharing knowledge is emphasized. For example, we have been among the first in our industry to implement software robotics to our processes. We have not been waiting for what the world will bring, but we are working actively to develop value for our customers through business development.
How does your organization retain top talents and what makes your organization a great place to work?
By providing inspiring and responsible work, that is, enough challenges and future possibilities. We strive to ensure the competence of our personnel so we can meet the future needs. We enable different knowledge and learning paths, for example, we have trained people inside the house to take on new job roles. This way we want to make sure that we have enough in-house expertise.
What is the best part of your work?
Being able to see and experience the change in the industry and to be able to influence the direction of change by moving things forward. I like being at the forefront of development to push things forward. The best thing is to work closely with different stakeholders, it being a customer or another stakeholder. Sometimes, for example, the challenge may be to see an overlap in action, with the same type of development issues being brought together with stakeholders that could have been combined and solved together. We have a very good team spirit, and even if we work hard, we usually keep our humor up to speed.
How would you describe the partnership with ISLET?
We have been very pleased with the cooperation. The expertise we received from ISLET was good and exceeded our expectations. We received a good and comprehensive pre-study on the joint project and clear action proposals for the future. It was important to have a concrete view of how a possible change would be reflected in our operations and environment. The S/4HANA Financial pre-study project helped us to see the future needs for change. ISLET was able to give a reliable picture of this. The project left all the experts and participants in good spirits, which is often rare in projects of this scale. There was a feeling that cooperation with ISLET will continue.
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