Building the best digital city in the world

The city of Helsinki chose us as their digital companion for a long-term strategic partnership in the summer of 2018. The aim of our partnership is to develop, clarify and improve the Culture and Leisure sector’s digital service offering. We are completely transforming the ways in which the City of Helsinki approaches and interacts with the citizens of Helsinki online by making a wide range of services more accessible and attractive through seamless digital solutions.

           Keywords

          Co-design

          Service path

          Roadmap 

          User testing 

          Service Design

          Design System

         

Helsinki’s digital challenges

The Culture and Leisure Sector supports people’s mental and physical well-being, active citizenship and general knowledge of the city and its activities. It has three divisions: Culture, Sports, and Youth. They include the city’s cultural services, sports facilities, and youth work. Their operations emphasize the freedom to choose, to be yourself and to find activities that interest you the most.   

In 2018, the city of Helsinki had over 130 incoherent sites for different services and activities. Different departments and sections had been creating sites that communicated in a one-way manner and neglected the needs of the users. Neither the citizens of Helsinki nor the people working for the city knew where to find relevant information. The culture and leisure sector did not have a clear digital strategy or goals to work towards, and a lot of resources were wasted by keeping an incoherent system in place.

The sites were difficult to maintain and to update. Information was all over the place, the site architectures were rigid and target groups were not defined clearly. We wanted to understand the city’s digital services as a whole, create a long-term plan for the future and give users much-needed attention. 

Understanding the user’s digital path

Achieving changes required us to dive deep into the needs, motivations, and expectations of Helsinki’s people. The whole project is not just about renewing websites related to culture and leisure services or combining old services together – we want to understand the overall service path of users so that we can serve them seamlessly in the online environment.

We took a service design approach to get into the core of the challenge: we defined different user segments and their unique characteristics to find out how digital services can best support their needs. We’re looking at culture and leisure activities as one whole to avoid separating essential information into silos.

Over 4000 citizens participated in the process of designing Helsinki’s new digital services by answering questionnaires and taking part in interviews, workshops and safaris. The city’s culture and leisure sector professionals from a number of different levels and professions also had a big impact on the design process.

Creating a service roadmap 

We have built a complete roadmap for the culture and leisure sector in close collaboration with the Helsinki team. First, we determined the vision for the city’s digital services and a big-picture plan for what should be accomplished with the upcoming services. The main idea of the roadmap is to implement a seamless service path and a quality user experience. The goal was to provide a comprehensive image of Helsinki’s service offering and intuitive ways to find information.

The city’s service offering is divided into four large categories: events, youth, sports, and culture. Individual sites were born from a user-driven approach: we researched how people understand the concepts of culture and free time as well as their sub-categories, be it arts, culture, sports or outdoor activities. We also identified international brands that have the right to stand out from the rest. For example, Oodi can be seen as the flagship of Finland – it is a very well-known international brand and the new pride of Helsinki that expects 2.5 million visitors per year. It was important for Oodi to have its own identity.

A number of goals have been achieved, but there is still a lot of work to do in order to achieve the bold target of creating the world’s best digital culture and leisure city. One digital service at a time, we will continue to make the lives of 631 695 habitants of Helsinki and its numerous visitors more convenient.

Essi Eranka for the city of Helsinki talks about our partnership

Current launches

 

Oodi

We built an online home for the central library Oodi, the city’s new pride and an important meeting place for thousands.

 

Helsinki Liikkuu

We are helping the people of Helsinki find their favorite ways to stay active through the Helsinki Liikkuu portal. 

Töölönlahti

We’ve given residents an opportunity to affect the development and service offering of the lovely Töölönlahti area.

Project team

Service Designer

Emilia Nykänen

emilia

Service Designer

Emilia Nykänen

I love humans! And human interaction. And problems. And solving them together.

Inside of me there is a little hippie, who loves nature. My freetime is spent either blown by the wind while kitesurfing, riding powder in the mountains (hills) or just wondering around forests.

Account Manager

Jenni Rinne

jenni from evermade

Account Manager

Jenni Rinne

Hi there!

My name is Jenni and I work as an Account Manager at Evermade, which basically means that my job is to keep my team busy and clients happy. It’s a very inspiring position to be in, since I get to be part of projects that actually make a difference. While my production team does all the ‘dirty work’ when developing and designing the actual services, I am the one responsible for the projects and accounts in general.

My favourite quote is from the former Finnish President Mauno Koivisto, which freely translated goes “Unless we know with certainty what will happen, let’s assume everything is going well.” I try to keep these wise words in mind when dealing with projects.

I love traveling, food and sports. When I am not busy with work, you may find me at the gym or running the Helsinki seaside. Nothing makes me happier than a long run on a sunny day.

Analytics Developer

Juha Lehtonen

Analytics Developer

Juha Lehtonen

I used to be a designer, but then I took an arrow to the knee was sat down in front of Sublime Text and was told to make code happen. Since then, I’ve spent the last half a decade at Evermade working at various roles and projects, having finally more or less settled on the beautiful marriage of data & code: analytics and statistics bundled up with full-stack development.

I love conducting experiments and trying out new things, especially if those new things bend my mind a bit. I’m transparent and open, I challenge the defaults, and I ask the question “why?” a lot. I strongly believe that shared understanding is critically important for successful collaboration, and that openness and insistence on clear communication are a great way to get there.

Things I enjoy outside of my professional life include (but are not limited to) good coffee, video games and nature (especially when hiking there).

Developer

Tuulikki Laine

tuulikki

Developer

Tuulikki Laine

I used to work in the field of web analytics and digital marketing before following my true passion to become a full-time coder.  I get my kicks from solving interesting problems and working with both frontend and backend.

I have endless curiosity about how things work – when I see something cool I ask myself how was that made and how could I build something like that. That’s what got me into programming in the first place.

In my free time, I’m a board game geek and an occasional singer in a band.

Project Manager

Joakim Larres

joakim

Project Manager

Joakim Larres

Hejssan!

My name is Joakim and I work as a Project Manager here at Evermade. It´s a bit like being a chef/waiter/dishwasher in a creative kitchen. You have pots and pans with mysterious ingredients brewing here and there. Sometimes the sauce boils over and sometimes the curtains catch fire but the end result is always delicious!

In my spare time I act as a peace negotiator between my three very active kids. And if I find the time I like to be outdoors. Any adventure will do, be it hiking, windsurfing, skiing, riding my motorcycle or just lounging at the summer cottage. Oh, and I recently climbed a mountain (like a real one, with snow on top). Bucket list, check!

Developer

Oliver Granlund

oliver from evermade

Developer

Oliver Granlund

Hey! I’m Oliver ‘Olli’ Granlund and I’m a developer here at Evermade.

I used to work with different CMS:es but after landing my first real dev-job at an Ad Agency I haven’t really used any other CMS than WordPress. In my daily work, I focus on creating polished products with a solid foundation. Making things work and look pretty brings joy to me.

I have a tendency to challenge myself with different things, both by the computer and away from it. Here are a few hobbies that stuck on with me over the years:
Photography ( also doing freelancing )
Videography
Building mechanical keyboards
Brewing beer

For sports, I like biking with my road bike and my fixie, occasionally hit the gym, snowboarding in the winter and also crush my co-workers in badminton.

Web Analytics Specialist

Vilma Järvinen

vilma

Web Analytics Specialist

Vilma Järvinen

I work as an analytics specialist at Evermade. My main focus is on web analytics and in search engine optimization work. With analytics and search engine optimization, my aim is to grow businesses through better communication and develop decision-making processes.

What describes me the most is that I like to have clear goals and targets for projects and continuous work. This I practice in all the areas I work with. One of the key factors is that our client’s goals are always our goals.

Why do I think analytics is important? There are a lot more to offer than just pageviews, sessions and bounce rate figures – with setting proper measurement for your site, it can bring you valuable information about your customer engagement, e-commerce and basically just what works and what doesn’t. Taking web analytics as a part of your marketing and sales work, you will be in constant connection with your clients and on top of your game. Knowledge is power!

Analytics is just one part of a website’s development work. Optimizing your site for users and search engines is crucial for your sites visibility, ranking, and general work experience. What this basically means is taking care of your site’s technical elements that influence search engine crawling and optimizing your content for the users (and okay, for the bots as well). I think the benefit of doing proper SEO work is quite simple – wouldn’t any business rather want to have as much free traffic as possible than use a lot of money for advertising to receive visitors?

I have worked with a number of companies, primarily in eCommerce, B2B, FMCG and the publishing industry.

I am familiar especially with these tools and specialties:

Google Analytics
Google Ads
Google Data Studio
Screaming Frog
Moz
AWR Cloud
Content optimization
Technical SEO

I make data understandable for different businesses and help them find the most relevant information for their business.

Developer

Antti Roos

antti

Developer

Antti Roos

Back in the 80’s, I used to wear baseball hats even when it wasn’t sunny or wear them backwards when it actually was sunny. Also, I wore big pants, skateboarded, listened to rap music and occasionally made graffiti art.

It wasn’t the easiest way of being back then, but now I feel I should thank all the stuck-up people for not understanding, and all the cops and guards who chased me down the streets. Because that just encouraged me to keep looking for new things that had that flare others were confused about or afraid of.

Now years later I’m working at Evermade, still looking for the next wave.

Designer

Sauli Puukangas

sauli

Designer

Sauli Puukangas

I mainly design websites, but can handle almost everything. I have some front-end development experience, so I also understand websites. I think that it’s just not about how websites look like, but the whole experience and function.

I have been cruising around Western Finland. Born in Käläviä and moved to Tornio to study fine arts. After graduated from the fine arts program I moved to Turku. After 3 -years in Turku, I moved to Helsinki. And here I am.

I spend my spare time in the woods, either with my dog or my bike. Every once in awhile I go climbing out/indoors. I also have to admit that I’m a Jokerit fan. See you in the games 😉  

+358 40 835 4997
sauli.puukangas@evermade.fi

CTO

Jaakko Alajoki

jaakko

CTO

Jaakko Alajoki

I was founding Evermade back in 2011. I started as a developer. I’m still on that track leading our dev team and getting my hands dirty with projects.

I’m primarily a technical dude but during my career I’ve been also doing sales, managing projects, running opportunistic startup(s), being CEO, cleaning our office toilets, creating videos and working as a graphic designer. And written a book. I enjoy in stepping out of my comfort zone and seeing if I can float.

I like sports in general – like kayakingrunning & swimming – but I’m especially known as an active cyclist (some could call it obsession) and cycling blogger/youtuber. In addition to that I’m spending time with my family and enjoying nature in all of it’s forms.

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