Business Finland

Modern data platform helps Finnish companies grow and internationalise

Business Finland, whose task is to assist Finnish companies to grow and internationalise by providing a wide range of services and funding, was looking to update its operations to be more data-driven and transparent. Data spread across a number of systems was to be centralised, laying the groundwork for more analytical knowledge-based management and the development of new services. The data platform built by Solita for Business Finland combines modern cloud technology and the on-premises world in a unique way – it enables new services that, together with the platform, aids Business Finland’s functions in promoting Finnish exports and help companies create new jobs.

Business Finland provides Finnish companies with services that help them develop their innovation activities and internationalise. Business Finland also invests in creating an attractive innovation environment to draw investments into Finland and promotes tourism in Finland.

Emerging from the merger of Finpro and Tekes, Business Finland was looking to combine and exploit its existing data more effectively. This was necessary to enhance operations and decision-making, as well as build new services for Finnish companies.

Results

  • 1

    Data platform – collects different data in one location and enables better exploitation

  • 2

    Foundation for new services using analytics, machine learning and artificial intelligence

  • 3

    Controlled and safe transition to the use of cloud services

  • 4

    Enables better decision-making

  • 5

    Enhances and accelerates Business Finland operations

  • 6

    Helps promote Finnish exports and the creation of new jobs

Controlled cloud transformation creates a unique combination of modern cloud technology and on-premises solutions

Cloud-based solutions are increasingly common due to their scalability and easy management. Even so, information security dictates that not all data is suitable for the cloud: Business Finland processes a great deal of highly confidential data, such as information about companies’ product development and financial situation. This is why Solita and Business Finland chose a unique hybrid model for the new data platform, combining cloud services with a conventional on-premises solution.

The data platform was customised to meet Business Finland’s needs exactly. The implementation was designed with extremely strict security requirements and for a demanding operating environment. The objective was to collect every type of data in the same location, enabling the data warehouse to also act as the platform for artificial intelligence and machine learning, which makes it possible for Business Finland to build and automate new functions.

The data platform takes in data from both internal and external sources through integrations and APIs. In addition to the technical solutions, operating models were also updated. The new platform makes data more usable for different reports, indicators and interfaces, for example enabling better overall views of customers.

”The work was seamless, and the project was successful. Solita employees are competent and skilled. IT projects sometimes go awry, but in this case, all went according to plan: we achieved the targets and have a good foundation for the future.”Pekka Pajuoja, CIO, Business Finland

Increased transparency of public spending

A key objective for the new data platform was to increase transparency regarding the public funds channelled through Business Finland to companies. As a public operator, Business Finland is required to publish funding decision information and this is done through an open interface. The aim is to increase the use of interfaces between different operators in future. The view of basic customer information and status descriptions will also be developed by connecting the information with services such as funding application services.

Modern data warehousing to provide better data for business

Business Finland was also looking to use the data platform to deepen and expand the utilisation of data in its business functions, improving data-driven decision-making. This would also improve and future-proof the services for Finnish companies.

“Business Finland aims to provide its customers with benchmarking data that they can use to improve. The idea is to have companies evaluate themselves in addition to our evaluation. Together, we will be able to plan areas for development to achieve the desired growth,” says Pekka Pajuoja, CIO at Business Finland.

“This solution allows Business Finland to later review whether its investments have created new jobs or industries. The idea is based on proactivity generated by data: Business Finland can now use data and artificial intelligence to proactively discover all potential companies and the services that suit them,” says Sami Koskivaara, Account Director at Solita.

“We want to use analytics in our management and also include data from external sources in our platform, which will give us a better picture of our various customers and industries,” says Pajuoja.

"Business Finland can now use data and AI to proactively discover all potential companies and the services that suit them."Sami Koskivaara, Account Director, Solita

Better decisions and growth for Finnish companies

The data platform gives tools for Business Finland’s various functions to develop new methods for using data. Decisions based on analytics will improve the promotion of Finnish exports and the creation of new jobs. Business Finland will be able to better advice companies in their growth and development.

Business Finland has a long history in developing advanced digital services and data-driven operations.

“We can now be more analytical and in-depth in our use of data for decision-making, and we will better understand the types of services that we can provide to Finnish companies. This solution will significantly modernise our data-driven business,” says Vesa-Pekka Juutilainen, data engineer at Business Finland.

Both Juutilainen and Pajuoja are happy with their cooperation with Solita.

“The work was seamless, and the project was successful. Solita employees are competent and skilled. IT projects sometimes go awry, but in this case, all went according to plan: we achieved the targets and have a good foundation for the future,” says Pajuoja.

Technologies

Microsoft Azure
Agile Data Engine
Snowflake
Power BI
Databricks

Do you want to know more? Contact us!

Sami Koskivaara

Account Director, Business Lead

sami.koskivaara@solita.fi