Solita has been helping Matkahuolto build modern cloud-based data and analytics solutions for use in various businesses since 2020. Matkahuolto’s goals were achieved with a fully cloud-based SaaS technology suite. The data development and operational solution is Solita’s Agile Data Engine, which guaranteed a quick start for the project: it only took a few weeks for the solution to generate value for Matkahuolto’s business.
Matkahuolto is a service, marketing and sales company owned by Finland’s bus companies, in operation for nearly 90 years, which enables people and packages to move easily and quickly to all parts of Finland. Digitalisation has shifted schedules, ticketing, and the sending and receiving of parcels rapidly to mobile applications that focus on data.
Data at the heart of the business
Matkahuolto has been focusing significantly on developing its digital business services and capabilities since 2019.
“From the start, it was clear that data gathering and analysis were a core part of both the business and digital service development. Creating the right kind of data capability was an important cornerstone for Matkahuolto’s digital capabilities. In addition to traditional knowledge-based management, the goal was to create a foundation for new business and advanced analytics,” says Matkahuolto’s CIO&CDO Mika Rajanen.
Since 2020, Solita has been helping Matkahuolto to build modern cloud-based data and analytics solutions for use in various businesses. New capabilities have quickly changed the way the company plans and manages its operations.
“We chose Solita for their data and technology expertise, which was particularly important in building new capability,” says Mika Rajanen.
A large part of the change is that being data-driven is now everyone’s business, not just management or the analysts. The solutions have been created to be as close to everyone at Matkahuolto. In practice, this means that solutions have been built from concrete use cases, together with the entire staff. This ensures that all development generates genuine value for the business.
“In the past, the role of data solutions was to produce a monthly report on how the business is doing. Now, the data is a core part of the business: instead of monitoring, it is used to run and even create new business,” says Jani Kemppainen, Matkahuolto’s Head of Business Intelligence and Analytics to explain the change.
In addition, a lot of attention has been paid to making sure that the solutions are accessible and easy to use.
“I believe that it is very important for everyone to have access to easy-to-use visual analytics. While the solutions are also used in traditional reporting, the greatest benefits have come from the fact that new user groups have found perspectives in the data that no one had ever thought to look for before,” Kemppainen continues.
Data services for partners
A wide range of data sources has been introduced in Matkahuolto’s data platform, such as traffic, ticket sales and transportation. Various internal reports and analytics tools have been built on these sets of data for management, as well as other personnel and stakeholders. Data usage has become part of daily work.
However, Matkahuolto has not contented itself with purely internal development, but the company’s nature, as a platform, has also been involved from the beginning – how can Matkahuolto also serve its extensive network in the digital world.
“When several different actors use and refine data, it creates a data ecosystem that benefits all the parties,” Kemppainen explains Matkahuolto’s mindset.
Flexible technology package
From a technological point of view, Matkahuolto’s data and analytics solution is aimed at being agile, scalable and cost-effective. These goals were achieved with a fully cloud-based SaaS technology suite. Solita’s Agile Data Engine operates as a data development and operational solution.
“The package works together seamlessly and reliably. Solita’s ADE guaranteed a very fast start to the project: in a couple of weeks, the solution was already creating value to the business,” says Kemppainen about the benefits of the chosen technologies.
In addition to accelerating development, ADE also provides continuity and reliability in changing situations. Thanks to its intuitive usage and illustrative self-study materials, it is possible to scale the development team up in an agile manner as needed. At the moment, the team includes Solita people as well as third-party experts.
“ADE has proven its strength in data development. It significantly affects the speed and quality of our ability to develop new services for internal and external customers,” Kemppainen praises.
A solution for the needs of today and tomorrow
“To be honest, despite the excellent results, we are still in the early stages. We regard this as continuous learning,” says Kemppainen regarding Matkahuolto’s development philosophy.
However, business benefits are at the heart of everything. Data is only collected and processed for concrete use cases.
“We don’t gather data ‘just in case’. Everything must be based on the value produced for the customers,” Kemppainen says.
“This is where Solita has been an excellent sparring partner: they have not been content to simply implement the features we have asked for, but have constantly challenged us in how we can support our and our customers’ business in the best possible way.”