Mayor of Forssa Sami Sulkko explains that the town wants to adopt forward-looking and bold models of operation with a view to giving a boost to local companies and the region as a whole.
‘Forssa currently has Finland’s most advanced partnerships in the circular-economy field. We believe that this will give local companies a competitive edge, create opportunities to find new customers, and open new horizons in business collaboration,’ he explains.
Information spread across numerous systems
‘We realised that the information we needed had to be retrieved from multiple locations, and it took several employees to find the necessary materials from all of the various separate systems. All this created extra work and tied up resources,’ says Sulkko.
Forssa is in the process of deploying a Microsoft Dynamics CRM system with the assistance of Mepco. The pilot phase with all information already maintained in one location is still under way. Sulkko says that if this initial stage goes to plan, the town will extend rollout of the system and train more customer-service staff in its use.
‘I believe that the system will offer two pivotal benefits to Forssa and the town’s entire corporate group: Firstly, it will reduce unnecessary work and overlaps in duties. Secondly, we hope to achieve improvements in our communications with interest groups. In the near future, we will have more efficient communications with company representatives and other interest groups, such as education organisations,’ Sulkko explains.
Deployment of Social Engagement
Forssa opted to make use of Microsoft Social Engagement, integrating social-media analysis into its new CRM system. According to Sulkko, the goal is proactive use of the tool for keeping abreast of what is being said about the town through social media. The town wants to become an active contributor to online discussions by offering timely replies and input.
‘I believe that when the system is fully implemented, fully up and running, it will enable us to market the town more efficiently and productively,’ says Sulkko, assessing the system’s advantages.
Knowledge of the sector, a must for good partnership
According to Sulkko, the best partners are aware of the public sector’s unique characteristics, limitations, and challenges.
He explains: ‘A good partner listens to our views and wishes related to product development. Another characteristic we value in a partner is open-mindedness with regard to development and trying out new things.’
While the project still needs several finishing touches, Sulkko is happy with the service so far and with the perspectives the town has gained from its collaboration with Mepco.
‘Mepco takes our needs and wishes into account. We are just starting out with the system, but so far so good. I’m confident that the system will bring the benefits we are looking to gain,’ he concludes.
Accountor Enterprise Solutions was founded in January 2017 when Mepco Oy divided into two new companies.
Watch a video on the project (in Finnish):