A fair few years ago, I was giving a speech at an e-invoicing conference in London, with 300 people in front of me. As I was talking, my phone blinked: I’d received an invoice in Nordea’s service, which I promptly paid by responding ‘A’. A couple of clicks, and that was it. “By the way, you may have not noticed I just paid an invoice because I didn’t even have to slow down my speech,” I told the audience.
That’s how simple and easy using financial services should be. Just like Tieto in its 50 years of existence, I’ve been striving to make services in general more efficient through digitalization for decades – including with Tieto as the Head of Executive Advisors.
However, no single person or organization can bring about the changes alone. For example, implementing e-receipts would be impossible without collaboration, as it needs to be standardized and involve all parties.
E-invoicing is an excellent example. As municipalities, governments, and the private sector join forces and demand and offer e-invoicing, the annual savings in Finland alone have been estimated to amount to over 3 billion euros. Thanks to co-innovation and excellent software engineering, Finland is a global frontrunner in e-invoicing.
When you hear you’ve helped someone save 3 billion, you start to feel important; but there’s no stopping yet. There’s still plenty more to come.
With the power of collaboration, what first seems like a radical change soon turns into a quintessential part of daily life. Tieto supported Union Bank of Finland when the first online banks in the world were developed – TeleUBF in 1979 and HomeUBF in 1982. As homebanking was established, people suddenly didn’t need to leave home (or the office) to take care of their finances. Now, using digital authentication (TUPAS) is another standard that utilizes bank codes to log in to several public and private sector online services saves both nerves of users and costs of public services – an estimated 100 million times in the 100year jubilary 2017.
The next big deal will surely be MyData – well supported by GDPR, PSD2 and Distributed Ledger technology. It will disrupt the way we see and treat customers: we should forget about customer segments and start looking at customer situations. Also, there are no longer corporate customers, as corporations don’t use services – their people do. Whatever role they’re in, it’s their situation that matters, be it a buying or selling an apartment, applying for a job, going to the doctor, getting married, having a baby etc. The service design should aim clinical simplicity and similarity over both roles and contexts and the see to it that the data needed is automatically served easily, quickly and safely, respecting their digital human rights.
These ideas don’t come about just for the sake of innovation. The savings in terms of costs and the environment created with e-invoicing can be copied elsewhere. Our Real Time Economy Program, where Tieto was the founder, is looking for ways to half the administrative costs of SMEs, automating and speeding up processes and thus bringing remarkable benefits to both companies and the society in general.
Co-innovation is the key to better solutions: professionals across different fields working together is the only way to create something genuinely new. People need to jump out of their silos and complement each other’s expertise, designers taking into account the perspectives of engineers and the customer’s customers bringing in valuable market insight.
To push forward with our innovativeness, we just need to be brave enough to ask stupid questions. Thinking the unthinkable and testing out the ideas that might seem impossible at first glance is the only way to stay in the frontline. Of course, there’s a risk that it won’t work – but what if it does?
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Throughout its history Tieto has been an integral part of building the Nordic societies. Tieto has created some of the very first digital services and paved the way for a smoother, healthier and more equal future. Check out the interactive timeline of Tieto's history and the development of the IT-sector >>>
You can also tune in to the Tieto Live – #tieto50 special edition which will be broadcasted on May 25th, 10:30 – 11:30 EET. Join us online and hear thoughts from Kimmo Alkio, CEO of Tieto, Matti Lehti, CEO of Tieto 1989–2008 and Ishtar Touailat, head of Innovation & Incubation Sweden.