Digitalising Everything

On August 18th I had the pleasure to participate in Aalto University’s annual Make it Digital! event. Having visited the event already last year I greatly enjoyed both the event’s and the university’s focus on the Internet of Things – its impact on transforming business models, enhancing customer centricity, and the application of service design were the themes which I was looking forward to this year. Aalto has clearly understood that digitalisation is the way forward, with more than 100 professors being involved in the subject and ICT in general, and good ties that bring students and researchers together with relevent businesses.

“The technology is ready…are we? We have no choice, we have to take control.”

This year’s keynote presentation by Dr. Martin Curly, Professor and Former Director of Intel Labs Europe, provided an overview of what it means to make everything digital. He shed light on three colliding key mega trends the world is seeing right now: Digital transformation, mass collaboration, and sustainability. He emphasized that industries which were established and shaped during over a century are now going to be re-architected in just under one decade by these trends and the new business models they make possible.


Looking at digital transformation, powered by the Internet of Things (IoT), businesses switch from manufacturing and selling products to offering intelligent services to their customers. The IoT further means that products are not just physical objects anymore. They also have a digital side which is actually much more important than the mere physical object. The digital counterpart, enabled by IoT platforms, collects, stores, analyses and controls all kinds of information coming from the object, its environment and how it is being used by its owner. This technological leap enables mass collaboration: people to people, people to machines, machines to people, and machines to machines. It brings a major change in our interaction with everyone and everything.

In addition, making everything digital will increase sustainability. A manufacturer will know exactly how much resources is needed to fulfil the detailed customer demand, without overproducing. 3D printing will further enable customers to print their own objects with just the right amount of required resources – the digital manufacturer’s role will be to provide customers with ever-evolving digital recipes and 3D printer support, while raw materials are recycled as locally as possible.

The future: a cognitive business = a digital business + digital intelligence

Juha Teljo, Analytics tools executive Europe at IBM, went on to talk about the current stage of cognitive computing, or digital intelligence. Cognitive computing capabilities resemble the human learning and thinking processes. Understanding, reasoning, learning and interacting are the core elements. Interacting, as Dr. Curly also emphasized, is one of the key things machines (Things) should learn in order to engage with their users.

Right now, humans initiate the conversation with a computer. In the near future, computers will be able to start the conversation based on their own observations. There are already promising results in computers’ capabilities to make decisions – a capability with significant potential. Things, through IoT Platforms, don’t just know what’s going on but they can decide themselves what to do about it – currently this computing development is at the stage of “decision adviser”, in the future it should be “decision maker”. The result will be services that understand, reason and learn.

How do we differentiate businesses today in our digital world? 

The event overall highlighted that digitalization is happening and it transforms businesses in any industry. There are no limits to our imagination anymore and service innovation can happen just about anywhere as the enabling technology already exists and is ready to be utilized. It also powers new levels of customer centricity, mass customization and service interactions.


Even in the film industry, customer centricity can be increased through crowdsourcing as Timo Vuorensola showcased: Every bit of a filmmaking process is a task that can be collaboratively accomplished together with your audience.

– C. Maiwald, SID14 student

Growing a community

One of the things I’ve always loved about Service Design is that it’s not just a profession, it’s a community. Across the globe one can find a network of self-starters promoting Service Design and Design Thinking in all of its human-centered glory. These are the people planning Global Service Jams, conferences, Service Design Network chapters and creative cooperatives. And, these plans are usually just the beginning, mere tools forged by modern-day pioneers to ignite the fire of a new way thinking and a new way of doing.

2016 ushered in a new year of opportunity for service design. Now, in this sixth month as we gear up for summer holidays is a great time to reflect on what we’ve accomplished and look forward to rest of the year to come.

In February, four SID Laurea students representing Spain, Germany, Hungary and America made waves on the Island of Ibiza, Spain by hosting its first ever Global Service Jam. Before the event, 85% of attendees had never worked directly with design thinking and nearly half of those had not even heard of it. After the event, a small but tight-knit community began to form on the island and has begun to meet regularly; a Jam sponsor and attendee is applying Design Thinking to develop a new service for her business; and a consulting team is adapting it’s working style, inspired by the collaborative and Design Thinking based Jam environment.

Since 2014 a small group of design thinkers in Tampere, Finland began meeting over lunch. There wasn’t an official group for Service Designers in the city, we thought there should be! That spark ignited and grew during a series of Service Design Meetups in January, March and May into an SDN Finland – Tampere City Team. The team will pick back up after the holiday season in Finland, sure to welcome new topics, case studies and connections.

Where have you seen our humble community grow in the first half of 2016? And, maybe more importantly, where will you help it grow?

Ann Padley
Service Innovation and Design MBA Student

Well-being services at Summerschool

I spent two inspiring weeks in Professional Summerschool. I can only adore the prework of the organizers – there were so many interesting truelife projects available for students to design and innovate. And – as we saw in the pitching session of the last day – all the groups had created great service concepts just in two weeks!

My team was working with project Kertomalla paranee. The target is to create solutions that help cancer patients and their families to live their ilves with best possible quality dispite of a serious disease. The patients recover better when we can reduce their stress level. The close ones can better support the patient when they can get the appropriate information and help in everyday tasks.

The first phase of the process is to observe. Get the insights of the users and stakeholders. We were so lucky to get a huge amount of insights provided through the web-page. In addition to analyzing that data we interviewed Anne Palin from Novartis to get more information about the project’s drivers and targets. We also interviewed a nurse and a doctor at HUS and got basic understanding of this solution’s strategic position and their expectations for the project. After those interviews it was clear that the solution has management’s support and some investors already in place.

The most touching interview was with Tiina Valtonen from breastcancer network She is also a recovering breastcancer patient and she told us the naked trueth about the disease and surviving with it. Strugling with “simple” everyday tasks, without proper and sufficient information and looking brave for their close ones. Feeling unsafe, alone and scared inside. It was clear that this is what we want to change. Our team was determined that digitalisation can provide elements to solve at least some of these issues.

Next phase of the process is the ideation. So we started brainstorming. Two key themes raised from the ideas: matchmaking and personalized data. Matchmaking for patients with others in the same situation, with the ones who can provide help in simple everyday tasks and with the ones who can provide tailored services. Matchmaking for the close ones with others in the same situation. Matchmaking for close ones and volunteers with the ones to whom they can provide help in simple everyday task. Personalized health and treatment data for patients – and to their close ones if the patient permits. A channel for patients to record questions and provide frequent data of their feelings and self-measurements to professionals between appointmens.

We ended up with a concept where the patient has full control of data and his/her connections. It provides a unique and easy way of asking and providing help, a social media platform for communities to connect, discuss and share, data analysis platform for matcmaking and personalized data. It also has a simple channel to record health related data that is provided to professionals.


At the end we created a prototype of the key features and tested it with breastcancer patients community The concept was presented to’s cabinet and they just can’t wait to have it availble as soon as possible. In the he final pitching it was clear that this solution is needed but it will be provided as a add-on service.

The summerschool is over, but we hope that we can still be further developing the concept and providing solutions to help cancer patients’ everydaylife.


Two weeks at professional summer school

Elisa project about MyData

We all are from different Universities of Applied Sciences: Laurea, Metropolia and Haaga-Helia. There are four nationalities represented in our global team of five people. This is a good basis for diversity. Two of us are doing master´s studies and the rest are doing BBA`s. We are IT, Media Engineering and Business Administration oriented students.

pro school 1

Meet our team

Elisa requested us to create an ecosystem for MyData with consents from end-users. Elisa would be the MyData operator and sell the services to cities. Citizen would be the end users of MyData in many interacted ways.

First we started getting familiar with Hameenlinna Healthcare case. We understood the meaning for Elisa, the city of Hämeenlinna and the citizen. The Hämeenlinna case is digitalised healtcare system that is cost efficient for city and easy for the citizen to use.

Then we moved to creating a timeline of Finnish neuvola process with all the check ups and included Kela, and Tax office to the process. When we had a clear understanding of neuvola process, we made questions that came to our mind when thinking about the user group – mothers and also the healthcare professionals. We also wanted to interview the neuvola professionals, but due to summer holidays, we were unable to reach them on time.


We really learned how to open a packet of post-it notes… lots of them🙂

As a field study we went to Angry Bird park to interview mothers and to understand their needs as market research. We also made a questionnaire to internet and posted it to portal. We made altogether 7 interviews and got 6 replies in the questionnaire. They we could understand really the painpoints of mothers. There´s definitely need for digitalised neuvola card and a need for interfaces to share and see data of pregnancy.

Then we created user stories, how Elisa is related to Neuvola. As the final job for the first week, we made 3 posters of concepts and presented the concepts for healthcare professionals. Our ecosystem is so complex and we got very negative feedback. It was impossible to clear our concept to anyone in 2 minutes. This really woke us up. Do we understand it clear enough ourselves?

Then it was time to draw the ecosystem. Then the guys made a user case of neuvola and what is happening in systems. How data is flowing between the systems and which parties were included. Some of us found it complex to understand. What to do then, when you don´t quite get the point of it? Well… the fun part began. We played the ecosystem. We divided the roles between us. Somehow after playing we all felt little more secure and had so much fun as you can see in the pictures.


Then we started prototyping. We created UI for doctors point of view and the moved to end users. We also combined Elisa´s Älymittaus products to our ecosystem. I learned during the prototyping that use familiar tools, don´t try to learn a new one, when you are in hurry. There are great tools, but if you don´t know how to use them, it´s perfectly ok to use eg. power point.

omaneuvola ecosystem

OmaNeuvola ecosystem

When we were ready with prototypes, it was time to prepare for final pitch. With 5 minutes time allowed only. So we need to explain complex ecosystem in a simplified way. We used the user case cartoons and UI images to explain what omaNeuvola was all about and how information would flow in the systems. It´s easy for the mothers. And no more looking for the lost neuvola card. We digitalised it. and created a fantastic story out of an ecosystem.

Have a look at out pitch.

And you know what… we won the competition with our idea. And got as an award half year of mentoring. It was a great two week and our group really grew together. It was fun and we learned a lot.

pro school

My Service Design day 19.5.2016

CASE OP / 9.15 am – 10.45amNäyttökuva 2016-05-21 kohteessa 12.12.05

Thursday 19th of May I participated OP Bank´s service design 90 minutes seminar at Radisson Blu Hotel in Kamppi. Harri Nieminen introduced us the world of OP and their new strategy behind OP´s customer service. OP has almost 180 banks all over the Finland. They also offer services for their customers from insurance and health care section. One of the most important competitive actors in customer service 2016  is customer experience. For this reason you must know your customers very well. Today´s challenge is not only customer´s service experiences but also technology. Digital world offers and creates new competition worldwide. People are asking service in different ways than before.

Näyttökuva 2016-05-21 kohteessa 11.28.28

Channel experience © harrimatias #OPmuotoilu


To get there what people are waiting for, OP works together with several designers and listens carefully their own customers. Empathy is cornerstone. At OP their want to create services that are meaningful and loveable, they want to solve existing problems together with their customers. For this as a method OP use OP Design Sprint. Design Sprint is 3 days hands on working together with customers: day1 is learning, day 2 is creating, and day 3 is testing.

Harri Nieminen says: ”If we don’t understand and validate needs of our customers, we concentrate easily for wrong details” “Designer is a trustee of client”.

For me message of this seminar was clear and loud – OP Service design is making things visible and understandable, doing in practise in OP world.

CASE DesignersDay2016 / 2pm-6pm

At the same day I participated for DesignersDay 2016 at Apollo Club, Helsinki, organized by Kesko. Idea behind this day was networking with different type of designers. This evening I was privileged to listen lectures from Dutch designer Gunther Bauer and Finnish Service Design expert Juha Tuulaniemi.

Mr Bauer talked about his own company “Pimp my shop”.

His motto “Learn by doing” has brought him in to retail designing. Through Amsterdam based company Finishing Dutch retail design he has worked together for example big cosmetic and beauty shop Etos in NL. In his example during the lecture I found it fascinating how he added music in his slides while telling us about his project; music to attract our senses! Just like you should do when designing services to people; To get their attention you have to catch the people. Mr Bauer used music to catch up our attention! “You must attract! You have to communicate! You have to be there! Customer wants value and you must answer their needs!” – this was bottom line from Gunther Bauer underlined with Ikea commercial.

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Global Service Jam Helsinki 2016 – Emotional roller coaster

On Friday, when I arrived to Laurea Leppävaara campus, my first thought was “What I’m doing here?!, Am I crazy to spend whole weekend here?, What if I end up as a part of terrible group?, Am I smart enough?”. This feeling grew stronger when we were in an auditorium and I should have been creative and invent a brilliant problem which is related to THE sound. My mind was blank, I mean really blank. Everyone else were writing something on the paper but not me. “Oh my god, what should I write?” THE sound sounded just a splash and now I should write some awesome idea. Nothing, nothing came to my mind. I just wrote something. Fortunately we didn’t sign the papers so no one could know which was mine.

We gave scores for the problems which were invented and 7 best scored problems were chosen. I met my group: three other women and two men. First thought was that they are nice and this could work. Maybe this was a good idea to participate to the Jam. My first appearance was right, no not right because they were more than nice, they were awesome! They had great sense of humor and co-operation was seamless, we were at the same wavelength. We laughed a lot but we also were hard working and we had the same goal -> new experiences, networking and fun.


The whole weekend was all of that! Well on Sunday, when our group coolW, presented our work, we ended up at the bottom of the wave. What happened? Let’s say it this way: It seemed that no one understood (especially two judges out of three) our presentation and the product which we had created. The third one, fortunately, praised the product and presentation. But, at least I, felt like poleaxed: “Were we really that bad?” Judges went to the hall, after all presentations were presented, to discuss which group should win. We were still disappointed and astonished what happened and why it did happen. We had a great time so that’s the main point, but it would have been nice to win. Well, not this time.

The judges came back and after few minutes they said: “The winner is group number 5”. I almost said out loud that now they are in error but luckily I didn’t have the time to say anything. “The winner is group coolW!”

“WHAT?!” and then we looked at each other with round-eyed expressions on our faces and burst into laugh. Now we were really astonished, but this time in a good way. We won because we had created great service and a product which also paid attention to environment and human health. The weekend was great and worth of experience (also without winning)!


How to make drinking water cool

I’ve always liked challenges and when I learnt that Laurea Leppävaara will be hosting the Global Service Jam in February 2016 I decided to take part. So far, I’ve been pretty much a novice in service design, but I like the idea of “learning by doing”, which is a key element of service design and the motto of Laurea. The 48-hour workshop started with an interesting lecture about empathy and how it can be efficiently used in service design. After the lecture we were tense and unsure what the future (evening) holds. The only thing we knew was that within the next few minutes the global Jam theme would be pronounced. The minutes were long and I felt like time just slows down. My heart rate increased by the minute, I was so excited! When the theme was finally released I guess I was not the only one who was totally flabbergasted. They announced the theme in a form of sound that sounded like something had just dropped into water. After that, we (jammers) were instructed to write down one problem which first comes to our mind around this theme. The best ideas were selected by scoring them. Every jammer then chose the most interesting idea out of them and teams were built.

team coolWater

The main problem of our team concerned how to reduce the usage of water bottles (plastic bottles). At the same time we wanted the user look cool when using the bottle. While brainstorming, ideas were eagerly exchanged, laugh could not be avoided and it was funny to note that most of the team members carried plastic water bottles with them. Eventually, we came up with an idea to create an intelligent, cool looking reusable water bottle, coolWater, which can be filled up at coolWater refill stations. We did not want to concentrate only on the appearance but also on the material. The bottle needs to be durable, ecological and easy to carry.  This led us to consider a brand new smart, carbon fibre bottle. We also thought about today´s technology. The coolWater bottle has a sensor which is connected to the user´s smartphone. It provides current data, for example the amount of bacteria inside the bottle and alerts when the bottle needs to be washed. From the health perspective, when the user grabbs the bottle it measures his/her level of hydration and sends the information to the user´s coolWater app.


Finally, last but not least, the bottle label can be personalized. The users can download their own photos into the label which is made of electronic paper. Besides the intelligent bottle, we wanted to create a user-friendly app. By using the coolWater app the user can easily order the bottle with the features he/she likes and the navigation system helps finding the nearest coolWater refill station which can be found on airports, shopping centers, gyms, schools, etc. Therefore, the users are not forced to refill their water bottles in the public restrooms anymore.

In order to understand the need for this kind of intelligent water bottle, we conducted a consumer survey at shopping center Sello. We got a lot of good feedback and most of the participants told us they would buy the bottle if made available. The participants felt that the most important features of the bottle were cleanliness, easy washing and a personalized layout.

As we know, 48 hours is a very short time to create a totally new service design but we made it! We were able to draft business model canvas for coolWater, create personas according to consumer research and make a video which presented the prototype.


Our team had a lot of talent for which I am truly thankful. But we were not the only ones. 48 hours of work culminated in great presentations which all had something unique and innovative for the listeners.

Now, few weeks later I am still smiling.🙂 It was just phenomenal to work with people you did not know before and build the best group spirit ever. Thank you to my teammates Karolina, Laura, Hanna, Mika, and Jouni for making this possible. I would also like to thank our mentors whose support was supervaluable. Last but not least, a warm thank you to the organizers of this event, you made it memorable. All the information I gathered about service design within these 48 hours is now in use in my daily work. I can easily say this was one the best experiences in my life and I want to say to anyone who has the opportunity to take part in the jams in the future, go for it!