Ease of use enables the development of risk management

The Federation of Evangelical Lutheran Parishes in Tampere comprises five independent Evangelical-Lutheran parishes in the Tampere region, with operations cutting across a surprisingly wide range of sectors. The five parishes in Tampere are functionally independent units, each of which is governed by a vicar together with a parish council elected by a general election every four years.

The Federation of Parishes takes care of all the finances of the parishes, HR management, the joint administration of the federation, properties, graveyards, parish registers, communications and information management. The parishes also have common activities: family counselling, pastoral counselling at hospitals, diaconal and youth work, student chaplaincy, early childhood education and social work. Organizing such a wide range of activities is not possible without the appropriate tools. That is why knowledge-based management issues related to risk management have been part of the activities of the Federation of Evangelical Lutheran Parishes in Tampere for a long time.

When the need to take a step in a more modern direction and promote the growth of a risk-aware operating culture was identified, Granite’s risk management tool was chosen as the tool for it.

We chose Granite because of its ease of use and, in particular, easy deployment.
Sami Kallioinen, Director of Communications, Federation of Evangelical Lutheran Parishes in Tampere

Risk management was not a new thing at the Federation of Parishes before Granite. The federation had been identifying the risks involved in operations and taking measures to correct them to the best of its ability and understanding, but without an appropriate risk management tool, this effort would not have been successful in the long run. In particular, keeping the situational picture of risks up to date and maintaining risk awareness required more than Excel, even though it is a great tool.

For effective, decentralised risk management, however, it is totally inadequate. In an ever-changing world, organisations cannot afford to bury information that is important for the management of work on a hard drive.

The introduction of the new risk management tool also supported organisation-wide development work. In the parishes of Tampere, risk management is decentralised. Each unit is responsible for risk work in its own area, in accordance with the organisation’s common guidelines. An agile and easy-to-use risk management tool is, therefore, a key factor in achieving the goals set for the operations.

With Granite, we have a comprehensive and accurate understanding of our risk situation.
Timo Takala, Director of Development, Federation of Evangelical Lutheran Parishes in Tampere

In risk management, as in all other areas of development work, it is important to remember that tools are only part of a bigger picture. No information system solution or cloud service can change deep-rooted attitudes. Therefore, it is very important that the tools that enable the development of risk management are so user-friendly and easy to adopt that the deployment process does not become an extra bump in the road towards a risk-aware operating culture. In this regard, Granite’s features met the needs of the parishes in Tampere extremely well.

Not all risks are equal. Without an appropriate risk management tool, the evaluation of risks would not be sufficiently consistent and systematic. Carrying out development work and allocating resources where they are most needed requires that the risks are identified and recognised in their proper proportions.

The broad field of operations is full of all kinds of risks, and it may be difficult to get an accurate picture of their importance to the whole only by relying on one’s gut feeling. Without the right tool to ensure an up-to-date picture of the risk situation, it may be difficult to identify the relevant risks when it is crucial. The visuality of Granite’s reports is an absolute cornerstone in the achievement of this goal. Making risk management transparent is at the core of risk management in the parishes of Tampere, the purpose of which is to ensure that everyone involved in it can feel that their contribution matters. Thanks to this approach, the level of risk awareness has increased and the personnel have developed a better understanding of the importance of risk management.

The visuality of Granite’s risk reports helps put the risks of operations in the right proportion so that they can also be addressed with the level of attention they require. Of course, openness and transparency require trust, but when risk management is based on mutually agreed principles, which are also followed, it supports learning from each other and helping others in more challenging risk management situations.

Granite makes the goals of risk management comprehensible and brings them to a practical level.
Sami Kallioinen, Director of Communications, Federation of Evangelical Lutheran Parishes in Tampere

However, identifying risks and being aware of the situation is not enough if the organisation also wants to improve the situation. All development work is based on building a culture, which an easy-to-use risk management tool such as Granite supports. Incorporating risk management into everyday work is not always easy, but it is possible to make progress in small steps.

The parishes of Tampere use Granite extensively, which supports the goals of the organisation. Risk mapping and identification should not be a solemn activity that is performed a few times a year just for reporting purposes. At the management group level, the development of the risk situation should be monitored at least on a monthly basis in order to stay on top of the situation. To this end, Granite is an excellent tool. An appropriate and easy-to-use risk management tool is essential for changing the working culture. With the introduction of Granite, efforts have been made to involve all employees of the Federation of Parishes in risk management work. This is not an easy goal to achieve as it requires that the employees understand that risk management also protects them and is not something that is imposed from the outside.

Effective risk management requires that risks are recognised as part of the work, even though they can never be completely eliminated. It is equally important to understand that by conducting guided and systematic risk management work, risks can be appropriately and proactively addressed. Awareness of the risks should not lead to a situation in which people are paralysed in the face of them and unable to take action. Granite’s risk management tool supports this development with its automated features.

Without Granite, knowledge-based management wouldn’t be possible.

Timo Takala, Director of Development, Federation of Evangelical Lutheran Parishes in Tampere

More effective identification of the risks involved in operations and the development of the sensitivity of risk identification lay a good foundation for further development. The solutions offered by Granite for risk management have brought a systematic approach to risk management in the parishes in Tampere. The risk management tool, in which responsibility for each corrective measure is assigned to a designated person, uses automatic reminders to ensure that risks are not left unaddressed. Again, this is a feature that risk registers compiled in spreadsheet software cannot offer. Automatic reminders appropriately increase the pressure to tackle identified and assessed risks in a timely manner.

Granite encourages us to pursue clarity and determination.

Sami Kallioinen, Director of Communications, Federation of Evangelical Lutheran Parishes in Tampere

Working with Granite has also supported the development of risk management in the parishes of Tampere in areas other than software. The needs to develop certain aspects of Granite’s risk management tools have been well taken into account and expert consultation has been offered, which has helped understand the internal risk management goals of the parishes in Tampere more accurately. Highly praised features include Granite’s effortless integration and Single Sign-On, which has made Granite a great fit for the Microsoft Teams teamwork tool used by the parishes of Tampere. This solution removed yet another stumbling block that would make risk management slightly less appealing in the eyes of the managers and experts involved in it.

Read more on how we have helped other customers from Public sector and see if we’re a right fit for you as well!