How to activate the members of city organisations to communicate about their circular economy actions? How to stay on track with the projects?
The City of Helsinki developed a digital platform for organising and managing their climate action plan in 2019. This grew into a software-as-a-service product called Kausal Watch, which is now used in several cities in Finland.
Helsinki soon realised that the platform is useful also in other areas such as circular economy and active mobility. Thus, they launched Kausal Watch platforms also for these action plans with a purpose to activate civil servants and support their work. How did the platform help?
How to organise all this and get all parties informed?
Clear reporting responsibilities. Clear deadlines. Automatic reminders. Short reporting periods.
Kausal Watch has a separate view for each action and the related content. Contact person or persons are displayed with their contact details. Objectives of the action are described, as well as a list of more detailed tasks to meet the targets. Actions also have quantitative indicators measuring their success.
The platform brings clarity to the content of the work. But it does more: it automatically checks that each responsible organisation has nominated contact persons for their actions and that the person regularly updates information about the progress of the action. It also sends email notifications about approaching task deadlines. Everyone knows what is expected of them.
The platform is open within the city administration but also to all citizens. So it is easy to follow whether tasks are completed or not and whether the indicators meet their targets.
“Kausal Watch is an effective tool for me to coordinate circular economy work within the city,” says environmental inspector Leona Silberstein. “It puts pressure on the contact persons to perform well and on time. I would welcome even more feedback from citizens.”
She adds that it took time to design actions and tasks, and find contact persons for all actions.
“But it was time well spent, because Kausal Watch helped us to focus on things that are necessary for the action plan rather than administrative details.”
When the setup is done, the platform saves the programme coordinator's time.
Leona is happy that Kausal Watch helps her to keep track of the large action plan and to know at least something about everything. An especially useful feature is the dashboard that gives an overview of all actions and their statuses.