Improving location specific feedback with Retkikompassi

We started developing Retkikompassi to help Metsähallitus improve customer interaction with hikers and to gather location specific feedback. Metsähallitus is a state-owned enterprise that is responsible for developing the Finnish National Parks and various other nature areas.

The aim for Retkikompassi was to become a digital platform, that makes it easy to give feedback straight to Metsähallitus for example about the conditions of a lean-to or just to share your thoughts and discuss the trails with other users.

How did it all begin?

The feedback regarding your own organization is nowadays scattered across multiple social media sites, emails, feedback forms and random chatter. We have come a long way from the times, when a red mailbox was all you needed to know what your customers think. This is the reason why it’s getting even more important to be present in all the right medias, but to also offer new means for conversation. When the organization itself offers a platform for conversation, it becomes much easier to be actively involved and make the necessary changes based on the feedback.

What is the right way to obtain the right services?

We got involved in the pilot project as a result of an innovation challenge held by Metsähallitus. The customer valued our knowledge about combining geographical information, technology and design. The work began in June 2019 and as the result of continuous design, dialogue and development, we built a service that allows users to share feedback and target it on the locations and structures in the geographical information systems of Metsähallitus.

The procurement process allowed us to use our expertise in crafting a practical solution, that proved the usefulness and benefits of the final service. Retkikompassi has been continuously planned, developed and its functionality has been tested according to the guidelines of the process.

Where are we now?

We published the latest version on May 8th 2020 and it now covers also the Nuuksio and UKK National Parks in addition to the previously added hiking areas of Evo and Ruunaa. We made radical changes to the interface to make the conversation easier and promote the visibility of user-generated content. The appearance was also updated to better represent the new, soon to be released visual identity of Metsähallitus.

During the spring users have shared their photographs, reported maintenance needs and asked questions about the local services. The employees of Metsähallitus have also been actively participating in the conversation and the service is being tied even more tightly into their daily workflow.

We feel that in the future map-based user participation and the acquired data has huge potential to steer the development of nature areas, cities and businesses in the right direction.