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How we make decisions

I made the decision to get us communications training from a great local trainer. Even though I was convinced he would be good for us, it was 8 months before I actually made the investment.

It is roughly 30000€ in direct expenses alone, and lots of work time. I was greatly helped by one of our sites that was doing a single session on their own, using the same pattern which was highly liked. This helped build internal interest and confidence to invest into the larger set.

On one hand, I think that it took a lot of work to finalise the decision that I had already decided on a year ago, but on the other hand, it was a big investment and it was worth making sure it's what people want.

On the air

It was 2012 when we decided to create the radio station, FutuRadio. We managed to easily get a short-length frequency permit for three weeks in the summer. We hired a person who knew the industry well, and we had people creating their own shows. There were one hour slots where someone would play music or would have talking shows and stuff like that. It was very nice.

It was a real radio station which was also broadcasted on the internet. Of course, we didn’t have content for 24 hours, but we repeated some stuff at nights. People would prepare music playlists.

It makes me laugh that my girlfriend works on the radio and she complains that she has actually heard me on the radio more than herself.

Ice cream in summer

Last summer there were not so many people here. We had breakfast once a week, but it wasn’t very smart to have it during the summer time as we didn’t know how many people there were. Of course, it wasn’t nice for summer employees to come to the office and get “Sorry there’s no breakfast during the summer”.

So we thought about how we could make a better summer for them and decided to order an ice cream cart from Valio. Once a week, ice cream should come to the office with some strawberries and horns.

We actually brought the summer inside. Ice creams were available till autumn. People felt that they were cared for, and that we wanted to make their summer nice even when they had to work with the sun shining outside.

The story of Chilicorn

Last winter we started sponsoring open-source contributions of employees. If you do open-source work in your free time, you get compensated by the company because people learn a lot. It’s like investing into the people. We wanted to have a mascot for the program, called Spice. Teemu Turunen, the leader of the program came up with Chilicorn, a unicorn with a chili as a horn.

He asked for a logo from me but I didn’t have the time. He basically drew one in MS Paint, and after publishing it, people went crazy and made mugs. I told him “Maybe it could be prettier”. It forced me to draw a logo for the program. I did this and people started taking it to heart.

Now it’s more than just an open-source program logo. It’s everything we do for the society. For example, we teach kids to code or we have a course for Arabic people who want to learn Finnish. All social responsibility stuff goes under this logo. I’m really proud of it.

FutuRadio

It was 2012 when we decided to create the radio station, FutuRadio. We managed to easily get a short-length frequency permit for three weeks in the summer. We hired a person who knew the industry well, and we had people creating their own shows. There were one hour slots where someone would play music or would have talking shows and stuff like that. It was very nice.

It was a real radio station which was also broadcasted on the internet. Of course, we didn’t have content for 24 hours, but we repeated some stuff at nights. People would prepare music playlists.

It makes me laugh that my girlfriend works on the radio and she complains that she has actually heard me on the radio more than herself.

Story from
Petri Heiramo
Organisational ScrumMaster
Story from
Jon Krogell
Developer
Story from
Katja Lehikoinen
Specialist in Administrative Services
Story from
Pekka Pulli
Former designer
Story from
Jon Krogell
Developer
View from outside
Story from
Sergey Kotlov
Entrepreneur
FutuFriday

I was lucky to take part in FutuFriday. It’s a day reserved for learning, communication and exchange of ideas. That time their CEO Tuomas Syrjänen gave a talk. He shared what he had observed on their internal communication channels, how it reflected his understanding of company values and what he learned from it. He openly spoke about how his behavior hadn’t been aligned with their values and how he was going to change it.

During that sincere and informal speech one thought kept coming to my mind, Lead by example. When a leader of an organisation communicates this way it motivates everyone to behave in a similar transparent manner. For Futurice words trust and transparency are not something they wrote down, put on a wall and forgot. The company actually lives by these values.

Our initiatives

Koodikoulu — code school for kids

Koodikoulu started as a private project by Juha Paananen, an employee at Reaktor, and became popular very fast.

The first public school was held in 2014, and all seats for the first course were reserved in under an hour. Since then children’s coding clubs have been opened in Tampere, Helsinki and Espoo regions.

We organised our first internal event in the middle of February, 2014, and have been running them regularly since then.

LOOK...

This is what children's coding school looks like!

Spice program
Spice is a company sponsored open source and social impact program. Our goal is to make Futurice a better company and the world a better place.
Being a company, our motivation, if sincere, is of course not entirely altruistic. We believe that taking the free software movement seriously will help us in recruiting more like-minded people and to keep our own motivated. It could take us towards knowing some of the tools we use more by heart. That would increase efficiency. Hell, we might even get some recognition out of this, if it flies. But most of all, it is the right thing to do and will help us make the world a better place.
Teemu Turunen
Program Lead

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We live
by values

At least four people will take care of your professional development and growth.

We compensate (if you want) your participation in open source projects.

You will get a company credit card so you can spend money on anything you find appropriate for clients, the company, and yourself.

We will be glad to help you with any initiative, from archery classes to a rock concert on a beach.  

You could easily change a project if you find that it does not align with your goals.

We share a lot of information with you about the company’s life, including financial data.

Our rituals

FutuFriday

The first Friday of each month is a FutuFriday. We come to Futurice offices from customer locations to spend a day with each other. This day is reserved for learning, collaboration and fun. It starts as any good beginning should start — with food.

There are many activities to help things happen. For example, new employees introduce themselves. Some people run sessions, mostly technology, or design-oriented. Our CEO, Tuomas Syrjänen, answers questions which he receives via email or on the spot. Of course, the questions could be about anything.

We start a video conference to connect people from all of our offices, and sometimes we see more than we could expect.

FutuBileet

FutuBileet is our yearly “home party”, which takes place in October. The party is open for friends, family members, clients and everyone else whom Futuriceans find it is important to invite.

Supported by live music from invited and internal musicians and DJs, an enormous amount of beer and food, along with an awesome company, we party until the middle of the night.

Code Camps

From time to time, hackers from all our sites go to deep woods or a secluded island and spend a couple of days and nights developing something new and crazy. Each code camp has a certain theme to simplify knowledge sharing. The first one was about building web applications. The focus of the last one was on robotics and AI.

We split into teams and try to create something that works with a language or a framework we have never seen before. The camp is about learning and making connections. Its days are filled with activities, traditional for software developers — morning exercises, combat trainings, ball games, and not so traditional like coding and drinking beer.

Annankatu 34 B, 8th floor
Schützenstraße 6, Berlin
26 Underwood Street, N1 7JQ London

+358 400 885 345 +49 30 2556 3743 +44 773 3194 815
futurice.com

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