Agile methods help Finland’s Social Insurance Institution achieve common goals

Gofore helped Kela’s IT Benefit Unit to implement agile methods, which made workdays more fluid and brought a new level of quality into decision-making.

Kela, the Social Insurance Institution of Finland, runs the Finnish social security system and grants benefits to citizens in different situations. With approximately 8,000 experts, the organization introduced an agile working model in 2019.

Achieving a fluid workflow through agile methods

Teams working with Kela’s benefit systems wanted to enhance their agile model. Although three-month planning periods and sprint cycles were already implemented, the practical methods and benefits of the agile framework remained a mystery for many employees. Teams had difficulties understanding what they were supposed to do and why.

– Our goal was to enable a smoother workflow and refine period planning for our teams. We wanted to gain a better understanding of incoming jobs and minimize the amount of ad hoc work requests, says Helena Lääperi, Kela’s Head of IT Benefits Unit.

Kela also wanted to unify ways of working, identify inter-team dependencies, increase transparency, and produce comparable data to enhance decision-making by advancing their agile model.

Unified ways of working are rooted in basics

Gofore’s Agile Coaches worked in close collaboration with Kela to produce a roadmap for developing the agile model. The year-long project started from the basics.

– We noticed that there were different interpretations of Kela’s period planning between teams. Our team unified the agile workflow by defining shared methods, roles, and responsibilities. We also utilized Confluence and Jira to collect data for enhanced decision-making, says Gofore’s Agile Coach Emilia Majuri.

The changes were first piloted among a smaller test group. Iteration rounds produced best practices, after which the unified period planning model was introduced to the entire Benefits Unit.

– Planning was another key area of development in the project. By improving our anticipatory planning, we are now able to get straight to concrete decisions in our planning days. Every team member knows the targets and actions of the upcoming three-month planning period, highlights Helena Lääperi.

Improved everyday work-life and decision-making

Unified methods have yielded desired results by generating transparency and more accurate information on what teams are working on – and what they should be working on. Collaboration towards shared goals is now more prevalent.

Kela’s teams have enjoyed a more fluid workflow, clearer goals, and a more manageable work queue. Management now has access to higher-quality data that helps make better decisions on work prioritization and planning.

Helena Lääperi feels that the new and improved work methods have truly been adopted into everyday work at Kela. She gives kudos to Gofore’s Agile Coaches for their hands-on approach.

– The Gofore crew is truly a joy to work with. They really considered the needs of our teams and offered tailor-made solutions that generated tangible results, says Lääperi.

Project highlights


The IT Benefits Unit at Kela aimed to introduce more fluidity and predictability into their daily work while also enhancing transparency and decision-making through the use of agile methods.


Gofore’s Agile Coaches helped Kela’s teams internalize and implement the fundamentals of agile methodology. Through their guidance, teams were able to establish shared working methods, clarify roles and responsibilities, and develop a deeper understanding of the agile approach.


The employees of Kela’s IT Benefits Unit now enjoy a more streamlined workflow, with clearer objectives and more efficient job queue management. Meanwhile, administrators have access to higher-quality data, allowing for more informed decision-making.

The Gofore crew is truly a joy to work with. They really considered the needs of our teams and offered tailor-made solutions that generated tangible results.

Helena Lääperi, Head of IT Benefits Unit, KELA

Case in numbers

  • 40 teams with improved agile competence
  • 4 planning days per year
  • 3 Gofore’s Agile Coaches involved in the project


The skills & competences utilised in the project

  • Agile coaching
  • Defining work methods, roles and responsibilities
  • Creating a period planning model

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