Finland’s largest earnings-related pension insurance company handles the pension cover of nearly 1.1 million people

Ilmarinen Mutual Pension Insurance Company is a private earnings-related pension insurance company established in 1961. Owned by its customers, Ilmarinen is Finland’s largest earnings-related pension insurance company and is annually responsible for the pension cover of nearly 1.1 million Finns. A staff of close to 600 handles the insurance matters of nearly 550,000 employees and over 75,000 entrepreneurs.

Aiming at agile operations and a low hierarchy

The cooperation initiated between Ilmarinen and Nitor aimed at creating an agile, customer-oriented operating model. For Ilmarinen, agility means that decisions on new matters and measures can be made quickly, easily, and transparently. In other words, those with the most experience of the task at hand also get to make the decisions. This change in approach required management to boldly dismantle old structures and give up some of its decision-making powers by lowering the hierarchy and delegating responsibility more widely to experts in different fields.

From silos to a transparent organisation

Ilmarinen’s business was clearly siloed, with employees distanced from one another and communication taking place through a hierarchy of supervisors. The different silos sought approval for their development projects from the management group in charge of development and funding. At times, approved projects were launched without a clear picture of the capacity actually available. This easily led to internal struggles for resources.