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Trade union calls on Helsinki to consult own employees over payroll changes

Amidst issues implementing a new payroll system, a union chair called out the hypocrisy of the city spending millions of euros on outside consulting fees while ignoring the recommendations of its own workers.

Trade union Jyty called on the city of Helsinki to consult its own employees over changes. Helsinki City Hall File Photo. Image: Tiina Jutila / Yle

The trade union Federation of Public and Private Sector Employees (Jyty) demanded that the city of Helsinki start consulting its own professionals in reforming the salary payment system.

The payroll errors stem from the city of Helsinki adopting an automated payroll system from the tech firm Sarastia. Employees of the city have seen their pay withheld or altered as a result of the system glitches.

"The city of Helsinki throws millions of euros to Deloitte, from which, according to press reports, more than two million euros in services has been purchased with subsidies since March. At the same time, however, Helsinki is repeating a mistake it has already made by continuing to ignore the views of its professionals — the staff whose salaries are being withheld — on how the changeover process should be carried out. This is baffling," Jyty chair Jonna Voima said in a union press release.

The city of Helsinki implemented the new system at the beginning of April and payroll issues have persisted for months.

According to Voima, payroll professionals employed by the city of Helsinki warned about the adoption of the news system prior to its adoption, saying that the change would require considerable additional resources.

"The blatant situation created by Helsinki itself shows that employers are still not capable of involving their professional staff in the planning, preparation and implementation of changes," Voima added.

Jyty is a member union of the Finnish Confederation of Professionals (STTK) representing, among others, payroll secretaries and other financial service staff.

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