"Reforms need to be strongly supported by effective communication"

3 Cooperation in communications

3.1 Government’s joint strategic communications

Every government has the chance to implement at most a handful of wide-ranging reforms. Such major reforms will feature prominently in any public assessment of the Government's successes. Reforms can be extensive and therefore often very complex, and they need to be strongly supported by effective communication.

The process of communicating the Government’s major reforms will be as open as possible, where individuals and stakeholders can follow progress with the reforms and easily locate material produced.

Progress with reforms will also be reported in regular media events held by the Government and ministries, and on social media, in a clear and interesting manner. Government communications will make use of various interactive approaches in the major reforms, in an open-minded way.

3.1.1 Government’s joint communications model

The major reforms will be determined in more detail through the work of six ministerial working groups appointed by the Government. The reforms will make effective use of the Government’s joint strategic communications. The main tasks of the ministerial working groups are: employment promotion; climate and energy policy; health and social services reform; competence, education, culture and innovation; child and youth policy; and internal security and strengthening the rule of law.

The joint communications model for the major reforms will be managed and coordinated by the Government Communications Department, in accordance with its mandate. A key task of the Department is to create an overview of the Government's main objectives and of the progress in implementing them. The Government Communications Department, in cooperation with the communications units in other ministries, will plan and implement a common communications concept and visual image, along with guidelines and a material bank, for all of the Government’s major reforms. These will be used in communications in order to clarify the common message.

Communications on the major reforms will be carried out by the ministry responsible in the relevant ministerial working group. Ministerial working group meetings will be attended by representatives of the communications units in the particular ministries responsible. The ministerial working group will draw up a communications plan for the reform or reforms in question, and will ensure that the plan and the communications comply with the Government Communications Strategy.

Communications concerning the Government's major reforms will be agreed at regular meetings of the special advisers who are responsible for ministerial group communi-cations, and, where necessary, at meetings of these groups’ secretaries, i.e. principal advisers. The Director of Government Communications and/or the communications director of the ministry responsible will attend these meetings when they deal with relevant projects and project communications.

In addition to the Government Action Plan, there are other significant measures in the Government Programme whose implementation, monitoring and communications will take place at ministerial level.

3.2 Communications structure

The meeting of communications directors plays a key role in planning, coordinating, guiding and monitoring the Government's joint communications and the communications on the major reforms. Regular contact with the special advisers responsible for ministerial group communications is essential.

The effectiveness and outcome of communications are reviewed regularly in meetings of communications directors and are reported to the Government and to the meeting of permanent secretaries.

3.3 Government evening sessions or similar negotiations

If necessary, decisions on communications will also be made at government evening sessions or similar negotiation sessions. The Director of Government Communications will perform the role of rapporteur for communications.

The Government will be informed, in government evening sessions if necessary, of the plans for and implementation of communications on current situations, key themes, foresight activities and reforms. This will be based on the preparatory work by the meeting of communications directors. The Government will discuss and determine necessary communications policies and assignments on the basis of information formally presented to it.