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EU PolicyWatch

Database of national-level policy measures

Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.

Factsheet for measure FI-2020-22/1504 – measures in Finland

Kotkamills' workers autonomy increased as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic

Kotkamillsin työntekijöille lisää vastuuta koronan vuoksi

Country Finland , applies locally

    • – FI1C4 Kymenlaakso
Time period Open ended, started on 30 May 2020
Context COVID-19
Type Company practices
Category Protection of workers, adaptation of workplace
– Changes of management approach
Author Amanda Kinnunen (Oxford Research) and Eurofound
Measure added 30 November 2020 (updated 07 March 2021)

Background information

Kotkamills is a Finnish forest industry company located in southern Finland. As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, Kotkamills' turnover increased rapidly. The company produces, for instance, cardboard products and the demand for these products has increased rapidly due to changed consumer behaviour.

Therefore, Kotkamills has had to adapt to both the increased demand and COVID-19 safety regulations. Managers and other white-collar workers have worked from distance but blue-collar workers have continued working at the production units. As a result of this, the company had to change their management approach.

Content of measure

According to the company, the autonomy of workers has increased as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. When the management is working from home, the workers have to make more decisions on their own, it is not possible to consult the management in the case of every smaller decision. Workers have been careful to follow the COVID-19 safety regulations and actively taken responsibility for quality control.

The company says that communication between employees is now more frequent and they have organised digital information meetings for the entire staff. The number of meetings between managers have decreased.

Increasing employees’ responsibility is not new to Kotkamills but they describe their organisational culture as agile. According to the company, they seek to create a frame for the community of people working for Kotkamills and allow a lot of leeway for individuals. A shift towards a flat, less bureaucratic organisation has been their aim even before the COVID-19 pandemic.

Use of measure

No information available.


  • Work organisation

Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Applies to all workers Does not apply to businesses Does not apply to citizens

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
Company / Companies

Social partners

Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role Unknown Unknown
Form Not applicable Not applicable

Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:

  • Unknown
  • Main level of involvement: Company level


No information available.

Views and reactions

No information available.

Sectors and occupations

    • Economic area Sector (NACE level 2)
      C - Manufacturing C17 Manufacture of paper and paper products

This case is not occupation-specific.


  • 30 May 2020: The Kotkamills plant sets records and employees have taken on more responsibility for the corona - “Not everyone is asked for advice or approval now” (Kotkamillsin tehdas takoo ennätyksiä ja työntekijät ovat ottaneet koronan vuoksi lisää vastuuta – ”Kaikista asioista ei kysytä nyt esimieheltä neuvoa tai hyväksyntää”) (


Eurofound (2020), Kotkamills' workers autonomy increased as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, measure FI-2020-22/1504 (measures in Finland), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin,


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Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.