Nokian Tyres

About Nokian Tyres

Nokian Tyres is the world’s northernmost tyre manufacturer. Sustainable safety and eco-friendliness across the entire life cycle are the goals for the company’s passenger car tyres, truck tyres and heavy tyres. The group also includes the Vianor chain, specialising in vehicle maintenance and tyre services. In 2018, the company’s turnover was approximately EUR 1.6 billion and it employed some 4,800 people. Nokian Tyres is listed on Nasdaq Helsinki.

Challenge description

Nokian Tyres and Vianor wanted to improve road safety. In most countries, worn tyres are a contributing factor a significant percentage of car accidents. Improving driver awareness of the condition of their tyres and their impact on the safety of their loved ones would decrease road accidents and increase tire sales.

For most consumers, safety is one of the primary criteria for choosing a tyre, but very few will go out of their way to get their tyre condition checked later on. Thus the two key challenges were getting data about tyre condition and providing drivers with easy access to that data

Nokian Tyres

What we did

This was a service design challenge, so user interviews were the first step. They revealed most drivers weren’t aware of the condition of their tyres or the impact that worn tyres have on things like braking distance, aquaplaning and other safety issues. The interviews also found that people were open to discussing tyre-related safety issues.

For validation purposes, Futurice built and advertised a fake service to see how people react and interact with what was offered. The results were very encouraging, and eventually influenced our choice of approach: a service that automatically measures the condition of the tyres and increases the driver’s awareness of its impact on safety, and then offers the driver the option of accessing the data while offering information about the impact of tyre condition on safety - and an opportunity to purchase new tyres. The service uses IoT, 3D scanning technology, machine vision and the newest web technologies.

Nokian Tyres
Nokian Tyres

A busy parking garage operated by Q-Park in downtown Helsinki was chosen as the staging ground for the pilot. All the driver needs to do is drive over a laser scanning strip placed at the entrance of the garage. The data about the tyre surface condition is stored in a database.

Special attention was paid to data security. The car’s registration number is scanned into a separate database and the data about the tyres is not associated with a registration number until the driver provides expressed permission by requesting a report, by either accessing the service’s device independent website or ordering it via SMS.

Why it matters

Snapskan is a quintessential Lean Service Creation project: it started with an idea, refined via a Service Vision Sprint and finally piloted, with a launch at Slush. Snapskan is a new and groundbreaking way of measuring tread depth and tyre safety. By taking the measurement service to where the drivers are, Nokian and Vianor can raise awareness of tyre conditions and improve road safety.

The pilot proved that people are willing to buy tyres in conjunction with the measurement. In northern markets where tyre sales are traditionally seasonal, Snapskan provides Nokian with a new channel for sales outside the market served by tyre storage facilities.

The service launch generated a massive amount of international interest, with over 400 articles in the press all over the world, with an estimated media audience of 66 million during its first six weeks in operation.

The service has been rolled out at parking garages and other facilities in five of the biggest cities in Finland, as well as in Oslo, Norway. In addition to the original ramp scanners that cars drive over, select Vianor locations use handheld devices for added convenience.

Snapskan is an ongoing project that Nokian Tyres and Futurice constantly improve, based on data and customer feedback.

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