The Theatre behind Theatron
The Finnish National Theatre was founded in 1872. It is the oldest Finnish speaking theatre in Finland and employs around 350 people. The Theatre’s four permanent stages and other premises (lobbies, theatre club) deliver close to 600 performances and approximately 15 premieres a year. In addition to this, the theatre creates touring productions and welcomes visiting companies. Production manager Tapani Kukkola outlines some of the benefits of using Theatron in comparison to earlier methods:
“production planning collates a huge variety of information and produces printed reports for different purposes. Previous methods were largely based on manual input, which was very time-consuming because it had to be constantly repeated for separate departments or functions. Theatron collects and coordinates data which has once been introduced. Concentrating data input in Theatron therefore reduced work hours and related costs”.
“With previous methods the risk of human error was high, for example cases of double-booking which can be disastrous for planning. Theatron ensures that staff members, stages or other facilities do not get double booked. It also makes it easier to gather information concerning eg touring companies in one place”.
The Finnish National Theatre started to search for an advanced solution to the challenges and pit-falls of production planning in 2005. They were looking for software that would help them maintain high quality in production planning and enable cost-effectiveness.
The first customer of Theatron
The Theatre began discussions for developing software that would address their needs in 2005. Mansoft had a solid reputation as a software developer and their customer satisfaction guaranteed them to be a good partner.
Theatron was initially developed by Mansoft for the Finnish National Theater, but also to answer the needs of any theater. As Tapani Kukkola explains:
“When we started using Theatron, we decided to concentrate all our data in one place: stages, schedules, staff and productions. After the initial data input, it was easy to create different reports for different departments, as well as for our organization’s intranet. It has also made it easy to send out schedules for the needs of visiting artists and other colleagues outside our own staff”.
“Theatron has proved to be an efficient, cost-effective and time-saving tool which has effectively improved production planning and significantly reduced human error”.
“After the initial software development, Mansoft has continued to be a valued partner, making changes and developing applications as we require at a very reasonable cost. We have been very happy with Theatron and with our co-operation with Mansoft”.
Päivi Isosaari is the administrative director of Finnish National Theatre and a member of the executive group. She comments:
“Theatron helps us to maintain our position as the most important meeting place within the Finnish theatre scene. We want to make productions that matter, art that reflects our society. We can focus on our goals with confidence, knowing that Theatron is there to support us behind the scenes. We can definitely recommend it to other theatres”.
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