The Primary Reason why most Digital Transformation Programmes Fail

There is one relatively simple, but essential ingredient missing from most digital transformation
programmes. Without it they will fail, or at the very least fall far short of their goals. Leadership and
culture change are of course essentially important to success, but these in themselves can’t fulfil their
potential without this missing ingredient.

This ingredient, which is far too often missed, is Knowledge and Information Management (KIM) and
it sits at the very heart of successful digital transformation. Too many social housing providers find
themselves data rich, but insight poor. Without access to accurate, data-led insight, how do you
properly understanding your true starting point or how you are progressing? Almost all strategic
objectives are reliant on swift access to accurate information. This is particularly the case for digital
initiatives such as online services, customer management, automation and artificial intelligence. KIM
is fundamental to their success.

The business case for KIM being front and centre of digital transformation strategy is compelling. Here
are just some examples:

1. Data quality and security is now listed as the single highest priority on many HA Risk

2. Approximately 80% of governance downgrades are related to poor KIM.2
3. The Regulator of Social Housing (RSH) has stated that ‘data quality is the cornerstone on
which all compliance is based’.3

4. The RSH has also a stated that social housing providers require “error detection software” to
safeguard compliance and reduce risk.4

5. The Ombudsman has been damming of sector data quality and has recently stated that KIM
is the closest thing the sector has to a silver bullet.5

6. Increasing investment in business intelligence was recently given as the single highest
priority by local government leaders.6

7. Data quality is an essential component in the achievement of most published strategic
housing association objectives.7

8. Compliance with the Charter for Social Housing and NHF Code of Governance can only be
achieved with a focus on KIM.8

9. With some compliance requirements now becoming criminal, poor KIM in certain
circumstances can ruin the careers and lives of social housing executives, not to mention the
lives of tenants. This needs be avoided at all cost.9

  1. Nick Murphy’s closing presentation to the Housing Technology Data Matters Conference (17) Nick Murphy | LinkedIn
  2. 3C’s own research based on RoSH published list of governance downgrades
  3. Consumer Regulation Review, Page 9 Paragraph 2.7
  4. Sector Risk Profile 2022, Clause 3.27
  5. Knowledge and Information Management | Housing Ombudsman (
  6. Local Gov Strategy Forum survey results 2023
  7. If you check your own organisation’s published strategic objectives you will find they require accurate insight
  8. Social-housing-white-paper---nhf-member-briefing.pdf
  9. The Building Safety Act - GOV.UK (
  10. A principle cause of executive stress is a lack of confidence in the information that they base
    strategic decisions, governance, risk and compliance upon.

    Fortunately, all of these challenges have proven, referenceable solutions which allow organisations
    to demonstrate that they have KIM under control. Not only will they enable and empower digital
    transformation programmes, but they will underpin organisational security and be the catalyst for
    improving the lives of customers and staff.

    If you ever get out of bed in the morning wondering what your job is all about, this should be central
    to it.

Colin Sales, 3C CEO

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