We’re equipping Imperial War Museums with the capabilities, processes, and technology to deliver its digital transformation programme:

  • Unified digital roadmap provides blueprint for action
  • Digital operating model details key principles and roles
  • Primary customer journey drives business-wide customer-centricity

How Imperial War Museums is digitally transforming

The challenge

Imperial War Museums (IWM) is a family of five museums recording and showcasing experiences of modern conflict. Its sites and archives enable audiences to explore the causes of war and its impact on people’s lives.

The organisation is at an important stage in its growth and is engaged in a five-year digital transformation initiative to:

  • grow its commercial activities,
  • increase customer engagement and interaction,
  • and embed customer-centred thinking across IWM.

Following an extensive organisation change programme, a digital strategy was formulated to ensure that all future digital investments supported and aligned with wider organisation goals and objectives.  

Bringing this strategy to life was going to require a fundamental review of:

  • how IWM interacted with its various customer groups,
  • the current digital estate and how it would need to evolve,
  • how IWM organised its digital activities,
  • and what internal capabilities would be required to leverage digital technology effectively.

Executing the digital strategy would also require a digital roadmap of investments, putting in place a future-proof technology architecture and delivering the required business solutions.  

IWM was looking for an external partner with the expertise and capabilities to assist.

The Inviqa team has an unrivalled ability to understand our business and user needs. Thanks to their capabilities in business strategy, experience design, and digital product development, they're ideally placed to support our digital transformation.

Charles Bodsworth, assistant director for digital transformation, Imperial War Museums

What we did

A toolkit for transformation


Adopting a highly collaborative approach, a joint IWM-Inviqa project team came together in a dedicated ‘operations room’ at the London branch of IWM to explore and agree:

  • A primary customer journey that puts the customer at the heart of the visitor experience and allows IWM to explore and develop ways of engaging with its customers where digital touchpoints play a key role.
  • A technology architecture that enables IWM to benefit from current and legacy systems whilst providing the flexibility to move towards a future digital estate incrementally, supporting changing business and customer needs.
  • A digital operating model detailing the key principles of Imperial War Museums’ digital transformation programme and identifying the required governance and key roles.
  • A unified digital roadmap identifying and prioritising key initiatives to be completed over the next 3-5 years.

Navigating technical debt


We conducted a detailed assessment of Imperial War Museums’ current digital estate and its ability to support the prioritised roadmap.

This revealed the importance of helping the organisation to navigate its technical debt. A key focus going forward will be to enable Imperial War Museums to decouple its tightly integrated systems using an API middleware layer that will improve the flow of data between its various legacy applications.

This in turn will enable the business to gain agility, benefit from data-driven insights, and achieve a digital estate that’s better equipped to support its digital initiatives.

The results

With our help Imperial War Museums has clarified its objectives, risks, and capability gaps, and has established the stakeholder alignment and buy-in to succeed in its digital transformation plan.

We have helped the organisation to translate its digital strategy into a prioritised roadmap of digital investments and identify the right tools and digital operating model to ‘forecast and anticipate investment several years ahead’.

The outcome of the above work led to the approval, by the IWM executive team, of a significant programme of investment in digital initiatives.

An ongoing partnership


We continue to support Imperial War Museums in our capacity as a strategic partner, advising the business on multiple aspects of its digital transformation and combining our capabilities in strategy, experience design, technology engineering, and capability building to help the organisation realise its strategic goals.

As IWM embarks on implementation, and the delivery of its roadmap, we continue to provide support in areas such as:

  • The development of a service improvement framework aligned to the primary customer journey with supporting KPIs.
  • Working with managers of IWM’s extensive offline and online collections to explore ways of enhancing the customer experience and increasing the commercial value of collections.
  • Putting in place the necessary digital operating model to support Imperial War Museums’ strategic goals.
  • A programme of mentoring that enables teams and leaders to grow their capabilities, work effectively with the wider organisation, and manage projects effectively.
  • Working closely with the digital transformation programme team to manage a middleware procurement exercise.
  • Providing oversight and assurance across the wider digital transformation programme and acting as key delivery partner for digital initiatives.