The Challenge: Registers of Scotland (RoS), a cornerstone of the Scottish economy, oversees 21 public registers, most notably as the guardian for land and property registers, which underpin the Scottish property market. Their registers are a critical asset for the Scottish economy to make important, data-driven decisions about land and property.

RoS faced significant challenges when moving from an outsourced IT model to establishing an in-house digital powerhouse. As Head of IT Enablement, Paul Christie, explained, “We didn’t have the concept of release pipelines embedded within the business. We didn’t have the skills, the technology, structure, the practices, or the culture to underpin the ambition the organisation had.”

Their goal was clear: to pivot towards a product and service-centric delivery model and surmount the technical debt barriers, maximizing their agility and innovation potential in service of the citizens of Scotland.

Approach: RoS collaborated with Emergn for self-sustained growth. This involved integrating Emergn’s Value, Flow, Quality (VFQ) principles and product management strategies within their IT enablement teams.

Emergn played a pivotal role through direct integration within RoS digital enablement teams, senior leadership coaching, and employee training. As their agile expertise matured, Emergn shifted from hands-on to an advisory and continuous learning role.

As Paul Christie described it, “We embraced a fail-fast culture, enabling RoS to ensure that true value realisation was embedded within our initiatives.”

Outside of the IT enablement function, the RoS team developed a delivery approach via multidisciplinary teams brigaded around common goals to support innovation and product sustainability.

Key Milestones: RoS introduced the Scotland Land Information Service (ScotLIS), a digital platform for land and property data, and the Digital Submissions Service which streamlined property transactions—especially crucial during the Covid-19-induced property market challenges. Both services are award-winning pillars for RoS.

Paul Christie concluded, “We have realised the power in harmonising technology with product-centricity and multidisciplinary teams, founded on core principles around agile ways of working. As a digital business, we have achieved that delicate equilibrium of delivery vs ability to delivery.”

Conclusion: RoS’s transformation went beyond technology, emphasizing a progressive organizational culture. Recognizing the importance of sustaining product-focused teams for digital aspirations, and with Emergn’s support, RoS initiated and continued this journey.

This transformation showcases the evolution of traditional institutions in the digital age, underscoring collaboration, agile methodologies, and customer-centricity.