Case Study

Rabobank: Building digital agility at scale

19 pages
September 2019
Reference: IMD-7-2070

The case illustrates how a financial institution with a conservative culture embraced digital transformation in a highly competitive environment. It focuses on the challenges inherent in moving from a start-up phase to a scale-up phase. The key protagonist, Nieke Martens, was charged with leading the Digital Hub, a pilot project located inside Rabobank’s HQ in Utrecht. The Hub began by initiating three squads to examine customer journeys using an agile methodology. The three journeys were very successful, creating a positive impact for customers. Building on this success, they decided to scale-up to 10, then 20, then 30 teams within a five month timeframe. The case explores the different tensions that this expansion created across the bank. The case closes with Martens and her executive sponsor having to present their recommendations to the Managing Board for the best way to meet Rabobank’s digital transformation goals at scale.

Learning Objective
  • Learn how a conservative incumbent bank took steps to embrace digital transformation.
  • Explore the different challenges related to the shift from start-up to scale-up phases.
  • Identify the key challenges and tensions facing the team in the Digital Hub and the employees in the squads, as well as managing the relationship with the rest of the bank.
  • Consider how to both structure an organization’s digital transformation and the issues they might face through its implementation.
Digital Transformation, Strategy Implementation, Agility
Europe, Netherlands
Rabobank, Finance and Insurance
Field Research
© 2019
Available Languages
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