DX Stories: The Keyholding Company – Digital Transformation - Full systems replacement

DX Stories: The Keyholding Company – Digital Transformation - Full systems replacement

The Challenge

The Keyholding Company is a security services and alarm response business, headquartered in London, with a national network of partner companies. in 2013, CEO Charlie Gordon Lennox approached Haulmont to partner him in supporting a digital transformation of his company.

They wanted to build an enterprise IT system that would handle all aspects of day to day operations and provide a platform to enable the next stage in The Keyholding Company’s evolution. To move from a leading independent keyholding provider, and to become the most technologically advanced player in the entire security and response industry.

The Solution

An initial three-month pilot project delivered a proof-of-concept solution comprising enterprise-spec controller screens managing a highly custom mobile workforce app After its successful internal deployment, the first challenge was persuading The Keyholding Company's network of partners to adopt the new technology. The experience of encouraging this cultural shift in a traditionally conservative industry would prove invaluable later in supporting The Keyholding Company's own transition from legacy security provider to tech-enabled service provider.

After completing the successful pilot, The Keyholding Company's founder, Charlie Gordon-Lennox now had the confidence to invest in building an entirely new enterprise system from scratch. Haulmont Business Analysts and Java developers worked alongside domain experts from The Keyholding Company in a truly collaborative partnership to deliver a bespoke system, called ‘Chase’.

The introduction of Chase as the operational backbone of the business was a huge risk, which was mitigated via parallel running of Chase alongside the legacy system for a period. Departments were bought online one by one to enable training and user feedback to iterate the system to meet the requirements of the users on the ground. Once complete, this first phase of The Keyholding Company's digital transformation freed the business from the restrictions of its legacy system, unlocking opportunities for rapid scaling quickly whilst maintaining service levels that put The Keyholding Company in the top 5% of all security companies.

The second phase of the project was digitising external touch points such as Client Portal websites and integrations with third party services such as credit control partners, IP Phones, Twilio, Zendesk, PeopleHR etc. whilst building a technology-first culture. After initially facing resistance from other teams, the incremental success that each new piece of functionality delivered has built confidence to the point where tech adoption has shifted the culture - and tech-first is now a company-wide mantra.

The third phase has been to build an internal team for The Keyholding Company to utilise with all the vast data generated. Data analysis allowed the team to derive operational insights to increase efficiency and also provide competitive advantage via the provision of client MI that is unmatched in the industry, and as a result, large FM players now demanding to partner with The Keyholding Company because of their leadership in data and analytics.

For the future, phase four will be building a platform to integrate Chase with the new generation of IoT enabled smart devices, both in the home and in corporate facilities, an exciting area of innovation in technology and one that The Keyholding Company is well poised to lead in, thanks to its experience over recent years.


As a result of this digital transformation, The Keyholding Company has added multi-site corporate contracts to its private residential core business. Alongside security services such as patrols and alarm response, they now provide a wide range of planned visits and response services to multiple clients with 30,000+ sites in the UK and the company now serves ⅓ of the UK highstreet.

Of the 500,000+ jobs executed each year, 98% are now automated, saving thousands of man hours.

Over 12,000 phone calls per month to emergency contacts are now handled with no human involvement, similarly a further 8,000 emails to partner providers are now automated each month. Since go-live, average processing time for booking an alarm response has been reduced from 5-8 minutes to under a minute.

Year -on-year revenues are up 18% in 2018 and EBITDA has increased by 123%. The company is now working alongside larger players in the sector consulting on technology and data, and their position at the vanguard of IoT and cloud-based technology in security is opening up new opportunities both on a national and international level that would not have been possible before this comprehensive digital transformation.

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