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Digital Transformation Framework – Part I

In today’s constantly evolving digital world, organizations must align their strategies, data, security, and core principles. At Karma Advisory, we believe this alignment should be the primary focus of any initiative from the very beginning. We prioritize building trust by listening to our clients and working closely with key stakeholders. Our Digital Transformation Framework has proven to be a powerful tool for solving crucial technology challenges and ensuring solutions are future-proof. 

Our Approach of Humility

Every business faces various challenges, some of which may not be openly discussed or easily discovered. At Karma Advisory, we understand the significance of the knowledge shared by our partners and avoid having preconceived notions. Instead, we come ready to listen and learn, acknowledging our clients are the experts in their business and have critical insights necessary for the success of any program. 

The Danger of Oversimplification

Consultants offer fresh perspectives and valuable experience, but sometimes the temptation to compartmentalize challenges into fixed methodologies can lead to oversimplification. At Karma Advisory, we appreciate the value of methodologies, but we also understand organizational challenges are complex and nuanced. We are passionate about delving into the details, asking relevant questions, and refining our thought processes and solutions along the way. 

Karma Advisory Digital Transformation Framework

At Karma Advisory, we perceive digital transformation as the alignment of strategy, data, security, and core principles. Our Framework is represented graphically below, followed by a breakdown of the four leading success factors in our Framework. 

Karma Advisory Digital Transformation Framework

Strategic and Policy Alignment: At the top of our framework, understanding the ‘why’ of an initiative is crucial. This ‘why’ gives direction to teams and motivates them to address challenges. By understanding the strategy and aligning it with policy we can create effective messaging and maintain focus. 

Data and Security Alignment: Anchored at the foundation, data alignment signifies the lifeblood of any institution. A team’s operation generates data, which needs to be transformed first into information and then insights. To do this, we understand that legacy systems, ambiguous data definitions, and the rapid evolution of technology can prove to be challenging for transformation projects. In addition, when discussing data, in today’s digitization of operations we believe security is no longer simply a technology requirement or compliance activity, but an organizational cornerstone. 

Guiding Principles: Think of these as the compass of an institution. Positioned to the left, these principles are pivotal in steering decisions, underpinning project mandates, and ensuring everyone is aligned with the project’s goals, aims, and scope. 

Iterative Improvements: Whether it be governance structure, business processes, or training and change management, the ethos that enables success is iterative. Ongoing improvements, or in other words, the small wins, create compound returns. At Karma Advisory, we take a whole lifecycle approach to solution development. Our senior resources roll up their sleeves to understand current challenges, capture future-state goals, develop a plan for meeting those goals, and most importantly, execute projects to deliver value iteratively. 

Be on the lookout for the next part of this series where we will dive deeper into the components of our Framework.

Karma Advisory works at the intersection of business and technology for both public and private sector clients. We are focused on helping organizations translate their business needs into actionable technology solutions. We work with our clients’ teams to understand their goals and on-the-ground realities and work side-by-side to implement solutions. We strive to be an objective, trusted, and results-driven partner — bringing a values-driven approach to working with our clients to achieve their vision and goals.

We look forward to speaking with you, sharing more about our work, and learning more about your organization. Visit us at or reach out at

Daily Check-In and Status Email Check-Ins

Daily Check-In and Status Email Check-Ins

When projects get rolling and eventually when the team is in crunch time, there is a strong need to keep the PM/BAs/Developers all on the same page. To that end, here is what we do:

  • Morning and Evening Check-Ins:
    • Review the open issues/bugs/next steps
    • Schedule the day of bug fixing, testing and any other analysis work needed
  • Detailed Status Emails (after each check-in):
    • Yesterday Review: [DATE]
      • [MODULE Name 1]
        • [Bugs/Fixes/Updates listed out]
        • [MODULE Name 2]
        • [Bugs/Fixes/Updates listed out]
    • Todays’ Most Important Tasks: [DATE]
      • [MODULE Name 1]
        • [Bugs/Fixes/Updates listed out]
      • [MODULE Name 2]
        • [Bugs/Fixes/Updates listed out]
    • This Week
      • Monday, MM/DD:
        • [Likely Task/Goal/Milestone]
      • Tuesday, MM/DD
        • [Likely Task/Goal/Milestone]
      • Wednesday, MM/DD
        • [Likely Task/Goal/Milestone]
      • Thursday, MM/DD
        • [Likely Task/Goal/Milestone]
      • Friday, MM/DD
        • [Likely Task/Goal/Milestone]
      • Milestone 1 by MM/DD
      • Milestone 2 by MM/DD
    • Future Release Planning/Backlog
      • Note: Items added to Smartsheets backlog here.
      • [Module 1] Backlog
      • [Module 2] Backlog


Welfare in the Exponential Age with Azheem Azhar

Welfare in the Exponential Age with Azheem Azhar

One of the challenges we face are the need to innovate and transform our institutions to be more dynamic and regenerative. Whether it be the WHO, World Bank, UN, or a government agency, etc. — these institutions were made for a world that was far more stable; they were designed in a world where rapid pace of technological was not a part of the discussion.

This podcast discusses the concepts of the commons of the future, the idea of welfare state in the future, and ideas around new industrialist. Hilary Cottam and Azheem Azhar have an intense and dynamic conversation.

One of the key ideas from Hilary, we must move from Homo econonomicus to Sapiens integra:
– “Homo econonomicus — guided by ration to maximize economic gains”
– “Sapiens integra — a new theoretical human with stronger connections to nature and other humans”

This is worthy of your time. And, learn more about


Data Portability: NYPD vs. Palantir

Data Portability: NYPD vs. Palantir

The concept of data portability is all too often simplified to the question “Can we have our data in a machine readable format?”

At best, this ensures the data can be loaded to a new system and at worst the data can be added to a data warehouse.

Palantir, Peter Thiels company, provides a lens into the importance of “thinking from the end” with systems — i.e. what happens what the system potentially reaches obsolescence or you simply want to leave it for whatever reason.

Can you get the data out?

And, can you output the analysis in machine readable format to continue the work in another system?

I assume most companies will not hand over queries as they could claim they are proprietary.

However, this complexity, clear provides the importance of creating in-house capabilities for analytics, and building in the end of contract clauses and what they actually mean into contracts. 

The department has created a new system to replace Palantir, and it wants to transfer the analysis generated by Palantir’s software to the new system. But Palantir, the NYPD claims, has not produced the full analysis in a standardized format — one that would work with the new software — despite multiple requests from the police department in recent months.

Big data helped New York’s cops bust Bobby Shmurda. But as the NYPD’s contract with tech giant Palantir comes to an end, things could get messy.
— Read on

Machine Learning Innovation Rules

It’s tempting to get caught in the trap of applying a promising new technology like Machine Learning to every problem, but try and resist this temptation. Instead, try to follow Joshua Porter’s advice as he states in his Principles of Product Design:

“…[P]roduct innovation isn’t about new products that solve new problems. Product innovation is about new products that solve existing problems better than they’re currently solved.”