For over a decade, organizations have struggled with the idea of becoming datadriven. Today, analytic capabilities have become an operational imperative and competitive differentiator. From immersive, always-on, all-is-data systems with digital decision-making intelligence to simply trying to accurately measure people and process productivity— data transformation is as much about cultural change, staff training, and communication as it is about technology.
While enterprise leaders are learning to treat data as a high-value asset, reorient organizational culture toward data-centricity, and adjust strategies to emphasize data and analytics, exponential growth in the sheer volumes of data organizations must manage has slowed progress and produced an era of big data, with little meaning. Even the biggest and best-run organizations often struggle to operationalize data because they don’t understand the role of data in parts of the organization that aren’t traditionally datagenerators. While the production and sales functions have long been robust producers of data, individual contributors, teams, and an ever-growing number of vendors and partners now produce volumes of data containing promising new best practices and clues as to the shape and requirements of tomorrow’s winning enterprises.
Data analytics pioneer LIFTinnovate (LIFT) is answering the call, helping IT and business professionals take charge of the most complex data - the data produced from human interactions. LIFT’s approach to social organic data is changing how IT professionals view their role and how they communicate value back to the business. “When I grew up in the business, IT success was about uptime and service level agreement metrics. Today, LIFT is providing IT executives with a whole new generation of data-driven tools to help IT understand human systems data and tell the story of IT generated business value,” said Dr. Jeffrey Kaplan, LIFT’s COO and co-founder.
Established in 2014, LIFT applies analytics-based insights to help IT executives lead change, empower employees to create new ways of working, and ensure organizations receive the full value of their technology investments. In less than a decade, and despite its relatively small size, LIFT has proven an effective competitor against the industry’s top competitors.“We are well known in the industry because we’ve focused our work where no one else was looking. We dedicated our efforts to understanding how things get done in organizations. How people work with one another to make things happen and what happens when they don’t work together well. As the pioneer of capabilities data analytics, we invested heavily in developing a tool to help us do the job in a way that’s never been done before. The result was our patent-pending MARQi transformation engine – the first of its kind tool that transforms measures of organizational capability into a visual model that is both a current state diagnostic and prescription for future growth,” Jeff excitedly shared.
Others are awakening to the LIFT vision. Recently, the company was named one of Inc. Magazine’s fastest-growing, privately held companies in America (#681 overall, #47, business products and services). In addition, LIFT was named a Cisco 2020 Partner Innovation Award winner, placing 3rd globally and 1st in North America.
With the changing dynamics of the market due to the pandemic, many organizations had no choice but to work remotely due to strict government regulations to curb the virus spread. Everything changed seemingly overnight and organizations were in a state of panic because remote work – which had been a nice to have option – became a must-havetoday imperative. To help quickly ramp up their virtual work efforts, organizations looked to LIFT to help them quickly assess their remote work capabilities, prescribe effective, timely interventions and training to help workers go remote in near realtime. Over the last year, LIFT has worked with dozens of large-scale enterprises and 23 North American Universities to help them bridge the gap between the world's best technologies and the ways people work and learn.
A different kind of data company, LIFT’s work doesn’t stop with data collection and analytics, but includes diagnosing the problem, designing and implementing the interventions (including training and communications), and telling the story of the value created. Cost and time effective, LIFT engagements solve the problem and help IT teams understand how they can contribute to the strategic objectives of the organization. “Because we are different, people don’t always understand what we do. They struggle to put us in a box, categorize our work in terms that no longer apply. So, what do we do? We help organizations overcome challenges in real-time. We diagnose and install organizational upgrades, help individuals, teams and ecosystem partners and vendors upskill their capabilities to meet the needs of an increasingly changing environment,” states Kaplan.
With innovation at its core, the company has developed MARQi, the first-ever science-based patent-pending assessment of an organization’s ability to execute strategy.
MARQi transforms assessment data into a picture of an organization’s ability to execute any given strategy. Need to become a remote workforce overnight? LIFT’s MARQi team will quickly assess your organization’s current capabilities set (108 micro-assessments covering every aspect of getting the job done), diagnose what needs to get done, and then roll up its sleeves and help you do it. Completed MARQi models illustrate how organizational capabilities change from the first assessment through the last element of the intervention.
Because we are different, people don’t always understand what we do. They struggle to put us in a box, categorize our work in terms that no longer apply. So, what do we do? We help organizations overcome challenges in real-time. We diagnose and install organizational upgrades, help individuals, teams and ecosystem partners and vendors upskill their capabilities to meet the needs of an increasingly changing environment
Through innovation, collaboration, and engagement, LIFT helps organizations work differently tomorrow than they do today. MARQi model visualization means IT professionals can present executives with a clear picture of the challenge and the plan to address it in just a few minutes.
Among other things, LIFT also has a unique perspective and proprietary approaches to user data analytics. Most user data analytics deals with utility – how many people downloaded, installed, or turned on a given software tool. LIFT Data Scientists have developed enhancements leading to the best user experiences available and apply that data to underpin and redesign workflows, making organizations much more efficient. It is also worth mentioning that LIFT takes cross-platform normalization (when an organization has two tools that have similar functions) into consideration, which helps organizations understand what tool to use and when to use it.
LIFT services use MARQi models and user data to monitor and predict user needs, provide real-time support, make process and workflow adjustments, and keep users informed on the evolving application of technology tools.
Making the Case with Case Studies
The LIFT value proposition can best be explained through client success stories.
Universities. One major university approached LIFT as they wanted to conduct Freshman Orientation, but it was practically impossible due to COVID. In just six weeks, LIFT helped the university develop and execute a virtual orientation which was, surprisingly, the university's most successful orientation— posting higher student satisfaction ratings than any of its predecessors. In a year of dramatic drop-offs, the university retained a higher number of students than its peers. In addition, MARQi was implemented in almost 30 universities across the US and Canada to examine how they responded to the pandemic.
Law Enforcement & Public Utilities. The team of experts at LIFT worked together with several law enforcement departments and courts around the country to facilitate virtual workshops and coaching to enable employees to work remotely. On top of that, LIFT also supported many public utilities that needed to reengineer their organization overnight due to the pandemic- a job made especially difficult in organizations that work on a scale of decades, not days.
As the company looks toward the future, they will continue to focus on enabling companies to understand how to gain the best outcomes from their technology investments. Organizations still attempting to hire sector specialists should seek partners like LIFT to differentiate themselves. As the competition is likely to intensify in the next 18 months, LIFT is focusing on maintaining its position in the market and continuing to think differently, work differently and do more with more people than ever before.