Any industry – any type of “organization” including companies, communities and coalitions – can benefit from our approach to building knowledge and developing strategies. Below is a a list of the diverse range of industries and domains where our skills and tools have been successfully applied:

No matter the industry or domain you’re in – what issues you are working to address – contact us to find out how our unique capacity building approach can increase the likelihood you’ll achieve the results you need.


IT, hardware and software engineering face multiple systemic challenges. Innovation, technical debt, development bottlenecks, and good ole fashioned bugs in the code. According to Wikipedia, ‘The term is commonly used as a synonym for computers and computer networks, but it also encompasses other information distribution technologies such as television and telephones. Several products or services within an economy are associated with information technology, including computer hardware, software, electronics, semiconductors, internet, telecom equipment, and e-commerce.’

Example: System Performance

The Need

A services company was addressing internal and external customer satisfaction as it related to their computer systems. Although IT had made significant progress in improving performance, they were still experiencing customer dissatisfaction.

Customer Service

It’s commonly known, good customer service requires staff to have the resources needed to deliver what the customer wants and needs. This often means having effective IT systems, as well as adequate staff. But exceptional customer service only occurs if staff are motivated to “go the extra mile”, even when facing challenging circumstances…and challenging customers.

Example: Services Organization

The Need

Staff at a national services organization were reporting being overworked and understaffed. Leadership wanted to understand the underlying systemic forces that were impeding the company’s ability to attract, develop and retain staff and identify high leverage approaches to address the issue.

Product Design

Product design is often a “push” process, where a majority of features are developed and then sold to potential customers. The process of generating not just users, but happy users (aka Advocates) is less understood and usually an after thought.

Example: Workplace Learning Initiative

The Need

An aerospace company was developing a Workplace Leadership Initiative to integrate formal and informal learning. Employees could even contribute content/expertise through a web portal. Putting together the various pieces of the program was a challenging opportunity. The development team wanted to apply SysQ to understand how to best execute the initiative.

Human Resources

From Wikipedia: ‘Human resources are the people who make up the workforce of an organization, business sector, or economy. “Human capital” is sometimes used synonymously with “human resources”, although human capital typically refers to a more narrow effect (i.e., the knowledge the individuals embody and economic growth). A human-resources department (HR department) of an organization performs human resource management, overseeing various aspects of employment, such as compliance with labour law and employment standards, administration of employee benefits, and some aspects of recruitment.’

Example: Community Workforce Development

(Although community-wide, this example is relevant to any organization.)

The Need

A large city with a strong technology-based economy was finding it challenging to attract and retain the necessary workforce to maintain sustainable growth.

Public Health (including Healthcare)

There’s been a shift in defining what constitutes public health over the past 20+ years. Once only focused on the healthcare delivery system, health professionals now look at public health in terms of a host of factors and systems that contribute to well-being. SysQ is perfectly suited to understand how to improve this multi-faceted, interdependent set of issues.

Example: Adverse Childhood Experiences

The Need

Health professionals now understand that Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) have a tremendous impact on a person’s lifelong well-being – to the point where someone experiencing many in childhood has decreased life expectancy. What’s an effective strategy for addressing?

Reasons Typical Approaches Fail

Most approaches focus on symptoms and finding ways to remove children from families where they are experiencing ACEs, but don’t address deeper, societal issues.

Public Policy

SysQ is essential to effective public policy. According to Wikipedia, ‘public policy making [is] characterized as a dynamic, complex, and interactive system through which public problems are identified and countered by creating new public policy or by reforming existing public policy. It is a continuous process that has many feedback loops. The public problems that influence public policy making can be of economic, social, or political nature.’

Example: Malnutrition in Peru

The Need

JUNTOS was Peru’s conditional cash transfer program providing incentives for families to use the health system and reduce malnutrition. The government was concerned about expanding and strengthening capacity to meet the desired increase in demand.

Reasons Typical Approaches Fail

The implementation of public policy requires the coordination of multiple stakeholders within – and external to – government. Often these stakeholders have hidden agendas and vested interests in where funding goes. Without thorough and rigorous analysis, implementation is inefficient and sometimes ineffective.

Community Development

From Wikipedia: ‘The United Nations defines community development as “a process where community members come together to take collective action and generate solutions to common problems.” It is a broad term given to the practices of civic leaders, activists, involved citizens and professionals to improve various aspects of communities, typically aiming to build stronger and more resilient local communities.’

Example: Improving Failing Schools

The Need

One of the more impoverished neighborhoods in a large US metropolitan region had some of the lowest academic outcomes from their school system…and wanted to improve it.

Reasons Typical Approaches Fail

Communities often make investments independently – uncoordinated – in a scattershot, point source approach. An example is investing in a health clinic to increase access to health care. But without simultaneously investing in other aspects of the community, results are weak and localized only to health.


From Wikipedia: ‘Sustainability is the process of maintaining change in a balanced environment, in which the exploitation of resources, the direction of investments, the orientation of technological development and institutional change are all in harmony and enhance both current and future potential to meet human needs and aspirations. For many in the field, sustainability is defined through the following interconnected domains or pillars: environment, economic and social. Sub-domains of sustainable development have been considered also: cultural, technological and political.’

Example: Climate Change

The Need

Policymakers face a daunting task of understanding how much impact decisions (energy efficiency and emissions reductions) will have on their constituents – and for the global population.