Are leaders born or nurtured? With coaching and commitment, individuals can go beyond what they are currently capable of, and proactively cultivate leadership qualities. To empower anyone at any stage of their personal growth to achieve more, a New Zealand-based consulting firm Adeption, is employing technology for smarter, self-led behaviour change—at scale.
“We aim to positively impact 100 million people by democratising quality leadership development,” shared Amol Deshpande, CTO of Adeption. To realise this vision, Adeption developed the Adeption.io platform, a leadership coaching app designed to encourage people to reflect, take on-the-job action, and share insights, all while guided by artificial intelligence and behavioural science.
First steps – A secure foundation.
Till 2017, Adeption was hosted on a private infrastructure by a third-party service provider. This arrangement had several drawbacks including limited access control and scalability issues as well as concerns around data privacy and security arising from a shared application infrastructure. “To address these issues, we were looking for a cloud-based solution that provided robust, secure, and a scalable platform to host our application,” said Amol.
In addition, Adeption’s content recommendation algorithms were previously based on an open source, third-party solution. However, this third-party integration solution posed efficiency and security issues. Every time a prediction was needed, a request had to be sent outside the system making the process less secure.
To reinforce security, efficiency, and its competitive advantage, the team decided to leverage Microsoft Azure for its in-built security, ease of integration, speed of production, and machine learning capabilities, among others. With a secure platform in place, the team could now focus on developing their proprietary content prediction algorithm, which was effectively achieved on Microsoft Azure Machine Learning Studio.
Despite the team having had no experience with Machine Learning Studio, they found it very intuitive and easy to use. The team has been able to integrate custom scripts, as well as create API endpoints for each model, enabling them to reduce integration complexities, and effectively isolate prediction logic from application logic. “Machine learning was extremely easy to use and provided a lot of in-built modules to configure the algorithm. This substantially reduced our development efforts,” said Amol Deshpande. Through a series of sprints and iterations, Adeption was ready—in just 8 weeks, developers built, trained and tested prediction models designed for behavioural change. “Using Machine Learning Studio to build our prediction model was a good decision, since it allowed us to build, train and test models easily and provided a very simple way to integrate the model into our application without compromising the performance,” said Amol. In addition, Adeption offers tailored content which facilitates self-led personal improvements of users. “Clients and prospects get really excited about delivering targeted content to individuals – it’s a differentiator in our space,” added Amol.
Adeption and the use of AI has helped Penske Truck Leasing and its subsidiary Penske Logistics to scale transformational leadership development to all its frontline leaders. Adeption has enabled Penske’s training department to effectively deliver a fully integrated leadership development experience, enhancing in person learning events for a truly blended learning approach. The technology accelerates the development of new mindsets and behaviours in a collaborative and interactive virtual setting that fosters learning and relationships over many months. The results have been so compelling Penske has now integrated Adeption into a variety of their leadership development offerings.
Adapting for a smarter, self-led future.
To further optimise its offering for users and clients, Adeption is already working to further upgrade its algorithms, along with plans to introduce new machine learning models leveraging Azure capabilities. Upon implementation, Adeption will be better positioned to build up users’ personality and leadership profiles, as well as evaluate their progress.