Goal Scaling Solutions (GSS), Inc. is the result of years of scholarly and market research and business development based on our team values of integrity, equity, and creative problem-solving. Here is our timeline that illustrates our evolution to a core focus on providing intrinsically-motivating tools and services to improve outcomes for individuals and organizations.
2014: Dr. Ann Chapleau first envisioned a digital version for making use of Goal Attainment Scaling (GAS, Kiresuk & Sherman, 1968) much easier. GAS is a method of scaling goals originally developed for program evaluation that has been widely used in varied settings. As a clinician and professor, Dr. Chapleau began implementing GAS as an outcome measure in the occupational therapy teaching clinics at Western Michigan University (WMU). GAS was an ideal choice as it allows a quantitative comparison of outcomes among diverse programs serving diverse individuals with diverse goals. But she found herself running around from clinic to clinic, collecting handwritten goal scales that needed to be manually entered into a software program for statistical analysis. The process was time-consuming and laborious, and prone to human error. In searching the market for goal setting apps for students that used goal scaling, she came up empty handed.
2015: Dr. Chapleau partnered with colleagues from the WMU Department of Computer Science and graduate students to develop an early prototype that eliminated the need for the paper and pen process. As good fortune would have it, Dr. Chapleau then met Dr. Jennifer Harrison, a professor and behavioral health researcher in the WMU School of Social Work. Together, they continued to refine the prototype and explore marketability.
2017: Drs. Chapleau and Harrison began participating in multiple rounds of Customer Discovery sponsored by the National Science Foundation and traveled extensively to meet with researchers, clinicians, and business executives about their program evaluation needs.
2018: We incorporated as Goal Scaling Solutions, Inc. but continued to incubate our technology within Western Michigan University.
2020: Multiple new features were added to the prototype to create a secure, comprehensive software platform. Further design refinements were made to meet tele-education and telehealth needs heightened during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Current: GSS development has been funded through the Health Resources and Services Administration, the Sammons Center for Innovation in Occupation-Based Technology, the Small Business Administration, and WMU. Our commercially-available tools are designed to meet goal achievement needs in business, education, and healthcare. GSS is a HIPPA and FERPA-protected comprehensive software platform that is both web-based and available on the app stores by subscription only. Supporting goal achievement requires evidence-based tools. We have conducted multiple research studies using GSS and published and presented our findings extensively in peer-reviewed publications and in state, national, and international conferences. Our outcomes are consistent with the research literature that has shown that users feel more motivated to work on their goals and have a higher rate of achievement when they are individualized and supported over time.