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Posted June 25, 2021

Custom software studio Xtern Software partnered with Boston-based Connected Commons to scale their rapid organizational network analytics platform. Xtern enabled Connected Commons to bring an innovative product concept to market, scale it tenfold, and deploy the platform to companies across the world.

Connected Commons is an intentional network dedicated to developing the research, relationships, and resources that enable individuals and organizations to thrive in the Connected Economy. Over the past 25 years, Connected Commons has engaged with over 300 highly regarded organizations, including Pfizer, Cisco, and General Mills.

They began to develop the Agility Accelerator about two years ago. It’s a self-managed analytics platform that visualizes and measures collaboration among and within groups. Accompanying the results are customized research-based recommendations for action planning.

Connected Commons knew they had a great concept. But software development proved to be a challenge. "The initial code was restrictive, and developed without an eye to performance and growth," says Director of Operations and Applied Research Deb Zehner. "And our initial surveys could only handle 200 participants, which we knew would prevent us from scaling."

{mprestriction ids="1,4,9"}Enter Xtern Software. They cleaned up the code, made it scalable, and moved all the data to Amazon Web Services (AWS) hosting. Their founder, Keir Davis, is a certified AWS Solutions Architect, so he had the training and background to engineer such a move. From there, Connected Commons had the ability to include up to 2,000 participants in an assessment.

Connected Commons set to work on their largest project yet, with a multinational health data sciences company, only to encounter an unexpected roadbump: the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). The project could not get off the ground without an immediate transfer of the platform from US servers to European servers to comply with GDPR. Otherwise, the project would be shut down.


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