Partnering with Arc XP to Provide Custom Development Support and Evolve Flagship Product

Wizeline was a pretty natural extension for Arc; we are very similar from a cultural perspective — risk tolerance, the expectation around innovation, and even the company maturity. We’re in similar places, so we complement each other well.”

Zach Perry

Vice President, Platform Engineering, Arc XP

Executive Summary

Arc XP is a software-as-a-service (SaaS) digital experience platform originally built by The Washington Post for its newsroom. Today, Arc’s platform has expanded to enable enterprise companies, retail brands, and media & entertainment organizations to create and distribute content, drive digital commerce, and deliver powerful multi-channel experiences. 

Arc launched its partnership with Wizeline in August 2019, focused on platform support. Over time, the partnership expanded to include professional services that could scale with Arc’s sales efforts, enabling new customers on Arc’s platform to receive custom development support from a Wizeline team with deep platform expertise. Today, Arc also leverages Wizeline’s capabilities for core platform development and product evolution.

Read more to see how Wizeline has worked with the Arc team to achieve fewer tickets, optimized processes, and increased delivery efficiency.

Wizeline’s work with Arc spans platform support, professional services, and now core platform development. Our first engagement was around platform support, which helps us maintain customer success with our products. Four or five months later, we identified a need within our professional services group to expand quickly as our customers grew globally. We expanded services and added Wizeline teams in the Americas, Europe, and Asia to supplement our existing global staff. Now in 2021, we identified a similar need to keep up with the demand for new product growth and are leveraging Wizeline’s capabilities as well."

Zach Perry

Vice President, Platform Engineering, Arc XP

The Challenge

As its customer base expanded, Arc was experiencing an increased support workload, resulting in platform engineers spending less time on product innovation. This required a technical team with experience managing L2 support. In addition to the competing demands, support was delivered inconsistently across the platform’s products due to informal standards for internal tools and documentation. Therefore, it was essential for Arc to deploy a scalable process that allowed for customer response and continued platform innovation for current and future customers.

In the early stages of the Wizeline onboarding, the team completed a one-month knowledge transfer followed by a three-month stabilization period. By month four, Wizeline took ownership of three products and eventually scaled up to manage ten internal Arc products. 

Why Wizeline?

Arc XP was attracted to the service offering of Wizeline’s Product Evolution practice, whose charter is to manage and optimize a customer’s existing applications, add features to meet new business requirements, streamline processes, improve workflows, and reduce waste or risk. 

Furthermore, Wizeline was selected because its high-quality delivery, nearshore services, and time zone proximity aligned well with Arc’s business and customer locations, increasing Arc’s overall time-to-market. In addition, Wizeline provided engineering support in a quick-to-scale model that helped extend Arc’s internal engineering capacity. 

Arc also looked to Wizeline’s engineers to provide its own engineering teams with training, increasing productivity with 24/7 support across three global regions. Working as an implementation partner for Arc’s customers, Wizeline was able to make introductions and help strengthen new and existing relationships.

Mastering Arc’s Headless CMS Environment

Arc’s headless CMS consists of an ecosystem of intuitive tools and streamlined workflows to help content teams deliver meaningful content to their audiences faster. The tech stack was determined by Arc’s engineering team and developed using various programming languages and AWS technologies. Wizeline engineers learned all relevant technologies to be proficient across the entire tech stack in just a few months. The technologies employed by Arc and integrated by Wizeline include:

Languages

  • Node
  • JavaScript/React
  • Java
  • Go 
  • Python

Amazon Web Services (AWS) Solutions

  • Lambda
  • ECS (Elastic Container Service)
  • Elemental
  • S3
  • DynamoDB 
  • Aurora
  • DocumentDB
  • Elasticsearch
  • Elasticache
  • Kafka (MSK)
  • Kinesis
  • Cloudfront

The Result: Fewer Tickets, Optimized Processes, and Increased Delivery Efficiency

Throughout the engagement, Wizeline has delivered on meeting Arc’s success metrics of client satisfaction, on-time delivery, and overall quality of software performance. We’ve also ensured the Wizeline team retains platform knowledge with low turnover and a quick time-to-staff for new roles. Here are some highlights of the engagement so far:

  • Ticket reduction: Wizeline dramatically reduced L2 Kanban board tickets requiring escalation to L3 by 49% after new process improvements.
  • Support process improvement: Wizeline created a collaborative process with a tight communication framework across the platform engineering teams, increasing response velocity and incident resolution where more than one product was impacted.
  • Increased process visibility: Wizeline added analytics to the support process that allowed the Arc and Wizeline teams to identify trends that feed continuous improvement efforts.
  • Increased efficiency: Wizeline implemented a triage step for all new tickets to review if all required information was available before migrating it to the team’s to-do list. The incident ticket remains in triage until the reporter completes any missing information. This additional step allows the team to focus only on qualified tickets. 
  • “Train the trainers”: Since taking ownership of Arc products, Wizeline has become responsible for training the new team members, both from Arc and Wizeline.

In addition to providing the full suite of product evolution services for Arc, Wizeline also helped to onboard and launch four leading media companies as customers on the platform, customizing the environment to meet their needs.

Today, Arc XP continues to depend on Wizeline to stabilize and improve its solutions, leading to continued customer growth. Wizeline and Arc continue to expand their partnership for additional capabilities and geographic markets.

No matter the project or task, Wizeline met our success criteria. For the support team, we focused primarily on the throughput of response, manageable backlogs, and client satisfaction. For professional services, we looked at on-time, on-scope product delivery with a staffing model designed to achieve that. In our newer platform engagements, we are also focused on on-time delivery but with an eye to our company growth projections. Within a week or sprint, we have team velocity KPIs and expectations around quality, and Wizeline has a track record of exceeding them."

Zach Perry

Vice President, Platform Engineering, Arc XP

About Wizeline

Wizeline is a software development and design services company with operations in the U.S., Mexico, Vietnam, Thailand, Australia, and Spain. Wizeline partners with global enterprises and scaling startups to build end-to-end digital products. If you’d like to learn more, please visit www.wizeline.com or check out more case studies.


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