Partnering for Mobile QA Success – Gracenote

Database of music and video metadata finds scalable mobile QA

Interviewer: Thanks a lot, Paul, for taking the time to talk to us. Paul Yates is the Senior Director of QA at Gracenote and we’ll be talking to him about some feedback about Apexon services. So, the first question is about Gracenote. What are your solutions and products all about? And how do you stand in the industry?

Paul Yates: So, Gracenote is basically all about media metadata. Over the last year we’ve kind of expanded our market into video metadata and electronic program guide metadata. So, not only do we focus on some of the legacy products we have to do with music – track ID and album ID – we’re now looking at matching TV program metadata for some of our industry customers. So it’s all about anything to do with media metadata. That can be album art for an album. That can be detailed descriptions of TV programs. That can be actors in the TV programs – biographies of actors – it’s the whole arena.

Interviewer: Got you and as a Senior Director of QA, what are your objectives?

Paul Yates: My objectives are to expand QA into areas we weren’t exposed to previously. Quite a lot of back-end systems we’re now getting involved with, because as our products become more diverse we have to concentrate more on the back-end and the engine of the data delivery systems driving the service.

Interviewer: And what functions does Apexon support you on?

Paul Yates: So, Apexon supports us with our external contractors. We have a number of internal QA engineers but we still have quite a considerable number of external contractors, which gives us quite a flexible workforce.

Interviewer: And what has been your experience with Apexon, personally?

Paul Yates: Our contractors are performing quite well. You guys are usually very good at giving us feedback. Any issues we’ve had in the past or continue to have, you respond very well. That’s what I’ve been looking for continuing forward.

Interviewer: Okay. Are there any specific quantifiable metrics that you can assign to our partnership?

Paul Yates: I can’t do a comparison, as I’ve said, because I wasn’t here before, but I think the operational cost of QA is lower when we’re working in a relationship like this and obviously we want to maintain the effectiveness. I know that’s a fine balance but I think at the moment we’re achieving that balance. The adjectives I’d use to describe Apexon would be cost-effectiveness, dedication, and responsiveness. Honestly we’ve had some issues with offshore resources, but you guys have been very good at responding to those. I’m trying to get a good action plan in place to resolve any issues we have. That’s a good experience.

Interviewer: Okay. And feedback for our team – do you have any?

Paul Yates: I’d say keep up the communication because usually problems occur when there’s a lack of communication. We are a demanding customer, but it’s my job to be demanding.

Interviewer: Would you recommend Apexon to your other peers?

Paul Yates: Yes, I think so.

Interviewer: Thank you, Paul, for talking to us.