MediaCell is a an electronic audience measurement system, developed over several years by Ipsos.
Using cutting edge technology, MediaCell enables Ipsos to passively measure consumers’ cross-media consumption and exposure to advertising.
Initially developed for television and radio audience measurement, MediaCell is now active in multiple countries, giving broadcasters invaluable insights about how consumers behave.
Ipsos wished to build a production-ready backend system for measuring and managing the vast amounts of data collected from recruited panels of people. It also needed to facilitate the management of panel members to ensure they complied with minimum expected behaviour.
The system was to be built from scratch.
In 2012, IDM was commissioned to develop the MediaCell Backend Production System (MBPS) and New Verve Consulting was recruited by IDM as project managers.
New Verve Consulting was asked to manage the development of MBPS beginning-to-end. After successful completion of a design phase, development schedules were aggressive and challenges were substantial:
- a bespoke system was to be built from the ground up
- a substantial budget had to be managed tightly
- a distributed team of over 10 software developers had to coordinated
- a wide range of stakeholders had to be satisfied
- a production-ready system had to be ready within 5 months
MBPS was developed iteratively by applying the Rational Unified Process (RUP) framework.
New Verve Consulting worked with IDM during the design phase to finalize requirements and design the architecture of the system. The implementation phase was then split into 3 key phases, each of which was broken into further smaller cycles following the requirements/analysis/implementation/test/delivery model.
Collaboration was crucial for the project, especially given its distributed nature and the volume of work to be achieved in a short amount of time. This is why tools such as the following proved to be invaluable for the team:
- Google Hangouts and GoToMeeting for daily ‘standups’ with the developers and client
- Jira Software (server) for planning and managing work
- Confluence (server) for capturing requirements, specifications, meeting minutes, and all other project documentation
- Fisheye/Crucible for Git code review and insights
We used an extensive range of Atlassian add-ons, including Balsamiq for designing UI mockups, Gliffy for process diagrams, and Tempo Timesheets for tracking logged time.
Applying RUP and using cloud-based collaborative tools really gave us an edge and helped us to deliver a functional piece of software within budget and on time in June 2012. Since then, MediaCell has gone from strength to strength and is now in production across multiple panels in multiple countries.
Ipsos continued to invest in the product year-on-year, and we’re really proud to say that we continue to manage development and maintenance of MBPS today!
Technologies: Jira Software, Confluence, Fisheye, Crucible, Balsamiq, Gliffy, Tempo
we oversaw the design and development of a brand new software product in just 5 months.
1000+ man days
over 1000 man days of work were required to build a production-ready MBPS from the ground up.
10+ software developers
we managed a distributed team of developers using Jira, Confluence, and Google Hangouts.
we continue to manage the development and maintenance of MBPS today, 5 years after go-live.
MBPS has been in production in the UK, the Netherlands, Sweden, Italy, Kenya, Mexico, UAE, and New Zealand.
2500+ man days
over 2500 man days of work have evolved MBPS to where it is today.
"I worked uninterruptedly with New Verve Consulting since 2012 to set up the Ipsos production system for audience measurement. The role of New Verve has been vital in keeping such a large project under control and also I appreciated the suggestions to solve some major critical road blocks"- Marco Barbaccia,
Global Technical & Operations Director, MediaCell
"I was introduced to New Verve Consulting in 2013 and they have been a key component in the management of a large scale project. They are great at keeping projects aligned to scope/time and if there are any project risks they highlight these with possible mitigation options in a timely manner."- Shadin Barman, Project Director, MediaCell