SumAll Launches New Integration Feature Using GitHub API

Mark Boyd
Jun. 12 2014, 07:44AM EDT

API aggregation service SumAll has released a new GitHub API integration allowing businesses to track team productivity and better monitor the full bug tracking development lifecycle. The new integration is a clear example of the value that aggregating various APIs into one visual data layer can bring to the enterprise and to small business.

SumAll is an API aggregation service that provides a range of integrations with social media and e-commerce tools. This allows business customers to create a dashboard that shows comparable metrics across a range of omni-channel sources.

“We have a quarter of a million businesses using us right now, we are heading into a million, and we will always offer their data to them back to them for free,” CEO Dane Atkinson told ProgrammableWeb. “Our intent is to get to every piece of data out there.”

The new integration using GitHub’s API is a turning point for the data aggregation service, bringing in metrics around team capabilities and performance to the feature list.

“We have privately released the Github API integration to segments of our customers, and we are now opening it up to our international customers. We have had to get a good population of beta customers to test our analytics and make sure our data has quality to it,” says Atkinson.

The Productivity Value of Using Analytics from API Sources

To date, the majority of SumAll’s integrations have focused on pulling social media metrics alongside e-commerce sales data to show the impact of various marketing and communication strategies. The new integration builds out SumAll’s focus to providing social analytics from a wider variety of sources in order to add value to a business’ operations.

A 2012 report on social collaboration tools in the enterprise shows the range of social technologies available for use:

ABOVE: Social technologies available for the enterprise, from McKinsey Global Institute

At the center of using these technologies is ‘social analytics’: the very value-add that SumAll is focusing on providing. They believe that by being able to pull a brand’s data from a range of social media and cloud collaboration tools, they can package these analytics back to the business in a way that provides valuable insight.

McKinsey sees social technologies as creating 10 types of productivity benefits in the enterprise:

ABOVE: Productivity benefits from using social technologies from McKinsey Global Institute, with key benefits being addressed by SumAll highlighted by ProgrammableWeb (see text explanation below)

So far, SumAll have been focusing on functions like deriving customer insights, leveraging social to forecast and monitor trends, and linking social media to social commerce channels (in the above image, these productivity benefits are circled in pink).

“We have customers that have hundreds of connections,” says Atkinson. “We can connect multiple accounts, and format everything to the one time schedule, so you can look at traffic data, social, sales, etc all in sync so if there is a pattern emerging, it is much easier to identify.

“It is really interesting when you can link disparate data services. How social is driving traffic is pretty easy to understand and see, but how social is driving revenue is much more difficult. With SumAll, its possible to calculate your attribution much better.

“We figure there is value in any data, so we are trying to address the biggest pain points right off the bat. When you can combine revenue and social and traffic you get a lot of powerful information.”

Integrating with the new GitHub API now helps SumAll extend its services to show how social technologies can improve business collaboration and make better use of teams (the productivity benefits circled in green in the above diagram).

Use Cases for the GitHub API Integration Feature

Atkinson sees the new GitHub API aggregation as a key turning point in how SumAll is acquiring data via API to feed back to their business customers. “GitHub is awesome to start with, so we are really happy to integrate with them.

“When you can track Zendesk to GitHub — all the way through the bug lifecycle — there are definitely clusters of information that are useful to monitor and review.

“Amongst our beta customers, there has been a lot of use in seeing how responses to the support desk request marry up with GitHub development commits.”
 

“There are a lot of different ways that high level collaboration is a good indication of strong team leaders, not only is it a productive coding environment, but you can really see who is engaged in your team and who is actively helping other folks. It gives you an indication of who is really great at stimulating the organization, and if followers, commits, or numbers drop, that is a great way to determine issues in your team, or when morality or stress is impacting a team, or when a team is really hitting its stride.”

Atkinson sees the key potential SumAll customer segments who may make use of the new feature as being involved hands-on in managing development teams, but the data could also provide insights into how supportive a business is in fostering a positive environment for its development team. “We know there are a lot of owner-operators and heads of engineering using it, but I would give credit to any HR director that uses this data to take the temperature of their company.

SumAll hopes that in future, as more customers make use of the integration, they can provide a deeper, aggregated analysis of the key characteristics in fostering team productivity. Aggregated data can also be packaged up in a way to help customers compare themselves with their industry peers via a series of benchmarks.

“Once we have 10,000 GitHub integrations, we will be able to give aggregated information back to your company, that is where we think we could add a lot of value. Our data grows 40% month over month. Our intent is to give that data back as insights, but that is not as easy as it sounds: our customers are saying, ‘I don’t need to compare myself with Google, I need to compare myself with other 5 person startups.’”

This future plan of monetizing off API aggregation by aggregating the data behind it means that the SumAll service is free for anyone to use. “It will be a dark day when we start charging for your own data,” says Atkinson. The Github API integration is available to all customers now.

Mark Boyd is a ProgrammableWeb writer covering breaking news, API business strategies and models, open data, and smart cities. I can be contacted via email, on Twitter, or on Google+.

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