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Case study: Spotify

Five year trusted partnership empowers Spotify’s Creator Marketplace

A partnership of innovation


Spotify is the world's largest music streaming service provider with over 551 million monthly active users, including 220 million paying subscribers, as of June 2023. They're also building the world's premiere audio network all while empowering creators and connecting fans. Spotify also focuses on using technical innovation to solve scaling problems — the company's earliest developers were pioneers in torrent technology and used distributed file delivery as the foundation for streaming music on-demand. 


Since 2018, Thoughtworks has been proudly partnering with Spotify through various projects that power the Spotify marketplace, helping to build a consistent and reliable enterprise-grade platform. Both organizations align on our mutually shared values, from a strong passion for technological innovation to DEI initiatives, which has generated a powerful synergy and partnership that's yielded impactful results.


Works of progress


Thoughtworks technologists embedded themselves throughout Spotify to further their missions for the overall goal of Music Product. To help them have an extraordinary impact on the industry, we introduced new technology standards and ways of working across the organization. This included employing evolutionary architecture, agile principles and microservices best practices. We took an experimental approach to delivery, leveraging evidence obtained from metrics and A/B tests to prove feature value. 


Here are some of the ways we've helped Spotify over our partnership.

Helping artists and their teams get assistance faster

We worked together to redesign the Spotify for Artists Help Center, which included adding search functionality and refreshing the information architecture, using Elasticsearch, Next.js and Contentful underneath. In addition, the final product incorporates deep tracking so the support team can optimize the information presented on the main help page while continually learning how to serve artists and their teams better.

Visual representation of Spotify localization on computer screen
Visual representation of Spotify localization on computer screen

Expanding the reach of artists

Localizing content is essential for decreasing the barrier for potential new users and creators globally. To address this, we created a localization platform for emails, home cards, logged-in and logged-out experiences and other product areas.

Visual representation of Spotify modular landing page system on computer screen
Visual representation of Spotify modular landing page system on computer screen

Self-service content workflow

Spotify's marketing team needed a way to release changes to their marketing material quickly and without too much developer overhead. Previously, agencies were making bespoke landing pages that required developer input. The joint team created a modular landing page system using Next.js, Typescript and Contentful, which empowers the marketing team to design and release landing pages autonomously.

Visual representation of Spotify analytics and data on computer screen
Visual representation of Spotify analytics and data on computer screen

Democratizing data for artist analytics products

Key to the Spotify for Artists' application is the ability for artists to see metrics and analytics on their content and releases so they can make informed decisions. An event capture framework and data pipelines processing considerable datasets powers the decision-making process. Thoughtworks were part of a squad whose mission is to make it easier for teams building various parts of the artist experience to tap into datasets they need, instead of building their own datasets, to streamline the overall development process. Utilizing Scio (Spotify's open-source data stream API), Google Cloud Dataflow, BigQuery and others, we partnered on scaling this squad into a Platform Pillar of the Music Product organization.

I have appreciated having Thoughtworks as an active partner for the past few years. The expertise and collaboration of the empowered engineers that they have embedded in our team has not only helped us become a faster and more agile delivery organization, but has enabled us to build better products, improve our technical foundation and drive positive outcomes for artists and their teams
Patrick Lambert
Director of Engineering, Spotify

Improving developer effectiveness with Backstage


Thoughtworks and Spotify have partnered to implement Backstage at numerous organizations, from startups to Fortune 50 companies. Backstage is an open platform for building developer portals, created at Spotify, donated to the Cloud Native Computing Foundation and maintained by a worldwide community of contributors. At its core, Backstage is helping create environments where developers can build useful software for their users as effectively as possible. 


When implementing Backstage, we assist in standing up and customizing the portal for the client's context and holistically transform developer effectiveness. Our work often includes improving capabilities such as the CD pipeline, self-service infrastructure and observability. We also hold ourselves accountable by measuring metrics such as "time to launch a microservice" and "time to productivity for a new hire." Finally, we work with the client developer experience team to create an incremental adoption program across the organization.

The future looks even brighter

We're proud of the extraordinary impact Spotify and Thoughtworks have delivered in this partnership so far. The innovations we've created together are helping scale their Music Platform and allowing them to focus on becoming better, faster and more productive, thanks to new working methods across a globally distributed workforce. 


We believe our partnership is just getting started. As Backstage continues to grow in adoption, our collaboration will markedly improve the experience of developers at companies of all shapes and sizes across the industry. We've also started working on bringing better carbon usage visibility to Backstage. Even better, we know we'll continue to benefit from one another through our passion for technology, innovation and the planet. And to us, that's music to our ears.

Looking for a long-haul type of tech partner?