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How A.Team Helped McGraw Hill Build the 'TikTok for Studying'

NEW YORK, Jan. 24, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- Leading global education company McGraw Hill recently launched Sharpen™, a first-of-its-kind mobile app that reinvents studying for the social media age. Built with the support of the top consumer tech builders in A.Team's network, the app has been dubbed 'TikTok for Studying' by early student adopters.

Sharpen provides a continuous feed of bite-sized videos that mimics the feel of TikTok or Instagram Reels, complimented by swipeable study tools and gamified quizzes to help students learn. It's the latest example of McGraw Hill's ongoing digital transformation and innovation.

McGraw Hill came to A.Team in the spring of 2021 with the concept for Sharpen, wanting a partner that shared its philosophy toward innovation and iterative product development. McGraw Hill found that with A.Team, which built a world-class product team with consumer tech expertise to complement McGraw Hill's internal mastery of e-learning, enhancing the organization's capabilities to build breakthrough consumer tech.

"Working with A.Team was a collaborative and invaluable experience," said Justin Singh, McGraw Hill's Chief Strategy & Transformation Officer. "From the start, A.Team enabled us to prototype and iterate more efficiently. Then ultimately, at the product development stage, they gave us the agility to quickly scale up and down with the resources needed to get to market sooner."

A.Team and McGraw Hill started with a small, three-person team to build a prototype to test with students. Following an overwhelmingly positive response, McGraw Hill's A.Team grew to a team of eight product builders as it built the MVP, and then to an A.Team of 27 builders—spanning software architects, product managers, mobile developers, and growth marketers—leading up to Sharpen's launch in October 2022. Since then, it's rocketed up the App Store, with a 4.7 rating and over 450 reviews.

"As an independent contractor, I prefer working on missions that I can feel connected to for the long term," said A.Team iOS developer Lyndsey Scott. "This mission with McGraw Hill has been an exciting opportunity to build something from scratch, take ownership over an innovation that I personally felt inspired by, while working alongside other talented builders."

To learn more about how A.Team helped McGraw Hill build different, visit:

About A.Team

A.Team is a team formation platform that enables tech leaders to assemble cloud-based teams to build transformative new products. A.Team is powered by a members-only network of 7,000 of the world's top engineers, product managers, designers, and marketers who come together to work on missions that matter to them alongside teammates they love—with the freedom and flexibility they crave. To date, more than 400 companies, from leading startups to multinational enterprises, have deployed A.Teamers to accelerate product development. For more information, visit

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