How Progressive Expert Consulting Implements Cordoniq
Business Consulting Service to Government and Enterprise Companies
How a corporate consulting company built a powerful and secure private training and distance learning platform experience to support thousands of government contract clients with specialized training and security needs. Across 54 countries and in 95 languages, PEC delivers unparalleled video collaboration and training.
Progressive Expert Consulting, Inc. (PEC) was founded in 1987 as a training and technology company. PEC pioneered concepts to facilitate both synchronous & asynchronous training by providing the full capability of in-person learning, all within a virtual setting. Built upon one of PEC’s core competencies, their network infrastructure supports the demands of fully virtual, synchronous language and culture training environments.
In 2003, the company started working with the Department of Defense and developed SOFTS – the Special Operations Forces Teletraining System for the Department of Defense, which is currently operating as the longest functioning Virtual School in the Department of Defense. They also serve many commercial clients in the virtual language learning space, with Main Street Virtual Learning (MSVL), their commercial arm for non-government projects.
Security and Control
“We needed a secure collaboration platform solution that we could control and would also meet our stringent requirements for military-grade security. It has to be private, so we can choose how and where to install any components as well as pass the critical encryption requirements for sensitive operations.”
Tim Feng, COO
In 2013, the company began supporting the Air Force eMentor Language Sustainment Classes, which is the instructional training component of the Language Enabled Airmen Program (LEAP). Because many of PEC’s users are in sensitive government roles where security requirements are paramount, public products in consumer market video conferencing were not a viable or safe solution for their customers. Security, privacy and control in the virtual learning environment for training employees in active military and government institutions are critical components in their virtual environment.
Over the past 20 years, the company has provided over 8,750 classes to approximately 19,500 students, with instruction in 95 languages across 54 countries around the world.
With more than 600,000 hours of virtual learning provided, the company understands how to deliver private, secure and effective instruction to their clients; as high resolution, lip-synced video and audio classes must be achieved for specialized online training in oral and written language learning.
“Our solution is a fully integrated video collaboration platform, conceived and built with synchronous online training in mind. Rather than trying to marry two disparate software packages together, we built our platform from the ground up to address the unique needs represented by a live, online synchronous training environment. We also built our platform specifically to handle the needs represented in distance learning education,”
Tim Feng, COO.
PEC leadership goes on to say, “We needed a secure collaboration platform solution that we could control and would also meet our stringent requirements for military-grade security. It has to be private, so we can choose how and where to install any components as well as pass the critical encryption requirements for sensitive operations.”
After reviewing various video conferencing cloud products on the market, there were none that met PEC’s strict requirements. Dan Feng, CTO states, “Because these products are standalone applications with a constrained API, the scope of interoperability with existing training platforms is narrow.”
These privacy, security and control parameters led PEC to choose the Cordoniq video collaboration platform as their solution provider. For their team, the lack of control over their users’ virtual training experience offered by other video products was the critical factor that led the company to their choice. Utilizing the Cordoniq concierge services with very specific secure features and tools was paramount to the product offering for PEC’s clientele.
PEC developed their own learning management system (LMS) called the Collaborative Learning Environment (CLE) and utilized the Cordoniq platform to provide a cohesive, live, learning experience for their instructors and students. This functionality and ease-of-use also required a level of stringent internal controls.
In order to accomplish their complete distance learning and training program offering, PEC chose the Cordoniq video collaboration platform as their solution because they could deliver this complete control. Not merely a group of APIs, but the ability to control everything for the user – from top level video and audio controls, security of the meeting rooms, right down to the control of devices utilized on each workstation.
The Cordoniq video collaboration platform creates resiliency and scalability for PEC’s entire video education and training program. Non-cloud, on-premises scalability is critically important for the company. The ability to manage all aspects of the meeting room; for example, to add or delete chat capability on the fly in the live collaboration environment was a required function. For their government users with protected and confidential identities, PEC needed the ability to run the whole operation on their own infrastructure.
“Our ability to interact with students and instructors who are training in a live conference, from both inside and outside of the CLE application experience, is a critical element of learning success,” says Tim Feng.
For PEC’s training consulting management solution, not only the video and audio experience, but also sensitive content such as shared documents and files, along with recordings of conferences, absolutely cannot stream unencrypted over the public internet or be stored in uncontrolled cloud data centers. Because Cordoniq offers the ability to leverage TLS 1.3 and all current ciphers for all their end-to-end communications over TCP, as well as true end-to-end encryption – not merely key-based encryption – PEC has complete control over their sensitive data including uploading and storing video collaboration training recordings. When integrated effectively, this encryption does not have a negative impact on performance even when running on low-end devices and delivering dozens of video streams. PEC, Inc. can use their own domains, SSL certificates and set their public-key encryption levels to completely leverage controls over their own information.
“We had to have control over the location of content, how it is secured, stored and retrieved. Most products we looked at would stream over the internet to their target servers, with very little or no controls. They also would not allow you to control where your sensitive content and recordings were stored,” says Dan Feng.
Tools for The Virtual Training in Education Environment
It is all about engaging learners in a secure and live environment so that they can train without the distraction of technology. The video collaboration environment created by the Cordoniq platform provides all the tools needed. Chat support in over 70 languages, whiteboarding, markup and annotation tools for documents, web sharing, screen and document sharing, all contribute to the ease and flow of the video collaboration training environment offered by PEC in order to serve thousands of their government training clients.
“Inside the distance learning environment, the annotation and whiteboarding tools must be fluid and robust so that attendees can express their skills and interact with the instructor in an effective manner. We need tools that are focused on training, which general purpose video conferencing does not provide. We need breakout rooms that are flexible and under our control, multi-page document sharing with markup, the ability to share files and media; all the tools required for a fluid video meeting experience,” says Tim Feng.
For PEC, the ability to train in a virtual collaboration environment safely, privately and with complete control over the learning environment has been paramount to their continued success.
PEC, Inc. has positioned themselves as a leader in consulting management for specialized virtual training by leveraging the Cordoniq video collaboration solution and concierge services. With their robust offerings, Tim states,” PEC can provide a complete, scalable and turnkey solution to their clients, that includes both the virtual meeting and class collaboration infrastructure as well as the language training instruction component in a completely controlled and secure environment.”
PEC was founded in 1987 as an industrial training company and became incorporated in 1990 as it was enhanced with talents in the field of system integration. PEC envisioned a service that gives people and organizations the tools needed to survive and progress in an increasingly high-tech world.
The company calls this service ‘invisible technology”. They strongly believe intuitive technology should be applied to practices and projects without the complications typically associated with it and should be rendered invisible to the user. Since their formation, PEC has participated in a host of projects for their clientele that have brought this idea to life. From virtual language and culture training programs to telemedicine, PEC has brought their idea to fruition.
PEC SUCCESS STATS
Cordoniq is the secure, enterprise video collaboration platform offering ‘concierge’ custom open standards-based API integration for just about anything in an enterprise tech stack. Whatever apps an organization utilizes, they integrate them into a single, seamless, custom-branded video collaboration solution that delivers a premium, secure conference experience to its clients.
Trusted by the Department of Defense, the Pentagon, Special Operations Forces, and the National Guard, professional services organizations can rely on Cordoniq to provide any level of video conferencing security they need.