Q&A with Triinu, Verification Product Analyst at TransferWise
I can prioritise my own work and set my own goals. They have to align with my team’s plan, but I can find my own way to get there. Nobody tells me what to do here. I figure things out myself with support from my lead. It can sometimes be challenging, but it’s enjoyable and empowering to work this way.
Why did you join TransferWise?
I was living abroad at the time and had been a customer of TransferWise for years transferring money abroad to pay rent. During my Erasmus year, I didn’t even open a bank account in the country, as it felt much easier to transfer money. When I was looking for jobs, TransferWise popped up.
I realised I knew someone from TransferWise and they told me about the team events and culture. I was still living abroad, but looking to move back home. I was scared of the reverse culture shock of moving back to Tallinn, so when I heard about how international the company was and that I could work in English, I was sold.
Why did you leave your old company?
I was working for a very traditional, hierarchical company in Copenhagen. As analysts, we were sitting in a corner very distanced from the actual product. The job was prepping numbers for the reporting line. You had no say in decisions, and your impact was small. I wanted to go somewhere that people value my ideas, and I can have a real impact.
In a nutshell, what do you do at TransferWise?
I help Engineers and Product Managers to define our vision and prioritisation for our product through data insights, looking for trends and blind spots. I work within the Verification Product team. We focus on the process of onboarding our customers so they can use TransferWise. We’re trying to automate things as much as possible, so our customer journey is faster and more convenient.
What’s the biggest challenge working here?
Autonomous teams are both a strength and a challenge. They allow teams to make their own decisions and move fast, but our teams prioritise their work separately within their planning sessions. Once plans are set, it can be challenging to persuade them to help your team out with something. Often, quite a few teams need to work together when building things, but when all teams have their own priorities, it can be tricky. It’s why our new structure of teams and tribes was set up, to try and create more alignment on priorities.
What’s the most interesting project you’ve worked on?
I find verification interesting as it’s the part of the journey where you get to know the customer. For one of my projects, I built a cost model to understand who pays for what in our verification process, as there are lots of things we outsource. I had to look at all the costs to understand who should pay for what. It took me two months to perfect my model.
Most interesting place you’ve used your TransferWise card?
Guadeloupe – a Carribean island.
What’s your team’s fun tradition?
My team is in Budapest and Tallinn, so whenever we visit either office altogether, we try to do bonding activities. We’re quite active, so far we’ve done curling, a barbeque and we went kayaking together.
What do you love doing outside of work?
I’m in a traditional Estonian choir. I also took part in the Estonian Song Festival, Laulupidu, which is a huge song festival that takes place every 5 years.
Tell us about a time you went out of your way to help a customer
Sometimes when I model data or look for samples from it, I can see if a customer has been through a tough time. For example, when someone’s tried numerous times to verify themselves. If I find a case like this, I take the data and go to the team taking care of it to follow up with the customer. I also always notify engineers about bugs so we can improve our customer experience.
Favourite slack group?
#kyc-data-sharing – it’s a place for anyone to ask questions about verification data. I’m trying to encourage people to add their questions so everyone can interact and learn from these cases. Often people have the same queries, so private messages are not a scalable way to deal with these things.