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VP, Head of Design - Upwise

Date Posted: Oct 12, 2021

Location: Remote, US, 0 New York, NY, US, 10166

Company: MetLife

MetLife: 
For over 150 years, MetLife has helped generations of customers around the world protect their property, finances, family, and future.  But for us, it's never been enough just to sell somebody an insurance policy.  We have always looked for ways to help people live better, healthier lives. Today, as people's needs are changing faster than ever, we are working harder than ever to transform our business to meet those needs.  

One of our competitive advantages is the relationships we have with our institutional customers, based on the expertise we’ve developed over many years identifying and meeting their needs. Our opportunity is to build on our heritage by extending that trust and long-term commitment to individual workers, creating lifelong relationships and delivering on our promise to help build a more confident future together.

This “Next Horizon” of MetLife’s enterprise strategy is rooted in customer intimacy, informed by data analytics, and enabled by digital capabilities. Financial Wellness and Engagement (FW&E) is a new division created within the U.S. Business to bring this vision to life. Our focus is on deepening our relationships with our customers, both through existing MetLife products and services in our Group Benefits, Retirement & Income Solutions, and Property & Casualty business lines as well as through new, innovative solutions based on emergent workforce needs.  

Key to the Next Horizon strategy is building lifelong relationships with MetLife’s end customers through deep engagement.  FW&E aims to accomplish this by providing highly valuable experiences, delivered through a first of its kind, financial wellness solution, to its customers through a modern digital platform and ecosystem:  UpwiseTM from MetLife is a new kind of app that addresses emotional barriers to financial progress and helps create feel-good habits, one step at a time. At Upwise, we believe managing money can be easy, enjoyable and rewarding when people have solutions that help them get the most out of every dollar, build good habits, and feel optimistic about what their money can do for them. This personalized and empathetic approach to finances will provide Employers with an opportunity to solve the engagement gap across their existing benefit offerings while providing their employees with the tools necessary to make progress in their financial lives.  

 

The Role: 
We are seeking a Head of Design who passionate about our purpose, equipped with the ability to build alignment across multiple stakeholder groups, and the proven ability to execute.   This role will be responsible for building the design function within this new business to support the design and development of the digital-first financial wellness platform.  The platform is currently in soft launch as of August 2021, with a full launch plan in market in early 2022.  It will be the Head of Design’s responsibility to catch the imagination of users (employees), customers (employers) and MetLife.  This role will work in close collaboration with the heads of the Product and Engineering teams.  

The Head of Design will be equally focused on executing the solution design to successfully bring the platform to market while strategically looking ahead to how the solution must evolve to meet the future needs of customers.  As a new function within a new business, fostering a culture where design is critical will be important across stakeholder groups and the newly formed team.   

This role will report to the VP, Upwise Launch and Delivery, and will provide direct leadership across a design team.  The Head of Design will be responsible for taking the business vision and translating it into new experiences that change the way people think about their finances.  
    
The Head of Design will be a thought leader, providing the strategic direction to shape MetLife’s presence in this new and evolving category.  The role will require highly effective relationship building in order to successfully coordinate the complexities of bringing a new business to market.  The successful candidate will have a laser focus on the customer and their needs, they will employ an entrepreneurial mindset, driving towards a unique and differentiated solution.  

 

Key Responsibilities:

  • Design - creative and operational 
  • Close collaborator with the heads of product and engineering
  • Develop and set high standards for UX and design, and implement a structure to ensure cross-functional teams maintain user experience principles and the overall design system 
  • Provide the organization with an outlook and vision on how our experiences can change customer's lives
  • Craft strategies and the delivery of best in class experiences
  • Transform business strategies and customer needs into solutions 
  • Devise growth and optimization strategies for existing experiences
  • Represent the voice of the customer at every touchpoint 
  • Direct management of the design team and oversight of third-party agencies and freelancers 
  • Collaborate closely with partners across Global Brand Marketing on critical brand, positioning, and voice decisions 
  • Leadership and Culture 
  • Lead, mentor and grow a team of product designers, and design researchers by being their champion, setting clear objectives, and providing clear career guidance
  • Create, operationalize, and measure the performance of the design process and organization 
  • Propose new, high-impact service initiatives and align the group around a vision and approach
  • Conceive and lead the organizations creative, product, and impact missions.
  • Promote a culture of test, learn, and experimentation 
  • Develop a culture where change agents are embraced
  • Form a culture where design is seen as an asset and is at the core of business and monetary growth


Candidate Qualifications:

  • 10+ years of digital design experience and leadership 
  • A design portfolio that illustrates strong problem solving, interaction and visual design skills 
  • Experience working with engineers and product managers to drive bold visions and execution
  • Prior experience working in an agile development environment, and in shipping native app experiences 
  • Successful track record in defining the strategic intent, vision and direction and translating that vision into specific business strategies
  • Strong communication skills with the ability to translate the vision to diverse sets of stakeholders
  • Knowledge of the markets, competitors, industry trends, products and distribution methods, specifically the evolving financial wellness space  
  • Prior experience includes mix across agencies, start-ups and larger corporate environments (specifically financial services) is a plus  
  • Proven ability to succeed in a matrixed organization 
  • BA/BS degree in design or related field 


Leadership Competencies: 

  • Thinks Strategically – Sets direction aligned to the company’s strategy, applying external and global perspective to meet local and global needs.
  • Motivates People – Gains people commitment to achieve business objectives through clear communication of the company’s vision and flexing leadership styles to inspire high performance. 
  • Creates Partnerships – Authentically builds trusted relationships and collaborates across global, diverse and multi-functional teams to successfully drive business objectives.
  • Grows Talent – Inclusively and pro-actively develops talent, empowers individuals and manages diverse teams to drive engagement and performance.
  • Models our Values – Creates a culture that promotes the company’s values and standards through role modeling, accountability and ownership of decisions.
  • Focuses on Customers – Promotes customer centricity and ensures focus on creating great customer experiences to achieve competitive advantage.
  • Drives Results – Sets aggressive goals and is accountable for continuously driving improved performance, leading change and ensuring high standards.
     

MetLife:

MetLife, through its subsidiaries and affiliates, is one of the world’s leading financial services companies, providing insurance, annuities, employee benefits and asset management to help its individual and institutional customers navigate their changing world. Founded in 1868, MetLife has operations in more than 40 countries and holds leading market positions in the United States, Japan, Latin America, Asia, Europe and the Middle East.

 

We are one of the largest institutional investors in the U.S. with $642.4 billion of total assets under management as of March 31, 2021. We are ranked #46 on the Fortune 500 list for 2021. In 2020, we were named to the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI) for the fifth year in a row. DJSI is a global index to track the leading sustainability-driven companies. We are proud to have been named to Fortune magazine's 2021 list of the "World's Most Admired Companies." 

       

MetLife is committed to building a purpose-driven and inclusive culture that energizes our people. Our employees work every day to help build a more confident future for people around the world.

 

 

We want to make it simple for all interested and qualified candidates to apply for employment opportunities with MetLife.  For further information about how to request a reasonable accommodation, please click on the Disability Accommodations link below.

 

 

MetLife is a proud Equal Employment Opportunity and Affirmative Action employer dedicated to attracting, retaining, and developing a diverse and inclusive workforce. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment at MetLife without regards to race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions), sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, disability, national origin, marital or domestic/civil partnership status, genetic information, citizenship status, uniformed service member or veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.

 

 

MetLife maintains a drug-free workplace.

 

 

Requisition #: 120754