The interesting thing about developing products is that you could end up using them as a consumer. So I try to make our day-to-day financial lives a little easier. Plus I can easily explain to my family and friends what I do all day. When they pay for a sandwich by holding their bank card against a payment terminal, I can tell them that I spend my days working on contactless and mobile payments.
I want to be involved in the community not only at the office, but in my free time too
Jos van de Kerkhof Senior Productmanager Payments
What do customers want?
I’m responsible for the strategy and development of my products, so it’s my job to research what customers want and how we can respond to their needs profitably. Various specialists then translate that information into a practical product. Together, we make life a lot easier for everybody. The world of contactless and mobile payment is always changing. The telephone has become an increasingly important channel, for making payments, too. Studies show that people more readily reach for their mobile phone than their wallet when leaving the house. Paying with your mobile phone is one thing, but the related services are also really interesting. Just think about loyalty programmes that make cards unnecessary. It’s easy to save data these days, so paper receipts will soon be a thing of the past.
Translating the differences
To keep abreast of the latest developments and trends, I follow various news sources, such as Twitter, opinion leaders, blogs and domestic and foreign news programmes. You can see differences between countries in terms of behaviour and technical specifications. It’s my job to translate these differences to the Dutch market. Outside the office, too, I watch how people make payments. If I see somebody buying a train ticket by contactless payment, I’ll talk to them . What do they think of it, and what could be improved? I learn from these talks, regardless of how small the ‘research’ is.
A better life
I want to be involved in the community not only at the office, but in my free time too. So I’ve signed up to be a budget coach to assist people who need help with their finances. For example, I help people who are in a debt rescheduling programme get their paperwork in order. I enjoy helping others with their problems. In a job like mine, it’s the least I can do.