Lead User Experience Researcher in San Jose at PayPal

Date Posted: 6/14/2018

Job Snapshot

Job Description

Fueled by a fundamental belief that having access to financial services creates opportunity, PayPal (NASDAQ: PYPL) is committed to democratizing financial services and empowering people and businesses to join and thrive in the global economy. Our open digital payments platform gives PayPal’s 237 million active account holders the confidence to connect and transact in new and powerful ways, whether they are online, on a mobile device, in an app, or in person. Through a combination of technological innovation and strategic partnerships, PayPal creates better ways to manage and move money, and offers choice and flexibility when sending payments, paying or getting paid. Available in more than 200 markets around the world, the PayPal platform, including Braintree, Venmo and Xoom enables consumers and merchants to receive money in more than 100 currencies, withdraw funds in 56 currencies and hold balances in their PayPal accounts in 25 currencies.

The User Experience Design (UED) team at PayPal champions user centered design across our organization. Working in partnership with Product and Engineering teams, we build the next generation of financial services products. The User Experience Research (UER) team, working with our Design partners, designs and delivers impactful research that guides our work and brings the voice of the user to all we do.

We are looking to recruit a highly experienced researcher and people manager to join our User Experience Research team in San Jose. You will be a seasoned research leader with a passion for creative and dynamic insights that help teams build better products that ship. You will have a proven track record of designing and delivering a wide range of research projects and programs and be comfortable with traditional and new approaches in recruitment, methodology and reporting. Delivering powerful and impactful research that drives business outcomes will be all in a day’s work.

The Lead Researcher focuses on the Consumer Experience Platform, which is comprised of the paypal.com logged in experience and the PayPal app. Working with your partners, you will have full responsibility for defining and delivering the Consumer Experience Platform’s user experience research roadmap and running the creative and compelling research studies that form it.

Additionally the Lead will manage the UER practice for consumer products. The role will take an overall program view, looking end to end across our product portfolio. With responsibility for four user experience researchers, each covering a consumer product area, you will manage research across all aspects of PayPal’s core business; including onboarding, identity, web and mobile, P2P and consumer financial services.  You will bring the insight and strategic lens that makes connections between these teams and focuses on the customer’s end-to-end experience.

Ultimately, you know you can be an influential leader in our organization and deliver PayPal’s vision to make simple, compelling financial products for all.

This role is based in San Jose, but you should also be comfortable working closely with teammates in other regions and open to travel if projects require it. The position reports to the Director of UX Research – Consumer.


  • Identify key research questions and objectives in partnership with product, design and engineering teams.
  • Design and develop thought provoking research methods and approaches that best meet needs.
  • Identify research and design targets, developing screeners that best support projects, as well as creative recruitment strategies where required.
  • Carry out research projects with highest levels of customer awareness and business/brand reputation.
  • Synthesize/analyze data and findings, developing genuine insights, outputs and frameworks. 
  • Design creative and compelling deliverables, focused on visually telling the story and highlighting important insights.
  • Plan and deliver research programs within budget, timeline and project requirements.
  • Review with colleagues and present work to multiple teams and leaders, across the organization and outside where required.
  • Provide oversight and direction for multiple projects, proactively make connections and find opportunities for teams to work/learn together.
  • Manage a wide range of sometimes conflicting resource needs and think strategically and creatively when it comes to prioritization.
  • Experience working in large corporate environments, understanding business objectives, and be organizationally aware.
  • Able to forge great cross functional relationships, be an expert communicator and have fantastic negotiation skills.
  • Experience defining and setting organizational goals for your team: and will innovate and adjust organizational practices to deliver on objectives.
  • Provide leadership and direction; delivering on the organizational, UED and UER goals, using measurement and metrics where meaningful.
  • Experience managing and developing a senior IC level team; including goal setting, professional development and performance management.
  • In depth knowledge of UER and UED and the ability to link design and customer needs, within the context of our business.
  • Proactively worked to advance the standing of research and design within a company or corporate environment.
  • Worked in a strategic and transformational leadership role and be confident actively molding culture.
  • You will also be a powerful presenter, communicator and influencer, with an understanding of the bigger picture, including product and business needs.  You will deliver work with energy and passion, and understand the value of strong, clear, visual outputs and deliverables.


  • 10+ years experience in user experience research and design; across companies or fields an advantage.
  • Bachelors and/or Master’s Degree in the study of user experience, design, research or related fields; for example Design, Information Architecture, Human Factors/HCI, Psychology, Cognitive Sciences OR alternative equivalent project/portfolio experience. 
  • People leadership experience; resource and time management, guidance and training, professional development and performance management.
  • Experience across products and platforms and financial services; track record of research that has informed and influenced real product.
  • Excellent communication, presentation and interpersonal skills; a team player and a strong partner.
  • Practical understanding of traditional and new research and recruitment methods, UX methodology and design thinking.
  • Ability to influence and guide others on the value and importance of user centered thinking and research.
  • A thorough understanding of the bigger picture; user context, product lifecycle, key channels, platforms and competitor experiences etc.

We're a purpose-driven company whose beliefs are the foundation for how we conduct business every day. We hold ourselves to our One Team Behaviors which demand that we hold the highest ethical standards, to empower an open and diverse workplace, and strive to treat everyone who is touched by our business with dignity and respect. Our employees challenge the status quo, ask questions, and find solutions. We want to break down barriers to financial empowerment. Join us as we change the way the world defines financial freedom.

PayPal provides equal employment opportunity (EEO) to all persons regardless of age, color, national origin, citizenship status, physical or mental disability, race, religion, creed, gender, sex, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity and/or expression, genetic information, marital status, status with regard to public assistance, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local law. In addition, PayPal will provide reasonable accommodations for qualified individuals with disabilities.



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