Senior Director, North America Product Innovation

  • San Francisco, CA, USA
  • Full-time

Company Description

As the world's leader in digital payments technology, Visa's mission is to connect the world through the most creative, reliable and secure payment network - enabling individuals, businesses, and economies to thrive. Our advanced global processing network, VisaNet, provides secure and reliable payments around the world, and is capable of handling more than 65,000 transaction messages a second. The company's dedication to innovation drives the rapid growth of connected commerce on any device, and fuels the dream of a cashless future for everyone, everywhere. As the world moves from analog to digital, Visa is applying our brand, products, people, network and scale to reshape the future of commerce.

At Visa, your individuality fits right in. Working here gives you an opportunity to impact the world, invest in your career growth, and be part of an inclusive and diverse workplace. We are a global team of disruptors, trailblazers, innovators and risk-takers who are helping drive economic growth in even the most remote parts of the world, creatively moving the industry forward, and doing meaningful work that brings financial literacy and digital commerce to millions of unbanked and underserved consumers.

You're an Individual. We're the team for you. Together, let's transform the way the world pays.


Job Description

The Senior Director of North America Product Innovation will be part of the team that helps our clients win in a competitive marketplace by making commerce solutions that are smarter, faster, and safer for their customers. The innovation center is part of a global innovation network that evangelizes Visa’s global point of view on the future of commerce, designs best in class customer-centric experiences, and develops new product solutions to drive industry innovation. We host clients from around the globe and across industries—from financial institutions and merchants to technology partners and government officials—immersing them in customer insights and emerging global trends. The team collaborates with partners to discover, define, and design high-potential new products and services that are market tested and ready for scaled commercialization.  We focus on high-potential business opportunities that can be piloted, have a clearly articulated end user impact, and can accelerate growth for Visa.  As part of a multi-disciplinary team made up of business, design and development, you will blur the lines between business strategy and creativity, helping to design and develop new solutions that are desirable for end-users as well as feasible and financially sustainable for the organization. Projects are derived based on forces shaping new commerce experiences. The successful candidate for this role will be responsible for working across functions (e.g., design, technology, products, etc.) for Visa’s client merchants, issuers, end consumers and partners.  This role reports to the Head of North America Innovation.

The Senior Director will be responsible for leading multiple human centered design projects (from inception through testing) initiated by client needs, market opportunity and/or future signals.   The role requires the person to help define and execute a holistic approach to product design that begins with the customer and rapidly iterates solutions to deliver customer experiences that are simple, powerful, and exceptional.  In addition, he/she will lead teams that bring a structured approach to applied innovation and have the ability to communicate highly complex information to both a technical and non-technical audiences. The team believes in curiosity, creative confidence, experimentation through making, continuous learning, respectful collaboration, inclusion, empathy, resiliency and fun! 

We are a team of creative optimists. Our team of product managers, designers, engineers, strategists, payment enthusiasts, and thought leaders are passionate champions for customer experience.  Lastly, the person should be a “SWAN” – someone who is smart, works hard, ambitious and nice! 

 Essential Functions:

  • Lead partners and interdisciplinary teams of product, design, engineering and payment ecosystem partners in the development of applied innovations, using a digital-first mindset and the contemporary product management techniques of digital native companies (e.g., human centered design, minimum viable product, rapid prototyping, etc)
  • Applies their industry and design thinking experience to lead the business perspective on relevance to Visa, business modeling/case/reason to invest.  Articulates the “Business Design Challenge” at the beginning of the project to ensure potential user and business impacts are relevant and defined early (e.g., what problem are we trying to solve? What impact do we want to have? What are possible solutions? What context and constraints do we need to keep in mind?)
  • Lead the delivery of a range of applied innovation projects that could vary based on user, problem/opportunity defined and/or payments ecosystem partner. 
  • Lead the partnership with design, technology and other product verticals to identify and define the work that should be done to explore, test, refine, and recommend a final solution and that brings a holistic approach to product design that begins with the customer and rapidly iterates solutions to deliver customer experiences that are simple, powerful, and exceptional.  Works with designers + design technologist to make things tangible/real versus theoretical
  • Lead applied product development using human-centered design and lean start-up processes that result in desirability insights and viable product, service or solution recommendations.  Also, distills business, customer, and partner constraints into digestible components for the design and development teams
  • Demonstrate in-depth knowledge of Visa’s capabilities and has the ability to think holistically about the design of a new offering and the implications related to both the customer’s experience as well as the organization’s ability to implement and scale.   This includes working closely with our partners to develop strategies, timelines, and operational models that appropriately consider the organizational needs, aspirations, business realities
  • Articulate the possibility, viability and feasibility of recommendations.  This includes crafting the story of how the design recommendation fits into a company’s overall strategy, the underlying business model, and any implementation risks.
  • Energize and improve the status quo using creativity and intelligent, calculated risks to deliver new products and processes that surpass clients’ expectations, demonstrating new methods, capabilities, and mindsets.
  • Establish compelling business-based reason for change that mobilizes others to adopt new product development process that more effectively and rapidly deliver growth and improve Visa’s competitive differentiation.
  • Embrace opportunity to develop appropriate process/approach based on each project including setting up parameters that feel defined but not overly restrictive


Basic Qualifications

  • 12 years of work experience with a Bachelor’s Degree; 10 years of work experience with an Advanced degree (e.g. Masters/MBA/JD/MD); or a minimum of 5 years of work experience with a PhD

Preferred Qualifications

  • 15-18 years of experience with a Bachelor’s Degree or 12 years of experience with an Advanced Degree (e.g. Masters, MBA, JD, MD or PhD)
  • 3-5 years of strategy consulting experience a plus

  • 13+ years payments industry/fintechs/digital tech experience or similar relevant experience

  • 13+ years product design/development experience, with a strong focus on innovative product development

  • Must have a mindset that embraces creativity, optimism, ambiguity and failing-fast 
  • Comfortable interacting, interviewing and iterating with people through exploration of new concept, prototyping (low and high) and testing

  • Proven ability to work on complex and often ambiguous problems, to drive results

  • Analytical thinker, team oriented, collaborative, diplomatic, and flexible, with excellent presentation skills, including strong oral and writing capabilities

Additional Information

Work Hours:

Incumbent must make themselves available during core business hours. May require occasional meetings outside of core business hours to connect with global partners and clients.

Travel Requirements:

This position requires travel for work 15% of the time

Physical Requirements:

This position will be performed in an office setting.  The position will require the incumbent to sit and stand at a desk, communicate in person and by telephone, frequently operate standard office equipment, such as telephones and computers.

Visa will consider for employment qualified applicants with criminal histories in a manner consistent with EEOC guidelines and applicable local law.

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