Pangea’s engineering team recently spent an insightful week working from our office in Mexico City. For some, it was their first time in Mexico; for others, they were visiting home. Nevertheless, it was a learning experience for all!
With offices in Chicago and Mexico City, the Pangea team has a unique opportunity to see the customer experience both from the sending and receiving end of the process. It’s crucial for us to understand how our customers interact with the product, not only so we can streamline the experience, but also so we can see just how real lives are impacted by the money sent through the Pangea Money Transfer app.
“It filled a gap for us,” said VP of Engineering Omar Khudeira, who was visiting Mexico for the first time. “Our product is not just about senders; it’s about receivers, too.”
Other team members agreed. Visiting the Mexico City bank branches was a learning experience, even for Software Engineer Arturo Leon, who grew up in Guadalajara. “I never noticed that we have many bank branches and that the lines are crazy on paydays,” he said. Arturo uses the Pangea app to send money to his mom in Guadalajara by direct deposit, and he found it surprising how many people opt to wait in long lines instead of getting the money deposited directly in their bank accounts.
For Pangea’s DevOps Engineer Joseph Chiocchi, it was his first time in Mexico, and he discovered that the banks in Mexico are run a little differently—and have incredibly strict ID policies. Our advice to customers: If you’re sending money for cash pickup in Mexico, make sure your receiver brings an official ID and transfer code to the correct location!
These observations and more helped the Pangea team gain a new understanding of the value of the dollar for our customers in Mexico. They’ve also returned to Chicago with ideas for future solutions. For example, the Pangea mobile transfer app already helps our customers in the United States avoid long lines to send money to Mexico. With our direct deposit options, the Pangea customers receiving the funds can potentially avoid those long lines, too—something Arturo and his mother know firsthand.
The team also managed to see some of the sights, from the Museo Nacional de Antropología to the Chapultepec Zoo. (“I went to Mexico City to see a panda!” joked Quality Assurance Lead Samer Akash.)
An overall team favorite was the Teotihuacán tour. Even there, on top of a pyramid, Arturo still pulled out his laptop to make sure the app was running smoothly. The Internet signal wasn’t great, but he made sure there were no current tech issues for Pangea customers—whether they were sending or receiving a money transfer.
Overall, this was a fantastic opportunity for the engineers to experience firsthand the lives of the people we serve and will help them create better products for our customers.