Meet the Team: Native Apps
In today's Meet the Team, we sit down with the Product Manager, Designer, and Engineers behind our iOS and Android apps.
Can you please give us a brief summary of what your job entails?
Sarah, Product Manager - A product manager does a little bit of everything. I set the vision and the roadmap: what we are going to build and in what priority. I then figure out what the customer’s needs are, why we should work on something, what metrics we should measure, and what we should learn. I also drive the defining of our OKRs and work with the rest of the team to figure out the how: how does it solve a user’s problem, how does it function & look, and how do we actually build it? Finally, I'm the champion of the team to the rest of the organization, the first point of contact...and whatever else is needed!
Guilherme, Android Engineer - I'm responsible for implementing and maintaining features on both the customer and supplier app, consulting on everything Android. And, because our team has a strong product focus and sense of ownership, everyone is partly a product manager. So, we all participate in things like brainstorms, building roadmaps, and defining OKRs and metrics.
Jacqueline, Product Designer - I take care of the design process from end-to-end through blue sky concepts, usability research, experiments, and data-driven iterative design. I work closely with the team to map out concepts we want to tackle, involving everyone early and often. I also meet with Product Designers on other mission teams to share our projects, provide feedback to one another, and maintain alignment between our respective teams.
Javier, Backend Engineer - I provide support for both the iOS and the Android developers. I drive the implementation of the API and define how the different endpoints' requests and payloads look.
What does an average day on the Native Apps team look like?
Guilherme - When I arrive in the morning there's usually someone singing (probably Alessio). We then start the day with our daily standup. Afterward, we update our physical board, align on anything that needs clarification, and start working to provide our customers a seamless in-app experience.
Javier - Normally I have a meeting or two about projects I'm working on or an interview with a prospective teammate. In between coding and meetings, there are people singing (definitely Alessio), jokes, philosophical discussions, and talks about sports, history, or cinema.
What are the principles your mission team lives by?
Bruno, Backend Engineer - Our mission is to create a personal companion that helps travelers discover, access, and experience the best things to do in their destination. We love putting ourselves in our customers' shoes and learning how we can improve their trips by offering amazing features through our iOS and Android apps.
Fábio, iOS Engineer - As a travel app living in our users' most personal device, we have the unique opportunity to change the way customers relate to their trips. We believe our customers download our app with 2 goals: to cure the chaos of their trips and to be delighted. Guided by these goals, we live by the principle that we can provide our customers with the best experience by getting out of the way and delighting them whenever we can.
What is the most challenging aspect of your role?
Alessio, iOS Engineer - Each person can own a feature or a whole project and drive it through to completion, which is a perk and a challenge. It’s challenging when the project is not only cross-platform, but also involves external teams because then I have to consider everyone's availability, skill set, and communication style. But in the end, it is extremely rewarding to see the final result live in the hands of our customers.
Fábio - There are many things one could be doing as an iOS engineer at GetYourGuide, so picking the next one is a constant exercise of focus and prioritization. Since we’re involved in many phases of product development on such an interesting product, many different and exciting opportunities are presented to us.
Sarah - GetYourGuide is growing so fast; it’s a fun challenge to keep up with who does what, who to reach out to, how everything is working together, and what new things are being built. My most recent companies were <50 people, and here we just broke 400! At the same time, it doesn’t feel that big, we can still move quickly to get things done.
What is the most rewarding aspect of your role?
Bruno - The most rewarding thing for me is to see my lines of codes transformed into features and tools that make a difference in traveler's lives.
Jacqueline - Similar to Bruno, it is rewarding to see the impact of my work. I’m able to contribute to the company’s longer-term visions and have the freedom to innovate with fresh and cool ideas, harnessing mobile technologies to continuously bring the app to the next level. There’s a huge sense of ownership and autonomy here, which is highly empowering and ensures whatever I’m working on is both engaging and purposeful.
Tell us about a recent learning or “Aha” moment.
Alessio - My biggest learning in this team is that communication is more effective if there is trust between team members. Trust can be built in different ways, but honest and constant feedback remains a very fundamental ingredient. This describes the reality in our team culture, and everything we accomplish is directly related to it.
Javier - This week I had one of these moments when I realized there was no one really leading one part of a project and that I could help there. We are growing fast and there are so many things to do! We can never assume someone else is owning a project; we need to ask questions and take ownership when possible.
Sarah - A few months ago, we were set on one design, and then user testing feedback completely threw it out the window. It’s good to constantly be humbled that we can do better.
What advice would you have for someone who would like to work on the Native Apps team at GetYourGuide?
Sarah - The team is data-driven and passionate about helping customers. Everyone also loves being involved -- this isn’t old school waterfall where I tell the devs what to do and they wait to do it. We are thrilled to be expanding the team and are looking forward to finding more product-driven folks to help us build some exciting things
Bruno - If you have a strong passion for helping customers, then this is the place for you! We focus on customers but don't lose the business side of things. Here you'll be given ownership from the beginning, which presents a terrific opportunity for personal and professional growth.
Jacqueline - You should consider this team if you love traveling and want to get your hands dirty uncovering ways to elevate the experience for travelers in-destination. We’re constantly working on ways to make traveling both more effortless and exciting for our users, tackling common problems in the travel space that we’ve all experienced before.
What is your favorite thing about working at GetYourGuide?
Guilherme - I know it sounds cliché, but for sure it’s the people. Working in such a diverse environment with employees from all over the world and with different backgrounds makes every day exciting and full of surprises.
Sarah - I love being surrounded by people of 52+ nationalities. I learn something new every day from someone, not just on a career or skill level, but on a personal and cultural level as well.
Javier - In the same vein, my favorite thing is how much I learn from my colleagues. I'm surrounded by intelligent people who show me new technologies or tools, better ways to design architectures, how to improve processes, and even how to box! (thanks Sarah, the killing machine).
Alessio - For me, it’s definitely the company culture. It’s inspiring to see so much commitment and involvement from all the teams. Sometimes we fail, but no matter what, the general attitude is always to move forward.
Fábio - I agree with Alessio, the culture is what I admire the most at GetYourGuide. It’s not only that I personally identify with our core values, but I actually see employees promoting and embodying these values. One thing I wanted to learn when I joined GetYourGuide was how a company in a growth phase can still maintain its culture. 3.5 years later, I believe GetYourGuide is nailing it!