Working 50 percent of the time is doable with a strict schedule
Jessica studied and worked abroad for many years before returning to Amsterdam to lead a somewhat calmer life. While her job at ING gives her more stability, it also offers her plenty of challenges. Jessica is Customer Journey Expert in the Excellent Service & Onboarding squad for Private Banking.
Jessica is a very enterprising person who loves travelling; she has moved around a lot and seen much of the world since the age of 18. She did a dual master’s degree in business economics and marketing strategy in the UK and France. She also worked for L’Oréal, before heading off to Bali in search of adventure. She ended up staying there for four years, during which she also launched and built up a surf bikini brand. Soon after her return to Amsterdam she started at ING through the Untapped Talent programme. Ten years ago – when she was employed by an estate agent in a chic neighbourhood of Amsterdam – she and one of her colleagues were hit by a car while they were working. It was an accident with major consequences; she was declared 50 percent medically unfit for work and ended up on young people’s disability benefits.
“I first came into contact with ING and its Untapped Talent programme through a networking event. I was curious to learn more about ING and especially about its agile approach. I was familiar with the methodology because I’d had a lot of contact with Google while doing my degree, but it’s pretty unusual for a bank to choose that way of working. In close consultation with ING I looked at which position suited me best and where I could add value. I’m currently working in the Excellent Service & Onboarding squad for Private Banking. Our common goal is to make the customer journey – relating to payments, savings and online banking – as pleasant as possible for each Private Banking customer. We – the Customer Journey Experts – analyse all the customer touchpoints and localise any areas for improvement. The ultimate aim is for every step in the customer journey to be a ‘wow moment’! Besides that I’m the editor of the Private Banking newsletter, which is ING’s most-read newsletter, and I also take care of customer communication via e-mail, MyING, mobile and social media. I add the most value to my squad in the area of content management, but thanks to my marketing background I also enjoy working on developing the strategy and branding for Private
“ING gives me every opportunity to do my job properly and I’m really happy about that. I work part-time (50 percent) and it’s doable as long as I stick to my strict schedule, both inside and outside of work – sport, physio and relaxation. I train hard to stay in optimum condition in order to minimise the pain. Striking the right balance takes a lot of discipline. I’ve got a specially adapted chair at the office and my own parking space. I’ve also got a buddy, which is so great. She knows what I’m going through much of the time and helps me when I come up against any issues. For example, I find it difficult to stay within my own limits and to keep having to tell colleagues what I can and can’t do. After a number of discussions with my squad we’ve been able to reach agreements that work well for all of us.”
“I feel completely at home here. The culture at ING is one of openness and inclusivity. Helping one another and giving honest feedback – that really is the way things are done in my team. It’s like a warm blanket. We work really hard but we also have a lot of fun and there’s a friendly atmosphere. We often eat lunch together and regularly organise team outings. My colleagues did the ING Run together, even though most of them aren’t super sporty, and I cheered them on. They’re now continuing to train together. It’s great to see how they help to keep each other motivated!”
Before the accident Jessica did various kinds of ballet at a high level, and she has never lost the urge to exercise. She does weight training three times a week and has regular physiotherapy. She is addicted to Yin yoga, “or old people’s yoga, as I call it, but I love it. In Yin yoga you maintain poses for up to 5 minutes and that can be a real challenge. It also has a meditative effect. I highly recommend it to everyone – literally, because I can’t resist sending YouTube videos through to friends and colleagues. I’ve already converted my Team Lead!”