UX folks, these are 6 reasons why you should work for the DBS Design Team

UX folks, these are 6 reasons why you should work for the DBS Design Team

14 Aug 2017  •  10 min read

Good user experience is about designing the right things and designing things right. 

At DBS Bank, our goal as a UX team runs in our veins: to ensure our customers receive the best product experiences we can ever deliver. As a bank motivated to meet the ever changing needs of the world by moving digital to the core of what we do, we work around the clock trying to get things right. That is why we’re on the lookout for the most passionate UX individuals to join us in creating better products for our customers—even if it’s to make John Doe’s experience of checking his account balance a little less gloomy despite that little hole in his pocket.

Here are six great reasons why you should consider joining DBS Bank if you’re a UX designer (and I’m totally, questionably, unbiased).

1. You’ll be nurtured

UX designers are more than the sum of their name cards and computers. If you’re only tasked to focus on “getting that design out” within the confines of your desk and aren’t given the opportunity to go out there to understand how people live their lives and what they need, you’ll be a worse-off designer than when you started. Here, we aspire to bring out the best in everyone and harness creativity amongst us. It’s why we offer mentorship opportunities and have 10 to 12 hours of team building exercises every month.

In such a strict environment, we challenge ourselves by working within constraints whilst pushing boundaries. Working with restrictions and compliance makes us more robust in our practice.

Every last Friday of the month, we have a Creative Day where we all take turns to organise activities that are a mix of exploring the outdoors and learning a craft. So far, we’ve had a ton of fun enjoying all sorts of activities, from team dinners and drama classes to kayaking and calligraphy workshops. We’ve also had had our team off-site events in Chiang Mai, Bali and Ho Chi Minh City, and many of us have also had the opportunity to attend key conferences such as UXSG and 99U Conference overseas.

2. We do get ‘the nod of approval’ from our stakeholders

The culture at DBS Bank is one that embraces innovation and digital, but with that comes the need for velocity and something a little more focused around the end user: narrative.

As a designer, my role is that of a storyteller. It is my responsibility to make sure what we do resonates with senior management and other stakeholders as we work together to achieve our goals for the company. Do that well and we enjoy their utmost support, plus, how often do you see people coming out of a meeting smiling? Increasingly, the management recognises what we do as UX designers, and I’m more than grateful to say that I know they have our back.

3. We’re (probably) the biggest UX team in Singapore. 

We’ve gone from two designers (including me) on our staff in 2014 to 36 of us in the design team — product designers, user researchers and UX engineers – from nine countries today. I’m proud to say that our staff retention rate is a substantial 97 per cent.


It’s a question a lot of people ask me: How? I’d like to say it’s because we value one another and everyone’s contributions to the team. We spend so much time with one another daily, people say we’ve formed our own little community. We don’t want standalone superstars; we want a superstar team that works well together and helps one another become open, honest and supportive peers. 

4. You’ll make an impact 

Whatever you do as a UX designer with DBS, you’ll quickly learn that the bank’s impact on the various communities is huge. After all, in Singapore alone, 90 per cent of Singaporeans have a POSB and/or DBS account.

As a designer in the team, you’ll be entrusted the baton to bring positive impact to people and communities with the applications that you create. And that’s where we are different from many large corporations — we believe in the potential of the people we hire.

5. We offer variety, the spice of life

There’s no denying that working on the same app for five years straight might get dull and unexciting for some. It’s like eating chicken rice every day! That’s not to say you can’t have your chicken rice every day, but you get the drift. Some people need variety. Playing with that analogy, I’d say that at DBS Bank, UX designers have a whole food court open to them.

We work on at least eight different platforms across functions, products and markets, and we currently provide our expertise across the six markets for DBS Consumer Banking: Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Indonesia, India and China. Within Consumer Banking alone, our diversified solutions target different problems for different people across mobile, desktop, chat banking, and even artificial intelligence.

6. You’ll be a better designer

Frankly, if you can work in a bank, you can probably work anywhere.

The banking industry has one of the most rigid regulations, with many developed banks having multiple legacy IT systems in place. Imagine DBS Bank being just three years younger than Singapore! (I’d like to think we’re that friendly and steadfast senior-citizen neighbour of yours, constantly upgrading ourselves with SkillsFuture credits.)

In such a strict environment, we challenge ourselves by working within constraints whilst pushing boundaries. Working with restrictions and compliance makes us more robust in our practice. The real sense of satisfaction and achievement comes when our prototypes get the stamp of approval.

With that much said, I’m guessing you’ve already come to realise… we’re hiring! In this time of technological disruption, your work at DBS Bank will be exciting – I can promise you that!

This article was first published by Mr Chooake Wongwattanasilpa via LinkedIn on 29 June 2017. Permission required for reproduction. Click here to visit DBS's recruitment page.

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