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Simplifying international bill payments to family members with Arrange

Client

Arrange

Sector

Fintech

My Role

Entire product design, from research to execution

Project Time

3 weeks to clickable prototype

Idea

Context

Arrange is a financial platform which allows individuals to send remittance payments directly to family members in third world and other countries. In my first conversation with the founder (who is based in the U.S.), he explained that he and his siblings had been sending money to their mother in Jamaica for years, and he had discovered many problems associated with this practice. He identified corruption and unequal incomes among family members as major pain points leading to 1) money sent to family members in other countries not being used for its intended purpose (rent payments, utility bills, etc.) and 2) high emotional strain among family members facing different financial pressures and subsequent family discord. Arrange seeks to solve these problems by creating a platform that allows individuals to make payments that go directly towards paying off another family member’s bill, while also implementing unique social features designed to ameliorate the stressful family dynamic that develops when siblings with different financial means try to split a bill amongst themselves.

My role was to create a clickable prototype for the founder to be able to show to investors. I started by doing extensive research on competing platforms in the product space and user interviews to better understand the needs, wants, and constraints of people who are sending and receiving payment transfers. Once I had completed the research phase, I created wireframes and iterated on those before developing a high-fidelity prototype. The entire project took me about 3 weeks to complete. 

Competition

Researching other platforms

I started my research process by looking at other competitors in the problem space. The biggest competitor I found was Xoom, a payment transfer program developed by PayPal. Xoom offers a very similar service to Arrange insofar as it allows users to directly pay other peoples’ bills in third world countries (Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Jamaica, Mexico, and Nicaragua). One major advantage of Xoom is that, being a PayPal service, users feel comfortable that their payments will be processed safely. Therefore, I used the UX and visual precedents set by Xoom to inform my own design so as to imbue it with as much legitimacy as possible as a new payment platform. I found the experience of paying bills through Xoom to be efficient and intuitive. However, the service does not allow users to split bill payments among family members, which is a common practice among those paying overseas bills. Thus, I wanted my design to emphasize and explain Arrange’s “split bills” feature. 

Conducting user interviews

Next, I went through the process of interviewing users in order to empathize with their experience of splitting a family member's bill. Through this process, I learned: 

Individuals want to pay their family member’s bills directly because they are worried about extortion.

Countries such as Jamaica lack a good bureaucratic tracking system as many citizens don’t have social security numbers or even birth certificates. Therefore, cases of extortion happen regularly. Usually, utility companies are nationally owned and have a monopoly over their industry. People who plan to send money back to their family members for the purpose of paying their bills would rather the money was sent directly to these companies than to their family members, who may fall prey to people seeking to extort them. 

“I once sent money back home to pay for funeral expenses, but somewhere along the line it was inappropriately used for something else. I ended up having to pay double what I intended to spend before my money was actually used to help pay for the funeral. I wish I had been able to pay the funeral service company directly, so I was assured that my money was going where I wanted it.”  

Unequal family member incomes create undue stress when trying to split bills.

People seeking to pay their family members' bills often want to split the total cost of these bills with their siblings, but different income levels among the "splitters" can lead to family strife and unfair arrangements. Sometimes, a wealthier sibling feels "guilted" into paying the entirety of the bill alone because his siblings "assume he can and should" do so. On the other hand, less wealthy siblings feel "shame" when their siblings automatically cover their share of the bill because they assume they can't pay. Thus, miscommunications lead to the unfair splitting of bills and the creation of negative family dynamics. 

User Interviews
User Personas

Developing user personas

I then developed personas to more concretely conceptualize and understand Arrange's two key user types and their individual goals when using the platform.  

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Journey mapping

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Journey Mapping

Wireframes

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Wireframes
Product Design

Final product design

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