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Olivia Vazquez | Product Management

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  • We seek to understand our users’ thoughts and needs before we design.

  • Observing real people in their real lives enriches our personas.

  • Our design is accountable to serving clients’ goals.

  • Iterate, test, and repeat: continuous improvement is our mantra.

UX team talks strategy

People make it happen.

It takes all kinds.

More information about Mimi

Mimi Bryl-Benton
Design Democratizer
Senior UX Designer

Human-centered design gets this hard-working mom up every morning. Her persistence and X-ray vision helps her be an effective status quo disruptor. Plan B career: DJ.

More information about Brandon

Brandon Hoerres
Philosopher King
Software Applications Engineer

This BMX biker/commuter and natural pessimist claims there’s never a dull moment working on the Big Deals team. Theme song: “This Must Be the Place”

More information about Jami

Jami Peets
Creative Sense Maker
User Experience Researcher

Unconventional thinker who’s most likely to break into laughter says Schwab’s customer-first approach ties directly to user-centered designs.

More information about Gauranga

Gauranga Desai
Applications Boss
Managing Director, Portfolio Connect

Loves to dig in and ask why. Driven to make a difference in people’s lives through his work for advisors. Detroit roots make him a Lions fan forever.

More information about Kathy

Kathy Emsoff
Social Landscaper
Managing Director, User Experience

Hyperfocused on human-centered design, she loves Schwab’s emphasis on simplicity, scale, and purpose. Theme song: “Thunder”

More information about Michael

Michael Samples
Paradigm Savant
Technical Director, Software Applications Engineer

Car aficionado (’68 Bronco, baby) driven to create high-performance experiences for clients. Theme song: “It’s a Long Way to the Top”

More information about Jason

Jason Mousseau
Rebel Developer
Accessibility Specialist

Driven by a passion for music, Buddhism, and mixed media art, he loves his team and their work that directly impacts clients with disabilities.

More information about Zach

Zach Bolena
Accessibility Guru
Senior Manager, User Experience

This photographer/film buff loves beautiful imagery, riding his motorcycle, and making a difference in people’s lives through his work.

More information about Wei

Wei Zhang
Deadline Maven
Senior User Experience Researcher

Talkative mom and amateur psychologist is passionate about sports, music, and travel. Loves the Schwab UX family feel.

Culture counts.

Connect with what’s new, what’s up, and what’s next.

  • People power

    What’s the Schwab digital culture like?

    Video 1 minutes 19 seconds

    Hi, I’m Neesha Hathi and I’m the Chief Digital Officer and Executive Vice President at Charles Schwab. Culture in Digital Services is about being imaginative, seeing a problem, and having a sense of urgency for finding solutions. We work collaboratively and use journey mapping and design thinking to look at the end-to-end client experience. And we work in agile teams to make it better, faster, and inclusive. By creating a diverse team of experiences and people, we believe we can drive better outcomes for clients. We mix it up when we work, bringing business partners, data scientists, UX designers, product managers, developers, you name it. And we work as a community, creating the best experiences we can for clients. Everyone has the opportunity to make an impact. And you don’t have to be in financial services. We have team members from all sorts of industries join us. We have a special development and career growth program for our digital team. We’ll help you build the skills you need to be successful here. I’ve been a Schwabbie for over 14 years, and I love Schwab—because we really put the client first.

  • By the numbers

    See what’s up at Gracy Farms

    Video 1 minutes 35 seconds

    [Upbeat music plays throughout.]

    Onscreen text: Think a financial company like Schwab is all about the numbers?

    You’re right.

    Welcome to Gracy Farms.

    Over 1,800 Schwabbies call this place home.

    We work in a 450,000 square foot campus in Austin, Texas.

    We have over 160 collaboration spaces.

    There are 3 guys named Chuck.

    Our café has 24 fountain drink flavors.

    And when it’s time for a break?

    Hike a trail on our 50 acre campus.

    Grab a 16 oz. cappuccino.

    See who can score 11 points first.

    Relax on one of the 7 tiers in our amphitheater.

    5 years in a row, we’ve been a Top Workplace in Austin.

    There are 0 reasons not to love it here.

    And with over 2,600 spaces for people to work, we have 1 seat waiting for you.

    Find your spot. And join over 18,000 others who work at Schwab around the world.

    Visit aboutschwab.com/careers

    [Upbeat song ends, and brand piano music plays.]

    Onscreen text: Charles Schwab. Own your tomorrow

    Legal:
    Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer committed to diversifying its workforce. It is Schwab's policy to provide equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants without regard to race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, or related medical conditions), gender identity or expression, national origin, ancestry, age, disability, legally protected medical condition, genetic information, marital status, sexual orientation, protected veteran status, military status, citizenship status or any other status that is protected by law. Schwab also does not discriminate against applicants or employees because they have inquired about, discussed, or disclosed their own pay or the pay of another employee or applicant. At Schwab, we believe that every employee, through their diverse abilities and experiences, can contribute to our growth, innovation and client loyalty. We embrace diversity and are committed to providing equal opportunity to all employees and applicants. If you have a disability, and require reasonable accommodations in the application process, call Human Resources at 800-725-3535. We will be happy to assist you. Schwab will only share your accommodation request with those individuals who have a specific need to know. The request for an accommodation will not affect Schwab’s hiring decisions. All other submissions should be performed online. The Charles Schwab Corporation provides a full range of securities, brokerage, banking, money management, and financial advisory services through its operating subsidiaries. Its broker-dealer subsidiary, Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. (“Schwab”), Member SIPC, offers investment services and products, including Schwab brokerage accounts. Its banking subsidiary, Charles Schwab Bank (member FDIC and an Equal Housing Lender), provides deposit and lending services and products.

  • Lift Off podcast

    Tobin McDaniel, SVP, Digital Advice and Innovation

    Podcast 11 minutes 55 seconds

    Upbeat music plays, then fades to background.

    Male intro speaker: You are listening to Lift Off, a podcast that provides a glimpse into the stories and people behind the Digital Accelerator. Talent and organizational development is sitting down with leaders, technologists, artists, and educators with a common goal of sparking creativity and innovation for Charles Schwab. We will talk about the projects, processes, and lessons they have learned as they have launched with the Digital Accelerator.

    Alexander Husarek: Hey, everybody, and welcome to Lift Off. I'm your host, Alexander Husarek. Today I'm sitting down with Tobin McDaniel, the SVP over Digital Advice and Innovation for Charles Schwab. We will learn how he left chemical engineering to pivot towards the financial industry. I'm going to pick his brain about the Digital Accelerator, how he keeps a technological edge over our competition, and what it's like solving for digital challenges and disruption in his world, a very regulated space. I think you guys are really going to enjoy listening to this podcast.

    Upbeat music continues to play and stops. Beat of silence.

    Alexander: So, the first question that I have, Tobin, is about your background. Your background consists of some unique perspectives. You started in chemical engineering at Carnegie Mellon and then went to Wharton Business School. Then upon arriving at Schwab, you've held roles like managing director, chief of staff—a role that directly interfaced with Chuck [Charles Schwab]—and now SVP over Digital Advice and Innovation. So how does that all connect?

    Tobin McDaniel: So, I do have a varied background. What I'd say is, you know, I studied chemical engineering and actually worked for a large chemical company, but very quickly realized I didn't want to be an engineer, and even in that chemical company I ended up working on technology and ended up playing what back then was probably the equivalent of a product owner role. We didn't call it that then, but that's probably the closest analogy. I love the way technology enabled that business and made it easier to serve those customers and was just always passionate about tech. I went to business school and broadened my business education, eventually found my way to Schwab. And from day one was very passionate about what we were doing, particularly through some of our digitally enabled businesses, trading services, what we do on Schwab.com. You know, many of us back then were very keen on Schwab entering the robo-advice space. As you mentioned, I got to work for Chuck Schwab and see his vision for how we should be serving investors, how we should be making our industry better for individuals. And I've just been so lucky to work on that the past few years as I've led Digital Advice and now lead our innovation team. So it's really, for me, I think technology can make most things better for people, more accessible, easier to use, and investing’s certainly the same. I want to be part of that. I want to help us as a company extend our mission, our reach, and our market share by using technology to better serve investors.

    Alexander: Now that you're with Schwab and hold the title as the SVP of Digital Advice and Innovation, how do you view the role of Digital Services at Schwab?

    Tobin: So, the role of Digital Services is to help enable how we serve investors and advisors. You know, our businesses aren't just digital, but digital is such an important component of what we do, whether you're an IS and the millions of customers we serve in IS or in Advisor Services with the thousands of advisors who in turn serve scores and scores of customers. Digital is core to what we do, it’s core to the scale that makes our company so competitive, and it's the expectation that both investors and advisors have. So I think the formation of digital services allows us to hopefully accelerate the experiences and the efficiencies that digital can provide.

    Alexander: Every business holds its own unique challenges. What challenge exists for Digital Services?

    Tobin: We have so much appetite to improve our business and improve how we serve clients. We've got to find the most important things and really build those things end to end. So that we're not just building a great client experience, but a great process all the way through that's efficient, scalable, and helps our business grow. And, you know, there's always a risk of trying to bite off too much. And I think for us, we're just so passionate about making things better for clients that can often be the case, and so I think focusing on the most important things, doing them really well, and then moving to the next most important thing I think is one of the big opportunities for us and big things we really need to keep an eye out on.

    Alexander: So, that's interesting to me as we think about digital disruption and the threats that come with that. What threats or opportunities of digital disruption do you think we will be addressing in the near future?

    Tobin: When you look at our industry, there are lots of small companies doing really interesting things with digital, doing sort of part of the value chain, part of the investing experience, part of the advisor experience. But, my belief is investors want that integrated experience. They want to be able to work with a firm that can meet all of their needs, that can complement digital with people. That said, those investors aren't going to tolerate sort of subpar digital experiences. So for us, I think we've got a huge advantage in the scale, breadth, and quality of services we provide, but we've got to be cognizant that the disruption for us is that investors continually have higher expectations. Consumers do. And it's not just the startups in fintech that set those expectations, it’s Google, Amazon, Uber, and all the other companies we use every day. And that's the bar that will be increasingly held to or our competitors will be held to. I think we've got an incredible value proposition. If we get digital right, it'll help us serve those clients better and grow and grow and grow in this market.

    Alexander: How do you feel we innovate in a risk-averse industry, especially when the financial industry sometimes seems slower to evolve or adapt to change and innovation?

    Tobin: Hmm. You know, I think, well, one, our industry is built on investing, which is all about taking risk. And so, you know, we have to be cognizant with the risks that we have when we manage our business and how we help our clients take risks, but risk is an inherent part of what we do. I think there's still plenty of opportunity to innovate even if we want to be a little more thoughtful and a little slower about some of the changes we make. And it all starts from focusing on what the client wants, what they need, and building solutions for them. If you get the right solution built and you can find the way for it to fit the regulatory framework or make sure it's appropriately reviewed and reliable. It is the nature of our business that, you know, we've got to be cautious. We're managing and custodying people's money—over three-and-a-half trillion dollars. I mean, that's something you should be cautious about. But it doesn't mean innovation stops. Innovation still centers around our investors and our advisors. And I'm not too concerned about pace. I think pace can still move pretty quickly in a company like this.

    Alexander: So what have you seen our competitors doing in the digital space that we either need to match against or we need to take a different, higher position to be able to service our clients and provide the best experience as you have mentioned?

    Tobin: When I'm looking at competitors and it's not any particular competitor, but I'm always looking to see how they are simplifying a user experience, making it easier for someone to find the solution they need, to have the transaction, to conduct the transaction they want. You know, we all want it to be seamless. We all want some of those basics be taken care of, you know, brilliantly. And so I really look for those experiences where someone makes it easy to get—have chat help, where someone makes it really easy to withdraw money, or someone makes it very easy to add money. Those are the types of experiences I think that really matter. I think Marie Chandoha said this first around here that I heard, “Simplicity is the new innovation.” So I like watching how people are making it simple.

    Alexander: What do you see from a regulatory perspective that might impact our ability to innovate and grow in the future? For example, last year when massive changes happened to the financial market with the new regulations that came down, do those regulations stifle our creativity, or do you feel as if they actually give us a challenge to work toward?

    Tobin: You know, I think for us, given that our company strategy is through client eyes and we’re so often trying to do what's best for investors, frankly regardless of other things, it usually means we're more in line with regulations than maybe some of our competitors are. I think we're well positioned for the future. Certainly we pay close attention to the regulations, how they impact our business, how we need to react. But I think broadly we are well positioned to do well because we try to do the right things by clients.

    Alexander: So, Tobin, what do you do on a daily basis to gain creative energy and do you listen or read anything in particular? How do you find connection points into the competition?

    Tobin: How do I gain energy? Well, I'm glad this is a podcast and not a video cast, because there's plenty of empty coffee cups around my office, and there's one closer to the mic than I am actually. So that's one thing, but what do I do? You know, I love trying new apps, so when I hear about a new company in our space or another space and, you know, I was just in my last meeting, someone was telling me about a startup fintech, and I just downloaded their app and checked it out. I love to see what people are doing. So I love that. I love that experience. I listen to my own broad share of podcasts, some are just entertainment, some are business related. I do that to sort of, kind of spur thinking and, you know, try to see what's going on. I mean, I'm based in San Francisco. There's so much startup energy around here as there are in many of our locations, Austin and the Denver area, that you can see a lot from just what other companies are trying to do. It may or may not be in our industry, but there's so much you can try to learn from.

    Alexander: So, you may or may not be aware. There are different teams in the organization that are trying to find connection points with the Accelerator. I feel like everyone's watching how the organization is maybe pivoting to this new kind of outlook. What would you say to that associate on ways to feel more connected?

    Tobin: Hmm. Well, I think there is—we try to have plenty of communications about what we're doing, both in the Accelerator part of Digital and Digital more broadly. And Digital kind of touches all of us. We're all Schwab clients, right? So we're all experiencing the Digital experience. So, but I'd say look for some of the communications we have. If, you know, you're in Austin or San Francisco, you can kind of check out the Accelerator spaces and teams, pay attention to the things that we’ll hopefully be releasing pretty soon in terms of experiences. And then, you know, we are going to be working with so many parts of the company as we tackle particular challenges. We’ll be working with marketing, and the field teams, and many other parts of the company depending on what we're working on.

    Alexander: What would be the number-one podcast you recommend to someone, other than this one, of course?

    Tobin: Well, what's a distant second? You know, I really liked the HBR Idea Cast—so from Harvard Business Review—I don't listen to every one of them, but there's some really interesting ideas that come out of there. Andreessen Horowitz has a pretty interesting [unintelligible], a big venture capital fund has a pretty interesting podcast, I forget what they call it, that I also quite enjoy. Not every single one of them, right? But I look through. It’s the a16z Podcast.

    Upbeat music starts to play again

    Alexander: That is the podcast for this week. Thank you so much for listening. It was incredible to be able to sit down with Tobin McDaniel to hear his unique perspective. Check back next week to hear another incredible interview from the Digital Accelerator. If you'd like to be notified of future episodes or series, please hit that “Subscribe.” I'll see you next week on Lift Off.

    Upbeat music continues to play, then fades.

    Legal:

    Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer committed to diversifying its workforce. It is Schwab's policy to provide equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants without regard to race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, or related medical conditions), gender identity or expression, national origin, ancestry, age, disability, legally protected medical condition, genetic information, marital status, sexual orientation, protected veteran status, military status, citizenship status or any other status that is protected by law.

    ©2018 Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. All rights reserved. Member SIPC. (1218-86XZ)

  • Transforming business

    How a scrum master makes it happen

    Video 1 minutes 41 seconds

    Upbeat music plays

    Onscreen text: Charles Schwab.

    Onscreen text: Cynthia Coffey, Scrum Master, Charles Schwab & Co., Inc.

    Cynthia: Basically, a transformation coach is helping an organization transform their business or their operational practices. And in particular, in the group that I’m in, it’s mostly engineering practices, but it’s a combo, actually. So it’s really about transitioning—you’re doing business one way, kind of under one mindset, and then you transition to doing practices and methods that maybe fit under another mindset, with the hope of increasing your performance.

    So Retail Web Technology is actually the organization that produces Schwab.com, so if you’re out on the web and you type in “Schwab.com,” then you land on the product that this organization works on.

    Schwab was really appealing to me because I could hear in the communications that I had with folks that the company was focused on work-life balance, and that culture was really important to them.

    My best day…man, you know, I think the best day that I had—I work with some people here who I wanna work with for the rest of my life. I work with some amazing, intrinsically motivated people that are just—I love working with them. And so, I think my best day is spent with those folks, you know, kind of coaching them on the stuff that they already know and the expertise they already have, and just kind of helping them shape how they’re gonna use that to best impact the group. It’s awesome, it’s fun.

    I chose Schwab because Schwab is a place where I get to be who I am and share my gifts every day.

    Upbeat music plays

    Onscreen text: Start your Schwab Story today: aboutschwab.com/careers

    Onscreen text: Charles Schwab. Own your tomorrow. ©2017 Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. All rights reserved. Member SIPC. (1217-7EA9)

  • My Schwab story

    Nigel Gombakomba, scrum master

    Video 1 minutes 42 seconds

    Upbeat music plays

    Onscreen text: Charles Schwab.

    Onscreen text: Nigel Gombakomba, Scrum Master, Charles Schwab & Co., Inc.

    Nigel: You know, just working in IT in general, there’s always something new. So it’s either a new challenge, or there’s a new product coming up, there’s a new impediment that needs to be worked with. So just having something new to work with every day, I think it keeps me going.

    Originally I’m from Zimbabwe. I was born in Malta, my parents were students there, but they relocated to Zimbabwe and I was there until 2002–2003. That’s when I came to the U.S. So I was a student in New York, and D.C. for grad school.

    My thing with the technology, it’s really vast. It covers a lot of areas, and it interfaces with different—whether it’s external partners or within the organization itself. The technology is just massive, so that’s one of the key things that keeps me driving, just trying to understand and learn more as you work with the teams.

    One thing I can definitely say about Schwab is the culture of the people here—everyone is friendly, they’re very collaborative and open to learning something new and trying things out.

    I chose Schwab because the work that we do is not only meaningful to the teams but it also is meaningful to our advisors and their clients.

    Upbeat music plays

    Onscreen text: Start your Schwab Story today: aboutschwab.com/careers

    Onscreen text: Charles Schwab. Own your tomorrow. ©2017 Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. All rights reserved. Member SIPC. (1217-7EA9)

  • Engaging Environment

    Collaboration gets the job done

    Video 1 minutes 5 seconds

    Light music plays

    Onscreen text: Charles Schwab

    Onscreen text: Engage in a collaborative work environment.

    Onscreen text: Warren Brown

    Warren: My name is Warren Brown and I’m a Software Applications Engineer.

    So I've been serving in the Air Force for going on 15 years now. My role in the Air Force has been construction-type work, as an electrician. The transition from the Air Force to working as a software engineer in Schwab has been a smooth transition because I have to do a lot of collaborative work here at Schwab, and being in the military you have to collaborate with different members to get the job done.

    Even though Schwab is a financial institution, I still get the opportunity to work with the latest technologies in web development. So it’s a great place for software engineers to come to if they’re looking to get involved into the industry.

    I think Schwab is a great place to work for vets, in particular, because you get to use the skills and training that you learned in the military here at Schwab, as well.

    I enjoy the challenges that I have to face every day because it pushes me to become better at my craft and excel. Challenges help me to grow.

    Light music plays

    Onscreen text: Charles Schwab. Own your tomorrow.

    Learn more: SchwabJobs.com

    Legal:

    Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer committed to diversifying its workforce. It is Schwab's policy to provide equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants without regard to race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, or related medical conditions), gender identity or expression, national origin, ancestry, age, disability, legally protected medical condition, genetic information, marital status, sexual orientation, protected veteran status, military status, citizenship status or any other status that is protected by law.

    ©2018 Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. All rights reserved. Member SIPC. (0618-8FX6)

  • Meaningful work

    Solving big problems is important

    Video 1 minutes 12 seconds

    Light music plays

    Onscreen text: Charles Schwab

    Onscreen text: Engage in meaningful work.

    Yogen: My name is Yogen Mankikar and I am a Senior Software Engineer here at Schwab.

    I think Schwab is a great place to work, because where else do you get to work almost like a start-up company? Where you’re starting on a brand-new project and you can define a lot of technological pieces that go into the software, and at the same time you have the safety and security of a large organization. It gives you that flexibility of doing what you like while having the security.

    What I enjoy most about my job is solving complex, technical problems, and the solution will be used by people for decades to come. These are complex problems. There’s a lot of money movement involved, there’s a lot of customers. The software we build here is used by thousands of people, if not more, and it is important that they find that experience pleasant, and that’s something I try to focus on day to day, and that’s what makes the work here important.

    Light music plays

    Onscreen text: Charles Schwab. Own your tomorrow.

    Learn more: SchwabJobs.com

    Legal:

    Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer committed to diversifying its workforce. It is Schwab's policy to provide equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants without regard to race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, or related medical conditions), gender identity or expression, national origin, ancestry, age, disability, legally protected medical condition, genetic information, marital status, sexual orientation, protected veteran status, military status, citizenship status or any other status that is protected by law.

    ©2018 Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. All rights reserved. Member SIPC. (0618-8FX6)

  • Women in Technology

    Linda Albornoz, vice president

    Article | 1 minute read

  • Women in Technology

    Sonika Kotwal, software applications engineer

    Article | 1 minute read

Austin, TX—Gracy Farms Campus