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Digital Transformation

How PayPal Supports Its Global Business Community, Safely and Quickly, During the Pandemic

Employee experience (EX), sales team support, and a modern, secure API infrastructure helped prep this financial giant for success.

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[@JAMIE GRILL ATLAS/Stocksy United]

Three-hundred forty-six million people across more than 200 markets use the PayPal platform to buy everything from chairs to chocolate. The global financial technology firm has come a long way since its launch in 1999, and it has steadily evolved with its customers ever since.

But when COVID-19 struck, PayPal suddenly had to support 98% of their employees remotely, as well as the international community of artisans and retailers who use its platform.

Every office has a different persona made of different individuals with different skill sets. The question was, “How do we tailor our offerings and our response to what’s required in that location?”

Dan Torunian, vice president, employee technology and experiences, PAYPAL

First and foremost, PayPal made a critical overarching decision that led to great success. Rather than require a blanket transition plan across the globe, leadership decided to empower its local offices to lead their respective transitions. What makes sense in Dublin might not make sense in India. What makes sense in Omaha might not work in New York. “Every office has a different persona made of different individuals with different skill sets,” said Dan Torunian, vice president, employee technology and experiences. “The question was, “How do we tailor our offerings and our response to what’s required in that location?”

In this post, we’ll walk through the other key decisions PayPal made in the wake of the pandemic — from focusing on its employee experience, to empowering its sales teams, to ensuring their culture of decision making was more data-backed than ever before. Read on to learn how they executed sweeping changes across the organization.

PayPal made employee experience as important as the customer experience

Making the employee experience (EX) as important as the customer experience (CX) became the new way of managing the business. Catering to employees with the same fervor they do customers became the organization’s mission while their teams worked from afar. “We believe a healthy workforce will deliver a healthy customer experience,” said Torunian. “We need to challenge ourselves to insulate our workforce from any future black swan event.”

Companies who focus on EX to deliver premium CX achieve 1.8 times greater revenue growth (nearly double) than organizations that solely focus on customers.

Forbes Insights Research –The Experience Equation

And that practice has paid off for companies like PayPal, along with several other leading brands. A study conducted by Salesforce in partnership with Forbes Insight showed that companies who focused on EX to deliver premium CX achieved 1.8 times greater revenue growth (nearly double) than organizations that solely focused on customers. Creating an operational strategy to integrate EX with CX helps unite teams around the customers and keep their interest top of mind.

In a recent conversation between Torunian and Lindsey Irvine, chief marketing officer for MuleSoft, Torunian said, “What the employee wants to do hasn’t really changed that dramatically. Employees still want to get their job done, they want to know what’s going on with their organization, and they want to continue to advance in their career. And leaders must equip them with resources [like technology] to effectively do all of the above.”

How supporting a sales team can help meet evolving customer needs

When PayPal’s leadership worked to bring in new technology, roadblocks also surfaced within their sales process. Torunian recognized that the sales team needed to transform the way they sell commerce platform products for small- to enterprise-size businesses. Disparate systems and processes made it difficult for reps to have a complete view of the customer and in turn, this made it difficult for reps to act as trusted customer advisors. They needed a holistic view of the buyer at every touchpoint to provide a consistent experience.

Our sales team is working with a high level of confidence. They’re not thinking about the various systems they need to navigate. They’re not being mechanics — they’re artists in the process.

DAN TORUNIAN, VICE PRESIDENT, EMPLOYEE TECHNOLOGY AND EXPERIENCES, PAYPAL

With Sales Cloud, they can now fully digitize the end-to-end sales cycle – including pricing, underwriting, and legal support. Through an integration with Tableau data visualization software, they also gained the ability to make more strategic decisions about how best to support their customers. Torunian says that these tools allowed them to shorten their sales cycle, recognize revenue sooner, and deliver a better merchant experience. 

“Our sales team is working with a high level of confidence,” Torunian shared. “They’re not thinking about the various systems they need to navigate. They’re not being mechanics — they’re artists in the process.”

Developing secure and profitable partner experiences

You’ve probably seen PayPal bubble up as a buying option on many of your favorite online platforms. With an uptick in data threats during the onset of the pandemic, PayPal recognized the need to improve data security (and partner confidence) around software integrations with other purchasing platforms. That’s where MuleSoft, an integration software solution, came into play.

PayPal used MuleSoft’s Anypoint Platform to help guard customer data against hackers and automate over 80% of security processes. PayPal’s security teams can now quickly detect threats on the platform and understand where they’re coming from. By partnering with MuleSoft, PayPal overhauled their homegrown API with a safer, more modern infrastructure.

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