Monzo Staff Weekly Q&A - Natalie Price (Visual Designer)


(Simon B) #1

Note : All Monzo Q&As to date can be found here :grinning:


Forum fam. It’s officially October and you know what that means.

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Yep… it’s PUMPKIN SPICE LATTE season. Which, happily, are now vegan at Starbucks! :tada:

In Monzo user news, we now have…

1,026,264 customers!

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Seriously cool. I feel like we only just hit a million and now there’s 26,000 more of us. Picture 26,000 people. Now picture 1,026,264. It’s a lot of people. Like, a lot. And we’re just getting started.

Before we get into this week’s Q&A, you know what to do!

*Click here to see all previous Q&As*

Week 1 : Chris MacLean, Customer Operations & Vulnerable Customers :santa:t2:

Week 2 : James Nicholson, iOS Engineer :green_apple:

Week 3 : Tara Mansfield, People Operations Manager :woman_technologist:t5::man_technologist:t3:

Week 4 : James Routley, Backend Engineer :hammer_and_wrench:

Week 5 : Hugh Wells, Customer Operations :policeman:t3:‍♂

Week 6 : Naz Malik, Technical Specialist :computer:

Week 7 : Fred Morgan, COps Squad Captain (Calls & Social Media) :telephone_receiver:

Week 8 : Emma Northcott, COps Scaling Team :balance_scale:

Week 9 : Jarno Wolf, COps Financial Crime Specialist & Squad Captain :wolf:

Week 10 : Maria Campbell, Head of People :woman_office_worker:t2::man_office_worker:t4:

Week 11 : Jim Amey, Night COps Captain :bat: :crescent_moon:

Week 12 : Richard Cook, Online Community Manager :man_cook:

Week 13 : Beatrice Borbon, Content & Press Manager :newspaper:

Week 14 : Tom Blomfield, CEO :crown:

Week 15 : Ella Johanny, COps/Hiring :handshake:

Week 16 : Harry Ashbridge, Writer :writing_hand:t3:

Week 17 : Beth Scott, Overnight COps :cat2:

Week 18 : Georgie Parmenter, Executive Assistant to the Founders :blonde_woman:

Week 19 : Vulnerable Customers Team :sunflower:

Week 20 : Leah Templeman, Interim VP People :sun_with_face:

Week 21 : Daniel Chatfield, Backend Engineer, Fincrime & Security :closed_lock_with_key:

Week 22 : Valerio Magliulo, Product Manager - Revenue Team :money_with_wings:

Week 23 : Sam Watkin, Operations Analyst :thinking:

Week 24 : Kieran McHugh, Backend Engineer :desktop_computer:

Week 25 : Jonas Huckestein, Co-Founder and Chief Technical Officer :computer_mouse:

Week 26 : Annual Report Edition with Tristan Thomas and Julie Oey :calendar:

Week 27 : Zander Brade, Lead Product Designer :pencil2:

Week 28 : Richard Dingwall, Payments Engineer :moneybag: :wrench:

Week 29 : Oliver Beattie, Head of Engineering (Reliability Report Special) :watch:

Week 30 : Bruno Vaz Moço, Product Manager (Scalers) :balance_scale:

Week 31 : Dillon Van Auken, Remote COps Team Lead and Vegas Project Team Lead :first_quarter_moon_with_face: 🂡

Week 32 : Rhys Davies, COps Cardiff Office :dragon:

Week 33 : Emily Parrett, COps Call & The Gang :phone:

Week 34 : Liam Houghton, Ops Fixer :hammer_and_wrench:

Week 35 : Frances Coyle, Legal Team :scroll:

Week 36 : Shak Welch, COps Fincrime Specialist :police_car:

Week 37 : Sarah Allen, People Operations :woman: :man:

Week 38 : Simon B, COps Community Specialist :globe_with_meridians:

This week in the Hot Coral Hot Seat™️ we have… Natalie Price, Visual Designer!

Natalie started here at Monzo in September 2017 and she works with the Marketing and Community team, creating illustration and graphic design work for use in our blog, in communications, and across social media!

Fun Fact about Natalie:

From the age of 10 I’ve found four-leaf clovers wherever I go! I’ve probably found over 50 in my life so far.

Her favourite thing about working for Monzo?

Sometimes I still can’t believe I work for a company that allowed and supported me, in the space of a year, to switch roles completely (I started out as a Customer Operations Fincrime Specialist!) and move from London to Copenhagen.

You know the score, folks! Get your questions in and Natalie will be here later this week to answer them :grinning:


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(Adam Kendrew) #2

Just a few, if you don’t mind :slight_smile:

What project have you had the most fun on? Any favourite designs?

Could you give us any insights into your design process? How did you find the switch in roles?


(Tristan Thomas) #3

Which is your favourite team to work with, apart from Design?


(Simon B) #4

What’s your favourite thing about Copenhagen so far?


#5

Is it difficult to not design in line with trends ? Seems to be standard styles dominate then everything changes.

(I am a fan of Monzo style with its marketing and posts!)


((╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻) #6

This sounds like a cool job, something that I’d love to do!

How did you get into the role, qualifications etc and what does it entail each day? Do you basically get to be a detective and solve crimes where they’ve funnelled money through shell corporations and offshore accounts like you see in the movies? :sunglasses:


(Richard Cook) #7

What’s a piece of Monzo design that you feel is typically overlooked or taken for granted?


(Kim L.) #8

What does your design setup look like? :art:


#9

How many four leaf clovers have you found in Denmark?

Do you take inspiration from any other companies who you feel do the “social scene” really well?

Do you feel the iPad is a good design tool? Or is it still computer based? :smiley:


#10

What films do you think had wonderful visual design?


(Eve) #11

What’s your favourite illustration you’ve done for Monzo? Any other personal works you’ve done that you also love? Apart from graphic design, is there another art medium you would like to pick up?


(Simon B) #12

Thanks for the questions, all! If anyone else wants to ask, now’s the time - Natalie will be here to answer them tomorrow.


(Jack) #13

Are their any other products or illustrations you see and think how much better they could be? If so do you have any examples?

How did you find the move leaving behind you colleges you see daily but now see virtually?

What made you decide to swap to such different roles?

If you’re happy to say, which illustration is your least favorite and why that you’ve done for Monzo? I’m yet to see anything I don’t like :smiley:


(Natalie Price) #14

Good questions! :relaxed:

What project have you had the most fun on? Any favourite designs?

Anything involving Hot Chip is always a delight! Aside from that, last month we tried out sharing more of our blog content on our Instagram account. As part of that, we experimented with turning a blog post on credit scores into an illustrated Instagram story, and it ended up being a really fun little design challenge.

Could you give us any insights into your design process?

This is something that I can feel changing (and improving) all the time! When I’m illustrating for something, I start out by casting the net really wide and writing down all the ideas that come to mind, even if they seem half-formed or really terrible. Then I’ll start whittling these ideas down to the ones that I feel are the most solid, and sketch out several until I get a sense of the direction that feels the most right. At various stages I’ll ask the Marketing team or other designers for their thoughts, which helps me make sure I’m doing my best to create things that convey the right tone and meaning for the content they’re supporting (as well as looking pretty).

How did you find the switch in roles?

Great, although definitely a bit weird at first! I went straight from very operational work to my first design day job, and it took me a few weeks to adjust to the change in pace. Now, though, I’ve settled into it, and I love it – I’m learning so much.


(Natalie Price) #15

Is this a test? :joy: Obviously the dreamy Marketing & Community team :star_struck:


(Natalie Price) #16

This is weirdly specific, but the lighting! It’s warm and beautiful pretty much wherever you go. I was working from a cafe this morning and they’d lit candles on every table.


(Natalie Price) #17

This is such an interesting and difficult question to answer (and one I definitely won’t be able to do justice to)! In short – I think it’s probably impossible to design without being influenced by trends, at least somewhat. Good design grows out of research and an awareness of visual culture, and inevitably that means you end up referencing things along the way, consciously or subconsciously. It also means evolving, and knowing the right time to refresh or redesign a brand. However, for sure, I think there’s a real balance to strike. Picking up on a trend for the sake of being current feels quite hollow to me, probably because, the more I learn, the more I love how thoughtful and considered design has the potential to be.


(Natalie Price) #18

I actually had zero fincrime experience when I applied for the job! I applied because I thought I had some skills which fit the job description (I’d previously had jobs that had a customer-facing element, I love solving problems and investigation/analysis, etc.)… but probably the main reason I applied was because in the first job I got when I moved to London, my new employers (who never paid me) turned out to be fraudsters. That’s a whole other story though :sweat_smile:

This is such a cliché, but genuinely I found that no two days were the same, probably because fraudsters are pretty good at switching up their methods. The range of financial crime we’d come across meant that we were dealing with things that we came to consider ‘common’ behaviour (like stolen card fraud), to situations that were completely bizarre or difficult to untangle. I’d really recommend reading the Q&A done by Shak (a current Fincrime Spec) a few weeks ago if you’re interested in finding out more about the job: Monzo Staff Weekly Q&A - Shak Welch (COps, Financial Crime Specialist)


(Natalie Price) #19

I don’t know if this is overlooked, but I’m including it because I think it’s such a lovely touch that might be more easily forgotten because you only encounter it once (maybe more if you lose your card!): the card carriers and navy envelopes. I love paper/print, and as a digital bank we obviously don’t use it a lot, but I think it’s a lovely way of making what is normally a super mundane experience (receiving your bank card in the post) really charming.


((╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻) #20

You’re a :star: thank you for taking the time to answer and @SHAK s Q&A was a great read that I’d somehow missed so cheers for that too!