How can data be used when building trust with customers? In this episode of the CPO Rising Series hosted by Products That Count Resident CPO Renee Niemi, Varo Bank CPO Wook Chung discusses how the company is using data and behavioral insights to build trust with customers and provide innovative lending solutions. As a digital-first bank aiming to serve the underbanked, Varo is developing new ways to underwrite customers based on their behaviors and transactions over time. Chung shares how they are visualizing the trust relationship and using data to offer near-instant access to credit when customers need it. This interview explores Varo’s mission to create a financial operating system that combines traditional banking services in a seamless digital experience, while ensuring regulatory compliance.

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Show Notes:

  1. Varo Bank’s mission is to reinvent banking and serve the underbanked
  2. Using data and behavioral insights to underwrite customers and build trust relationships.
  3. Offering near-instant access to credit when customers need it.
  4. Visualizing the trust relationship for customers over time.
  5. Balancing innovation with regulatory compliance.
  6. Creating a financial operating system rather than a small regional bank.
  7. Prioritizing building blocks for the long-term vision over short-term gains.
  8. The importance of in-person collaboration for creativity and idea generation.
  9. Challenges of cross-functional collaboration in a remote work environment.
  10. Aligning teams on the long-term vision and shared sense of purpose.
  11. Using process to keep teams in sync while allowing freedom.
  12. The role of the CPO in striking the right balance of art and science.
  13. Potential for AI to automate coordination work for PMs.
  14. AI monitoring competitors and flagging new feature opportunities.
  15. Limits of AI in replacing human creativity and intuition.
  16. Serving the underserved through data-driven lending models.
  17. Importance of building products the right way for regulatory industries.
  18. Nurturing customer relationships through innovative UX.
  19. Creating seamless digital experiences for banking services.
  20. Sustainable business models through cost efficiencies and contribution margins.
About the speaker
Wook Chung Varo Bank, Chief Product Officer Member

Wook Chung is the Chief Product Officer at Varo Bank and is responsible for the product, design and marketing functions at the firm. Prior, he has worked at companies such as SoFi, Meta, Twitter, Samsung, Google and Microsoft leading product, design and engineering building consumer experiences, advertising technologies, as well as financial products. Wook studied Electrical Engineering throughout his undergraduate and graduate studies at GeorgiaTech and Stanford University.

About the host
Renee Niemi Mighty Capital, Partner
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