Brand Expedia is undergoing a multi-phase, cross-platform brand refresh that spans multiple lines of business. My role is to ensure homepage goals are met on time, technical solutions are scalable, modules are easy to use, and design standards are met. I'm partnering with Customer Experience (CX), merchandising, engineering, product, and advertising leads to meet marketing-driven deadlines and improve the brand experience for our travelers.
When COVID-19 accelerated, Expedia teams were rushing to get information out to travelers as fast as they could. While this was a noble endeavor, the result was that information was released to production without any quality checks. We unintentionally ended up confusing travelers with conflicting and inconsistent information.
I volunteered to partner with CX to establish a cross-functional review process which vetted COVID-19 content and designs before handoff to engineering. The new process ensured that designs were approved by public relations and legal experts, leveraged our Universal Design System, were accessible to travelers using assistive technologies, and had logical end-to-end user flows. Having regular discussions amongst CX teams working on COVID-19 features also facilitated getting crucial questions answered and lent visibility into what everyone was working on.
Having been on platform engineering teams for the majority of my time at Expedia, this was an exciting opportunity to work with the CX organization. Trips was a complex program with several vertical tracks, each with their own rapidly-changing roadmaps and goals. CX was the only organization that needed to work horizontally across the program and end-to-end across the traveler journey to ensure a cohesive experience. My role was to help them achieve this. I established views that would allow us to understand and track the status of all CX program work. I also set up an intake process, assisted with prioritizing tasks, and facilitated resourcing. Resourcing was especially challenging because CX was extremely understaffed; tradeoffs frequently had to be made. Establishing a regular communication cadence with all the tracks ensured alignment, identified program gaps, and eliminated duplicative work.
CX was the only team that successfully operated at this scale within the program and we were able to deliver designs that help travelers plan and book their trips.
Expedia started an initiative to migrate their Java-based legacy technology stack to a new PWA platform. The new platform leverages Node, Webpack, GraphQL APIs, a cross-platform design system, a React-based UI Toolkit, and an internal analytics library. Many of these technologies, both internal and external, were unfamiliar to teams. The approach and mindset of how to work within the new technological landscape was also entirely different.
I was part of a core team that was responsible for educating technical and non-technical stakeholders on the benefits of PWA adoption, consulting on how to approach migration, and informing teams about what to expect post-migration. Most teams at Expedia were set up as single page apps with unique frameworks and practices, therefore migration plans had to be tailored to each team in order to set them up for success.
This was a particularly special program to me because previous to becoming a TPM, I contributed as a developer to the new platform. It was exciting to watch the program grow from a proof of concept to an organization-wide adoption, which would set Expedia up to be able to move faster and provide an improved experience for travelers.
In 2017, I mentored two high school students as part of the Girls Who Code Summer Immersion Program at Expedia. It was a lot of fun for everyone involved and the students were excited to see their work in production. I introduced them to UI development best practices, reviewed their code, planned their tasks, and provided career advice. It was rewarding to watch them become more comfortable and confident, and I learned so much as I developed my teaching skills. I highly recommend anyone who is interested to invest their time in this program.
The accessibility team created these voluntary roles to establish a network of professionals who are passionate and knowledgeable about accessibility. My responsibilities included raising awareness about the importance of making websites inclusive, participating in accessibility events such as Global Accessibility Awareness Day, and educating developers on writing accessible code. I worked closely with the accessibility team to ensure developers, designers, and product leads were completing the required training and resolving accessibility bugs on time. I was honored to attend the CSUN Assistive Technology Conference on behalf of Expedia, where I learned about the processes, challenges, and successes other companies experienced.
Although companies have a legal obligation to make their sites accessible, providing an equal experience for all users is simply the right thing to do! I'm grateful that I can help all of Expedia's travelers book trips.