Meet Jinny & John — Coupang Eats Services Front Line Operations
"We want to grow together with the industry leaders of innovation — Coupang Eats Services"
Hi Jinny & John, can you tell us a little bit about yourselves?
Jinny: Hello, I am Jinny from the Front Line Operations (FLO) team at CES. I joined CES in September 2022 when my team had just been created. I am currently responsible for real-time delivery operations in Seoul. Seoul has been the focus of CES services. CES has experienced numerous issues here and it is my job to address such issues. We monitor to see if our delivery services are being provided smoothly and the promised delivery time is kept for all our customers during the Coupang Eats business hours 365 days a year. I am also tasked with securing delivery partners and responding to real-time issues to create the best possible delivery experience. I am growing together with the company every day.
John: Hi, my name is John. I joined CES in September this year. Coupang Eats was expanding its new service outside the Seoul Metropolitan Area at the time, and I have been overseeing real-time delivery operations in rural areas. I am doing my best not to repeat the mistakes of the past by leveraging the knowledge our team has acquired from operating in Seoul, but I still face new challenges that are unique to the rural areas. We are trying to solve those issues in order to provide the best delivery service to our customers in rural areas. My work contributes to keeping the delivery environment of Coupang Eats in good shape. In other words, it is about matching customers’ order demand with the supply of our delivery partners.
Can you describe your current roles in more detail for potential candidates?
Jinny: I oversee our delivery service during the Coupang Eats service hours all year round to provide the best delivery experience for our customers. When there is a problem with the delivery service, or when we expect one, I work to find the cause and solve it in real time.
This is why the FLO team works in shifts and is the fastest on the front lines to take actions based on the various real-time data. We mainly use internal data like orders and delivery costs and external data about weather, large events, traffic conditions, and disasters. Based on the data collected in real time, I adjust the delivery environment to help our delivery partners make excellent deliveries to the customers.
One of my primary tasks is making real-time decisions while monitoring and managing missions for our delivery partners. These missions give them extra payouts on top of the base fees. Coupang Eats virtually shifts its policies hour by hour to provide its customers with the best services possible. I reflect these policies in our operation and promptly respond to various incidents.
John: My team starts work at 6 am when Coupang Eats begins its service, and our work finishes at 4 am on the following day when the last delivery is completed. Our work is all about keeping the delivery quality of Coupang Eats at its best. To achieve that, we focus on checking and matching the order demand with the supply of delivery partners in real time. We also proactively look for and resolve issues that might compromise delivery quality.
I like to think of my team members as all-round soccer players — excelling at both attacking and defending. We control delivery operations for Coupang Eats in real time and collaborate with the Engagement, Eats Growth and Marketing, Operations Strategy, and FLO Planning teams from various viewpoints. In short, we are influencing many processes of Coupang Eats, and various experiences are allowing us to grow.
Jinny from the FLO team
In what ways do you think the FLO team has contributed to the growth of CES?
Jinny: Our decisions and actions directly and quickly impact the quality of Coupang Eats delivery service and seeing that makes us realize the importance of our work. I am proud to see my and my team’s input incorporated into our service’s details.
John: I very much agree with Jinny. We actively voice our opinions and make suggestions to other teams when Coupang Eats’ new policies need some adjustment or when new ideas are required. In fact, much of our feedback is incorporated into improving the policies. I have been with the company for a short time but knowing that my ideas directly impact the company’s growth is fulfilling.
What kind of work experience do you have? Can you tell us how that experience helped you to get hired or perform your current role?
Jinny: I previously worked in a sales management position in the manufacturing industry for about 3 years, and due to the nature of the industry, one mistake could have a massive impact on the company. So, I got used to taking on a big responsibility, and I think that experience has helped me perform my current role at CES. Also, in my previous company, I only did the work assigned to me, but here at CES, my work scope is expanding more as I collaborate with diverse teams as John mentioned.
John: The company I worked for was very conservative and traditional. I was a salesperson for 4 years and an office worker for another 4 years. It was a different job in a different industry, but the three skills I learned there have been helpful for my current role at CES.
Number one is a strong mindset. When overseeing real-time operations, you come across moments when you have to brief the management directly about what is happening. If you are not mentally strong enough, you will get nervous and make mistakes. However, I developed a strong mentality while dealing with customer claims at my previous job, and that experience has been valuable.
Number two is quick reaction. When I was doing 1 on 1 with customers at my previous company, I needed to react on the fly to unexpected situations. In the FLO team, we often encounter unexpected situations and my previous experience has proven essential to dealing with them.
The last skill is judgment. In my previous job, I worked in a situation room communicating with the field. We often had issues with defective, damaged, or mis-delivered products at construction sites. Quick and accurate judgment was crucial to minimizing damage when such issues arose. So, I made a quick judgment to swiftly provide what was needed on site, saving additional costs that would have been incurred if the work had not been completed that day. Here, the FLO team must be quick in finding the right solution for an issue happening in real time, and that is when the ability to make a quick judgment comes in handy. Once you have these skills, you can do a fine job here, even if the industry might be different.
Tell us about your team’s unique culture.
Jinny: My team works in shifts, so we do not see everyone daily. The culture I am most proud of in my team is that we constantly share our struggles and support one another. We are close to one another, even if we only meet occasionally. We all work together as a team, whether you are a new joiner or an old team member. Newcomers even bring fresh perspectives to the table, creating team synergy.
John: I worked for a very traditional and old-school company, and there was nothing I could change within the company. I had virtually no say, and people were busy trying to shift tasks to others.
In contrast, people are friendly here and take on responsibilities voluntarily. What surprised me the most after joining the company was everyone on the team wanted to do more work, even when no one was asking them to. Here, people know more about their tasks than anyone else and work with a sense of responsibility. I think that is unique to my team. The team manager, Alex, helped foster such a culture.
Since the FLO team works in shifts, isn’t it physically or mentally challenging?
Jinny: As John said, my team works in shifts, but I can work from home, so it is not challenging. When I work on weekends, I can take the days off on weekdays. That is a big advantage. I have a dog, and working from home allows me to spend more time with my dog. I can go to the vet on weekdays when my dog is sick. That makes a difference in taking care of my dog. I did not work in shifts at my previous job, but contrary to my worries, I have found shift work to be no big deal.
John: Like Jinny, I had never worked in shifts before, so I had some preconceived notions about working in shifts before joining, but now I love it. I am not a morning person, so I struggled with showing up for work on time every morning with my previous job. Now working shifts at CES, my hours are more flexible, and I do not struggle so much. Shift work comes with certain advantages for some people. If it works for your life pattern, you can live a slightly new and different life from before.
John from the FLO team
What are your most memorable or proudest moments since joining the FLO team of CES?
Jinny: I felt a lot of pressure about having to make a decision in situations I had never encountered before. Sometimes, there were tough moments, like when I had to make a real-time decision with a lot of things factored in. But when my choices are executed correctly and I get positive feedback from other departments, I feel immense pride and self-efficacy. Even when I fail, I get feedback that will help me make a better decision next time, which takes some of the pressure off me over time.
John: When I was quite new to the job, I once took the responsibility of proactively controlling the lunch/dinner peak for the first time after about a month of training. I was able to do a good operation job without any problem. That was the most memorable moment for me because I felt like I settled in well here and my work was recognized.
The recruiting team is interviewing John and Jinny
Any ultimate goal you want to achieve at CES?
Jinny: I want to be a great communicator. As with everything, a lot of my work requires me to communicate and collaborate with other teams, and I want to be recognized as someone who is excellent at communicating and finding the middle ground. I continue to discover things to improve on my job. There is still a lot to learn about how I should respond differently in different situations.
John: In the industry I worked in before CES, there was no organized way of doing the work due to the industry’s nature. People worked in a little haphazard way. As the company worked to systematize the process, it disclosed pricing to the public, which contributed to fundamentally changing the industrial culture. Likewise, CES is trying to change the fundamentals of the delivery industry in Korea. I'm very proud, and my ultimate goal is to grow personally as much as the company grows.
John and Jinny in a team meeting