waser iPM has many years of experience in Product Management in the Financial Services business in Retail, Wealth Management and Investment Banking, with many successful product launches. Our certified Agile Product Management practise will guide you and your teams safely and swiftly to reach your product goals.
The ultimate goal of Product Management, as a business function, is to create a product that is usable (I can figure out how to use it) and of value (I actually want to use it) to the end user; it thus closely aligns the company with the market. A Product Management organisation consists of several key roles in order to be successful:
- The Product Manager assesses key opportunities and defines the product to be built. He or she manages the discovery process to define the features, the functionality and the user experience of the solution, i.e. the product
- The User Experience Designer covers the product interactions, understanding in detail the target users and their requirements towards using the product
- The Project Manager has scheduling and tracking responsibility especially in larger scale product initiatives
- Software Development with several different roles required for successful agile software development projects
The Product Manager is charged with the strategy, the roadmap, and the feature definition of a product or an entire product line. This is a truly cross-functional, inter-disciplinary role requiring solid business and technology understanding, convincing social and communication skills and a passion for curiosity.
Get started with a business model, that is, a description of the rationale of how your organisation generates, delivers and captures value.
It doesn’t matter much, whether you follow the model of ‘Business Model Generation’ by Osterwalder/Pigneur, the ‘Business Model Navigator’ created at the University of St. Gallen, or any other method or tool. As long as you make sure, your organisation or your unit has a sound and concise understanding of what is the value proposition to your customers and how you are creating such value in your organisation and beyond.
The Product Roadmap
In order to arrive at a Product Definition and a Product Roadmap, i.e. a high-level idea and a plan that describes how your product idea is likely to evolve, you need to establish your Product Vision Statement. The Product Vision is your guiding beacon for customers, sponsors, product owner, scrum master and the entire team through your product initiative.
It typically consists of a product vision statement including the specification of the target group and its needs, the product description and how the product adds value to your company. Various tools (Pichler, Moore, Sinek) are available that help structure the discussion and document the product vision.
Take your Business Model Canvas and your Product Vision Statement as the input for your Product Definition and Product Roadmap creation. The Roadmap should be kept high-level and depict the major versions of the product. As such it assists the team to remain focused, decide on priorities, separate from potentially competing product initiatives and allow continuity in the product roadmap build-up.
Whether the roadmap is structured along goals to be accomplished or features that make up the product vision depends amongst other criteria on the maturity of the product and the dynamics of the market you are trying to conquer. Typically, the more dynamic the market and the younger the product and its features to develop, the shorter the roadmap horizon should be chosen in order to stay agile. A goal oriented approach is favourable for such environments; clearly defined goals can be easily verified and corrective action can be taken at once. Be sure you are clear about the priority of your product goals vs. time limits and budgetary constraints.
When determining the cost of a product backlog, make sure you are comfortable and satisfied with a good estimate rather than a detailed budget plan. Neither is your product backlog precise enough not is it precisely clear what the related cost will be at the outset. Set budget limits or adjust the product roadmap features in order to contain those risks. As you move through the sprints and develop the features of your product you will learn about and develop required planning and budgeting skills.
We are happy to provide additional information on Product Management including references upon request:
waser iPM – results | delivered