November 23, 2020

Product Management Jobs

Have you ever used a product that didn’t work well at all and wondered what the company of that product was thinking? Or, have you used a product that worked so well you made a mental note to remember the company for future purchases? The people responsible for you having that positive experience are Product Managers. They are the ones who keep users in mind through various stages of product development to ensure that you, the consumer, end up with a high-quality product.

To qualify for Product Manager Jobs, you’ll need to have a certain skill set, which your education and current and past work experience might have already prepared you for. A resume writing service can sharpen your resume and help you highlight your current skills required to pursue a product management career.

What is a Product Manager?

A Product Manager guides each step a product takes from when it was a mere idea on paper to how it’s made to when it’s shipped and ultimately to how it finds its way onto a retail shelf. They play a critical part in this process and will interact with people in accounting, manufacturing, marketing, and sales to make everything come together.

PMs provide the budgetary planning necessary at each step in the process and ensure that critical decisions are made at the right time all along the product timeline. They use metrics to determine how much product needs to be made and sold. They study the competition and set direction for how consumer requirements are to be met and have daily interaction with key decision makers.

For example, they determine what needs to happen for a food processor to be on the shelves for Christmas or a barbecue grill to be available for sale next summer and how they will get there at just the right time and place. They must continually keep a wary eye on the calendar, the product objective, the organization, and the customer.

What is a Product Manager Responsible For?

People who work in product management careers have responsibilities that can be grouped in the following categories:

  • Delivery of Product to Market. PMs determine the objectives that need to be met for goals to be accomplished. They also define the process by which products are released to market and that they are reliable and good to use. They are also the glue that holds together all major business units in the organization, providing continual feedback to those units with timely follow-up and communication on their performance.
  • Managing Creativity. All competitive entities want a flow of cutting-edge products that anticipate what consumers want before they know it themselves. But managing creativity is extremely difficult. They make sure feedback is free-flowing, so creativity is not stifled. This allows organizational leaders to feel complete freedom in the flow of communication, whether good, bad, or indifferent.
  • Product Attributes. They select product features to receive particular emphasis that they perceive will bring value to the customer. Although a product may have several features that could be advertised, only a few well-chosen ones with the goal of customer value in mind will be advertised.
  • Customer Experience.They are responsible for establishing the desired consumer experience. They also must work to ensure that customers are provided the information necessary to make an informed decision.
  • Vision for the product. PMs are responsible for setting a vision for the product and defining the value expected to be returned to the organization. To do that, they are involved in every step of the way and must be aware of product strategy and how to implement it to achieve the desired result.

What Degree is Required to Become a Product Manager? What Do They Study?

For the person with the right personality traits, working as a Product Manager is a great way to make a living. People in product management careers often have a minimum of an undergraduate degree in business or a related field. The standard areas of academic concentration include advertising, communications, economics, management, marketing, public relations, and statistics.

Where Does a Product Manager Work?

PMs work in a variety of companies from manufacturing to software development. Within a company, PMs might work in Research and Development or Operations. They might even have worked in other departments within a company before moving into product management. Some of these departments are marketing and customer support.

When applying for a job, whether internally or to a different company, expand on points where you made a difference in user experience (UX) because this is, after all, what will drive sales and make a profit for the company. 

What Other Career Options are Available in Product Management Careers?

The product manager career path can take many directions. Promotion within a department is one way for people in product management careers to advance, but most likely, those with experience often transition from other areas, such as sales and marketing or functional management. A PM’s broad base of industry knowledge and operations know-how makes them highly desirable for several positions across the value chain. 

How Much Money Does a Product Manager Earn?

As you might imagine, people working in product management jobs are well compensated. Entry-level product management jobs range from $58,000 to $117,000, with an average salary of $92,000. Pay for senior roles ranges from $97,000 to $185,000, and director pay for product management jobs ranges from $123,000 to $213,000.

Product management careers are full of challenges, continuous learning opportunities, and the chance to play a vital role in the success of an organization and consumer experience. The person in product management must understand how business works, have a creative spark, and be able to cast a vision. If you are comfortable with responsibility and pressure, enjoy being in the limelight, and can set direction and chart a career path with a future, this type of management job might be right for you. Given the depth and complexity of it, contacting a professional writing service to write a best practices resume is highly advised.