In recent years, product management has become an important role, particularly in the software and services industry. Product Managers sit at the intersection between customers and any business looking to development products or services that can meet customer needs at a price that customers are willing to pay.
Good project managers are steeped with deep knowledge about customers and the markets that they serve, while at the same time having in-depth technical knowledge of their organization and products. They also generally need to have a strong business sense, in order to make astute decisions about which products are viable and likely to generate the most profits for the business.
WHAT DOES A PRODUCT MANAGER DO?
Product Managers are like orchestra conductors, in that their role is to ensure that a product successfully moves from idea to fruition, helping to define its identity and weighing on all critical development decisions such as pricing, packaging, positioning and marketing. They research, interpret and translate customer needs into ideas and potential features that a company can turn into real products or services. They coordinate with counterparts from other departments, from engineering and manufacturing to sales, marketing and finance.
WHAT KIND OF TRAINING DOES A PRODUCT MANAGER NEED?
To become a successful product manager, one must have a bachelor’s degree as a minimum, preferably in a technical field, such as computing, business studies, or engineering. For many product management jobs, a Master’s degree, MBA or PhD is usually considered an advantage. Experience in marketing, business and product development is also usually a plus.
Product Managers need to have excellent written and communication skills, as well as strong analytical and technical capabilities. They must have solid organizational and project management skills, given the need to liaise across teams.
WHAT ARE THE PROSPECTS FOR A CAREER AS A PRODUCT MANAGER?
Employment prospects for product managers are likely to remain strong for the foreseeable future.
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A January 2017 search on Glassdoor.com, for example, turned up 393,320 open jobs for this position – a signal that companies will continue to invest heavily in product and service innovation. Technology companies like Google, Miscrosoft, Cisco and others are leading the way, followed by companies in the services sectors such as financial services, advertising, and consumer goods companies like Proctor and Gamble, Unilever, and Coca-Cola to mention but a few. Similar roles to product management include brand management and category management.
HOW MUCH DO PRODUCT MANAGERS MAKE?
As of this year, the national average salary for product managers is $108,659 according to figures from Glassdoor. As with other professions, salaries tend to vary depending on qualifications, experience, location, and the particular industry or organization that one works for.
BECOMING A PRODUCT MANAGER REQUIRES TRAINING, START TODAY
Are you serious about becoming a Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist? Then you need to get the required skills and training to do it! To start your new career, first you must decide what school you want to enroll in, so you need to gather info about potential schools. Use the College Mouse Degree Search tool to find the right course and college for you, and get started towards your new dream job today! After you sign up for your course, make sure you fill out and submit the FAFSA so you can take advantage of any financial aid currently available to you!
Updated February 2017